NeuroMouse frequently asked questions (FAQ's) and trouble shooting:
Will Neuromouse be set up ona WWW server ?
For several reasons, NeuroMouse is designed with intra-net rather that inter-net capabilities in mind. First, we want the program to be fast, even though it uses a large number of graphical interfaces, and has a substantial number of photographic plates. In addition, the open architecture of the various text fields allows researchers to modify the database, adding data as they see fit. A personal and/or intra-net structure for this program allows researchers flexibility in adding data, while maintaining personal control over added information. Conversely, it also prevents the addition of erroneous data by a third party to the main database.
In addition, while many of us access the vast quantities information stored on various web sites, as anyone who utilized these resources can tell you, interactive WWW graphical resources are frequently slower than the average scientist prefers (so much to do, so little time ! ) and have a tendency to crash at "mission critical" periods. Having the program on site, obviously provides a great increase in speed and reliability.
What makes Neuromouse differentfrom other neurologic programs ?
Aside from being one of the only complete atlases of murine neurologic information, a difference is the notes architecture; which allows users insert their own private data. Another is the fully integrated nature of atlases combining physical information on a givenneural structure, with function and expression, together with known genetic aspects. Additionally, NM has a strong practical component, providing information on various neurologic techniques.
I have heard that there are secretkeys in Neuromouse. True ?
Hmm … well, clicking in the "mouse" on the main contents page may provide one example, but there are others (more subtly located) throughout the atlas (pictures my beta testers, generally useless information, nefarious neuroscientists, etc.)
NeuroMouse overflows the screen.Solution ?
First be sure that the screen resolution is set to 800 x 600. Next see if you have selected LARGE FONTS. NeuroMouse is written for SMALL FONTS resolution and using LARGE FONTS will cause screens to resize themselves so that it would be necessary to scroll to view the entire screen. The resolution of 800x600 is supported by virtually every PC now in existence, and to provide optimal clarity with a relatively small file sized we had to decide on a fixed screen size (the choice was clearly a pretty straightforward one).
Some slides are difficultto view. Solution ?
Set screen colors to at least 16k colors for best viewing.
Where to I find the latest information for NeuroMouse ?
The simplest thing to do is visit the NeuroMouse home page at www.mshri.on.ca/molec/henderson/neuromouse.htm and punch up the relevant section.
A big program. How do I get around and find things efficiently ?
Initially users may prefer to stick to the set architecture of the program (the atlas sections). However, as users become more familiar with the program, they may find using the "open book icon" (present on all major NM pages) to move quickly from one point to another in the program. Although there are more than 1000 pages in NM, no two pages are more than three screens apart. As for finding a given topic, many sections are set up in a graphical "point and click" fashion (which we think is logical). However if you cannot find the desired topic easily on a given page, you may look up a number of topics on the "text interface" within the "neural structures" index. Also a number of "difficult to put my finger on exactly where this should be" topics are listed in the "molecular biology" index. Two other large indexes are the "genetic mutants" section and the "lesion index" (although these are fairly self explanatory.
I need HELP to do X, Y and/or Z. What do I do (other than calling people at 3:00 am) ?
For each page of NeuroMouse, there is a HELP button which should explain the basic functions of the items on that page. If this does not provide the answer in short order then either A) the program doesn't to that, or B) we set the program up to do that but its not (glitch - this hasn't happened yet, but there is always a first time), or C) Email or Fax us (see section 5) so that we can ascertain what the problem is.