Types of Data¶
Recording trial data¶
The first dataset that will be produced by your experiment will be a
simple log file, which you add to a single line at a time. In order to
add a line of data to the log, use
psiturk.recordTrialData(['this', 'is', 1, 'line'])
The list of values that you supply to
recordTrialData will then be
appended to the log. It is up to you how to structure those lists; you
will have to parse them as part of your analysis. Each time you call
psiturk.recordTrialData, it will also record the time it was called (with a UTC timezone).
Recording unstructured data¶
In addition to trial by trial data, there is often a need to record
information about a participant in the form of (field, value) pairs, for
which you can use
psiturk.recordUnstructuredData('age', 24) psiturk.recordUnstructuredData('response', 'yes')
Like the trial-by-trial data, it is up to you to decide whether or not to use this function. For some kinds of experiments (like simple surveys), this might be the only function you need.
Browser event data¶
The third dataset is generated automatically without any input from the experiment, and is used to track special kinds of events that occur as a worker is interacting with the page. Currently, this includes:
- “resize” events: when the worker changes the size of their browser window (the first value recorded is the initial size of the window)
- “focus” events: when the worker switches to and from a different browser window or application. If the worker leaves the experiment window, a “focus off” event is recorded; when they return a “focus on” event is recorded.
Information about how to retrieve recorded data sets can be found here.
Saving the data¶
It’s important to remember that
psiturk.recordUnstructuredData only modify the
psiturk object on
the client side. If you want to save the data that has been accumulated
to the server, you must call
It’s up to you how often
psiturk.saveData() syncs the task data to
the server (e.g., after every block, or once at the end of the
saveData frequently will limit the loss of data
if the participant runs into an error, but keep in mind that it involves
a new request to the server each time it is called.