Control panel

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In the control panel of a LIONESS experiment you can control and monitor a session (start and stop the experiment) and download the data and payment file. The control panel activates the central controller algorithm of an experiment (indicated with the heart at the top left).

During a session, the control panel of the experiment needs to be open on the experimenter's computer.

Control panel 0.png

Global control

The horizontal top bar contain basic control functions.

Control panel 1.png

Controller algorithm

The controller algorithm is called by the control panel page. Each second, the control panel will run a PHP script on the server performing checks related to the flow of the experiment. Specifically, the controller algorithm:

  • Registers new participants. It checks whether they have not entered the session before. If a participant has not entered before, the controller algorithm assigns them a unique player number ('playerNr'). If the button 'Game active' is switched off, no participants are allowed to enter a session, but those that are in will still be able to proceed.
  • Regulates grouping. It tracks the number of participants waiting in the lobby, and groups together those that are ready. Various pre-programmed grouping procedures are available.
  • Regulates group progress. It tracks for each group the number of participants that are ready to proceed to the next period (or a next stage, in case the experiment requires participants to wait for their fellow group mates) and controls their proceeding to the next period
  • Handles dropouts. In case a participant has dropped out (that is, the server cannot detect that their are active), the controller algorithm can take action. Upon dropout, you can choose to have the group continue with reduced size, terminate the whole group, or to take no action at all. You can define your Dropout handling preferences in the parameter table of an experiment.

    Global settings

    Game active / inactive

    With the 'Game (in)active' button, you can block new participants from entering. They will be directed to a page that they cannot participate at this time. You can customise the default text shown in these cases in the experiment's parameters.

    Test mode

    When developing your experiment, it is often useful to test you experiment by playing as a participant and inspecting the screens. The test mode will allow you to enter multiple times (i.e. control multiple 'participants') from the same browser. Once click this button, two more buttons will appear that will allow you to start your experiment as a test player or start a ['bot' | automatic bot], which will make automated decisions. The bot is useful for experiments in groups (so you have to control only one test player while the other decisions are generated automatically), or for long experiments (in case you want to check whether all data is correctly recorded in the database).

    Terminate player

    You can manually remove a participant from a session by entering their value of 'playerNr' in the field next to 'Terminate player'. This will take that participant to a screen indicating that they can no longer proceed. The software will treat this participant as a 'dropout', that is, the group will proceed according to the dropout handling settings. Note that terminating a participant is a 'last resort' measure.

    Export database

    With this button the database of the experiment is exported as an Excel file. Each of the tables will be shown in a separate Excel tab.

    Empty data tables

    With this button you can empty the tables of the experiment's database. This will not emtpy the parameter table will not be emptied.


    By clicking this button, an external program will create a map showing the location of the participants of your session. These locations are based on the logged IP addresses.


    Log out of the experiment.


    The bottom section allows you to monitor of a session and track the participants' progress.
    Control panel 2.png

    You can browse the tables underlying the experiment by clicking on the different tabs.

    During a session, basic information about the entered participants will appear in the 'core' table. By clicking the 'display options' button, you can choose which variables in this table you want to track. Clicking the buttons with the variable names will make them visible in the page section below. This section will be updated every second. Among the most useful variables are: playerNr, groupNr, period and onPage. The 'onPage' variable tracks which page a participant is currently watching. These pages are marked with stars (indicating active screens) or dashes (indicating waiting screens).

    Control panel 3.png

    In the example above, there are 5 participants in the experiment. Participants 1-4 have just passed the lobby and have been grouped together - the value of groupNr is '1' for each of these participants. They are currently in period 1, on the page 'Decision'. Participant 5 is currently on a page called 'Instructions' (which in this case comes before the lobby).

    Observe data collection

    Download data and payment files

    ==IP-based location map==