Our Portable Lab Philosophy
Portable labs should be compact, robust, and able to leverage commercial off-the-shelf components for emergency repairs.
As practitioners who have traveled with portable labs, we know the challenges associated with usability testing on the road. We designed a portable lab that meets our standards for methodological flexibility, portability, and ease-of-use.
Set-Up Time Metrics
Our lab takes about 15 minutes to set up and 15 minutes to pack up.
With an Ovo Studios portable lab, while you are packing up your lab, you can burn your preliminary report and all A/V data to a CD-ROM for your customer. On the plane ride home, you can write your report, make highlights, and publish your report in web-ready format.
Ovo Studios Portable Labs give you the usability lab functionality you require in a form-factor designed for travel. These labs have been carefully designed to balance portability, cost, setup time, and maintainability. An Ovo Studios Portable Lab means no more shipping wheeled crates of A/V equipment to customer sites or trade shows.
An Ovo Studios Portable Lab:
- Fits in a plane’s overhead compartment.
- Sets up in 10 minutes and packs up in 10 minutes.
- Records full resolution VGA from any operating system.
- Records video from webcams, device cameras, and other video devices.
- Integrates seamlessly with Ovo Logger 7.0.
Ovo Studios Portable Labs are based on Ovo Logger software, which means:
- They impose no requirements on the user computer. The user computer may be any operating system and have any graphics settings.
- Nothing needs to be installed on the user computer for recording purposes. This enables you to walk up to any user computer and start testing, regardless of user permissions and security settings.
- Any number of team members can connect to your Ovo Logger Computer and contribute to the test database by logging observations.
- You can stream video and audio to remote observers and permit them to log observations.
The Ovo Studios portable usability lab is designed for the following data gathering situations:
- Software usability tests - recording one computer screen and one camera feed.
- Focus groups or seated interviews - recording two camera feeds.
- Device Testing - recording two camera feeds: one face camera and one device camera.
The anticipated interview environment is a conference room where the user and administrator are co-located at a table or desk, each working at their own computer. In the event of a software usability test, if you can source a spare monitor at the customer's site, test administrators can watch the user's computer desktop on that monitor.
*If you record more than two sources in your fixed lab, you will need the processing power of a workstation computer. In that case, you will need a dedicated notebook computer for portable testing.
Our portable usability labs consist of the following components:
- Ovo Logger on a notebook computer. This is the core of the portable lab and enables the following functions:
- Logging your usability test.
- Recording camera output.
- Recording the user's computer screen.
- Making video highlights.
- Writing your report.
- Exporting your report in HTML format.
- Screen recording hardware, for recording the user's computer screen in native XGA (up to 1600x1200.)
- All necessary hardware and accessories including webcam (for recording the user's face), VGA splitter, USB microphone, power strip, all interconnecting cables, and rolling case (small enough to be carry-on luggage for air travel.)
In short, an Ovo Studios Portable Lab is an Ovo Studios Fixed Lab that is optimized for travel and limited by the hardware capabilities of a notebook computer architecture. For a complete understanding of Ovo Logger's capabilities, please refer to the Ovo Logger software pages.