The Mobile Revolution in Experimental Research

There has long been a great longing in research for hand-held devices for entering data about people and events in structured experimental and observational research in the field and in the laboratory. But, these devices never came to pass simply because of the cost. In recent years, research technology became a fortuitous benefactor of 700 million interactive computer phones and millions of touch tablets all technically able to connect with the Internet and with each other and all owned by people who know how to use them. The missing ingredient was software that could exploit this new potential for primary data collection. That ingredient is ProtoGenie the online software toolkit created by and for researchers whose very reason for existence is to serve the building and execution of protocols for experimental research. This coincidence of available hardware and powerful generic software technology foreshadows an online mobility revolution in structured primary data collection, a simple example of which would be the daily entry pf information by subjects on a smart phone or touch tablet in a clinical trial.