Using Morae Recorder+Observer: Yes or no?

16 Jun 2008 - 4:36pm
3 years ago
6 replies
1698 reads
Jerome Ryckborst
2007

I'd like to hear from people who have to conduct usability sessions on their own, AND who use Morae Observer on a second laptop. Does it make you more efficient? How much more?

After a recent stint analysing a ton of Recorder data, I can affirm that I love Recorder but that I spend more time than I should in Morae Manager, and maybe I need to use Morae Observer together with Recorder so I can reduce time spent in Manager.

Any comments? Tips? Cautions?

-=- Jerome

Comments

17 Jun 2008 - 9:31am
pnuschke
2007

I use Morae Recorder, Observer, and Manager regularly. Manager is a little
bit clunky, but now that I understand how it works I don't find it to be all
that difficult to use.

The only reason to use Observer, IMO, is if you planning on logging during
the session. For example, I've used a programmable keypad to mark quotes or
interesting parts of sessions, which then makes analysis and video
highlights much easier later on. The problem is that you need a second
computer nearby so that you can run Observer and connect the keypad.

Paul Nuschke
Senior Design Researcher
ELECTRONIC INK(c)
www.electronicink.com

On Mon, Jun 16, 2008 at 5:36 PM, Jerome Ryckborst <
JRyckborst at gemcomsoftware.com> wrote:

> I'd like to hear from people who have to conduct usability sessions on
> their own, AND who use Morae Observer on a second laptop. Does it make you
> more efficient? How much more?
>
> After a recent stint analysing a ton of Recorder data, I can affirm that I
> love Recorder but that I spend more time than I should in Morae Manager, and
> maybe I need to use Morae Observer together with Recorder so I can reduce
> time spent in Manager.
>
> Any comments? Tips? Cautions?
>
> -=- Jerome
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
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> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
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17 Jun 2008 - 11:32am
sabrina klein
2008

How efficient Morae Observer makes you depends on how you analyze your data and your ability to multi-task (if you're doing it on your own, it can be quite a task to moderate as well as take detailed notes).

I use Recorder, Observer, and Manager and find Observer to be very helpful. The beauty of Observer as you mentioned, is that it allows your notes to be synced with the video making Highlight clips much easier to pull.

In addition, if you take the time to define your tasks (if you have predefined tasks) in Recorder, you can use Observer to mark the tasks, do task timings, etc. Once the recordings have been imported into Manager you can filter/sort through your notes and have Manager show only Task A for example. This allows you to scan the notes you made for each participant who completed Task A which makes analysis quite simple. Through Recorder (v2.0), you can also filter for success, failure as well if you decide to log those in Observer. Finally, Version 2.0 also allows for surveys to be delivered to the participant with the press of a button (helpful if you are remote or in another room). To be honest I have found that the level of customization that I like for surveys are not easy to implement on Morae Recorder and prefer to create my surveys in Excel or Word and deliver to the participant by way of paper copies.

I'm not sure how you are running your "lab", but one problem I have had in facilities and elsewhere is getting Recorder and Observer to connect. This is largely due to Internet connection speed and firewall, but it is something to consider.

I've been using Morae for over 4 years now and am quite familiar with the product as I assist with troubleshooting and lab set-up in our labs in Dallas. With the amount I've babbled, you can probably see it's something that I'm quite passionate about and would be happy to answer any questions or share opinions if you want more! :D

Sabrina Klein
Usability Analyst
Usability Sciences Corporation

> From: JRyckborst at Gemcomsoftware.com> To: discuss at ixda.org> Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2008 14:36:25 -0700> Subject: [IxDA Discuss] Using Morae Recorder+Observer: Yes or no?> > I'd like to hear from people who have to conduct usability sessions on their own, AND who use Morae Observer on a second laptop. Does it make you more efficient? How much more?> > After a recent stint analysing a ton of Recorder data, I can affirm that I love Recorder but that I spend more time than I should in Morae Manager, and maybe I need to use Morae Observer together with Recorder so I can reduce time spent in Manager.> > Any comments? Tips? Cautions?> > -=- Jerome> ________________________________________________________________> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
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18 Jun 2008 - 1:16am
Manish Govind P...
2006

Definitely helps Jerome. You, for one are not making the participant conscious of being watched. Secondly, it always helps to have the stakeholders sit with you ( in a different room: you can project it on the wall if you want ) and observe whats happening. Thats a big win actually. When devs, ba's and the product owners see how the participants perform, they need no convincing ( with some additional interpretation maybe ) on the usability issues at all.

You use the recorder on the participant machine. Observer is the one which you look at on your screen. Manager is used to do the tests analysis after the user testing sessions have been recorded by the observer+recorder.Manager helps you all the statistical data for the parameters you were evaluating the application/participant for.

I wonder what the confusion is and if you're doing it right. How do you use observer and recorder both on the same laptop? Will you be staring at the participants screen from behind or sitting next to him then? How will you use the markers? Do you use just a notebook to write down the observations? How will you do the analysis from the manager if you don't have the markers?
For the way you're doing it, you probably just need a screen recording software and pen+paper.

Thanks and Regards | Manish Govind Pillewar | User Experience Designer Thoughtworks India Pvt. Ltd. | Bangalore-India |Tel. +91 9740073112 (M) +91 80 41113967 (Eve.)

15 Mar 2011 - 4:00pm
JohnTerceman
2010

What kind of camera have you been using with Morae Recorder? Any recommendations?

 

John Terceman

Human Factors Grad Student

17 Mar 2011 - 12:33pm
Ivan Burmistrov
2009

John, Logitech’s high-end webcams (starting from Webcam Pro 9000) are perfect for Morae (except QuickCam Orbit AF which is very distracting because it uses motorized tracking).

17 Mar 2011 - 12:13pm
Ivan Burmistrov
2009

We use Morae in a classic usability lab setup with separate testing room (running Recorder) and control room (running Observer): http://interux.com/Usability-Lab.html

Usually, two persons conduct usability tests: moderator who sits together with test participant in the testing room, and administrator sitting in the control room. Administrator is connected with moderator via portable radio set with earphone in the moderator’s ear.

Morae Observer does two main things:

(1) It allows the test administrator to observe the test participant performance and when necessary to give orders to the moderator (eg “Cancel this task because time is over and start next task”).

(2) It allows customer representatives sitting in the control room (or located remotely) to observe the testing process. In our practice, it is very often when customers want to observe tests live.

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