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Thread: Icon appears during session

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Other potential conflicts...


    We have been using DirectRT on at least 4 different computers. We have also programmed different experiments and several versions for each experiment.

    What has occurred on various computers, using various programming and different versions, and at different times (e.g., 6 months ago, last week, etc.) is the following:

    During the programming, at random times, instead of the programmed stimuli a black screen appears with a tiny icon (which looks like a slightly different version of the image I am attaching) in the center of the page. You can occasionally get rid of this screen by pressing on a key that was entered as an acceptable response in the DirectRT programming, however at times there is no way to continue and you must exit the programming.

    In the output file, this malfunction is not apparent (e.g., it records the response if this was programmed, and looks as though the programmed stimuli was displayed).

    This happens occasionally and at other times not at all (e.g., we may run the program 10-20 times and it will only happen once, or several times, or never, without us making any changes to the programming or the computer settings).

    Upon reflection, I am wondering if this occurs due to potential automatic updates (e.g., java or windows) which interfere with DirectRT.

    Is this possible? Has this happened to others?

    I need help in resolving this as it is quite obviously interfering with us running experiments using DirectRT.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Hi Carolyn,
    I have heard of this before. You mentioned an image you had but I didn't see the attachment. I'd like to see it if you have it available.

  3. #3

    Same Problem, same solution?

    I think that we actually have the same problem right now. So what was the solution for Carolyn?


  4. #4
    Hi all,

    we have the same issue at the moment here in Wuerzburg, and we are running into troubles with a series of studies that we are running right now. At present, we are losing every other to ever third subject due to the error. So this is somehow pressing. Here's a detailed description:

    * Some bitmap stimuli are not presented during a directRT session. Instead, a little icon occurs that looks like the "middle" of the three Windows window action buttons (not minimize, not close, but the maximize button when the window actually IS maximized. It has two little windows on it).

    * The error occurs in multiple experiments (i.e. different drt files) and on multiple computers with different specs.

    * In a way, the error occurs randomly:
    - with different bitmaps (the same bitmap is sometimes shown, sometimes not)
    - with different .csv files (the error sometimes occurs with a given .csv, sometimes not)
    - at multiple positions within the .csv / within a session (sometimes the primes are not shown, sometimes the targets, sometimes the masks)

    * In another way, the error seems to occur systematically:
    - if it occurs once in a session, it occurs more than once
    - many sessions are totally error free

    * I just had the situation that it ALWAYS occured with a given .csv (10 sessions in a row). I than restarted the computer and it was gone in 5 sessions. But this may be random.

    * The error is not visible within the logfiles. Error trials just look normal. This makes it really troublesome.

    Again, this is really pressing as we do not have control over the phenomenon. At the same time, it seems not to be bound to a given program. It occurs with multiple programs written by different people.

    Any help is highly appreciated.


  5. #5

    Details about icons appearing

    Sometimes, the icon looks like this:


    But in other trials, the icon looks more like the Check icon in Media Lab (Media Lab\graphics\Check.ico)

    and in other trials the icon looks like two squares in a row, with the one in the background being darker than the one in the foreground.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    We have never figured this one out. It just seems to start happening in a lab once in a while. It lasts for a while, and then with as little notice as it started, it stops.

    My suspicion is that it has something to do with a DirectX or Video/Display memory glitch. I'm guessing that an icon gets written to video memory (either real or virtual) that is subsequently accessed by DirectRT. DirectRT, for some reason, is unable to write over that content (e.g., it is temporarily locked) and so you see the icon.

    Shutting down and restarting the system seems like a good bet. Also if there were some way to flush the video memory that would seem like a very useful thing to try.

    Also, check your display properties and see if the specific monitor you have is listed or if it is listed as "plug and play" or "default" monitor. I've noticed in many such cases, the specific monitor being used has not been made know to the OS.

    see also: http://www.empirisoft.com/support/showthread.php?t=600
    Last edited by jarvis24; 08-26-2008 at 02:51 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    same problem

    Hi all,

    we have the same problem. Sometimes (no appearent pattern) this little gray icon is shown on a white screen instead of the .bmp. file. If we press a key that was entered as an acceptable response the directRt file runs again. In the output file, this malfunction is not apparent. Quite bad, because we don`t know if there was a computer error or a mistake of our participants.

    Is there a solution for this problem by know? Any idea?

    We use the following Laptops: Hewlett Packard Compaq 615 , AMD Athlon X2 QL-64 2,1GHz, 1GB
    Working space, 160GB HDD, ATI Radeon HD3200 (graphic card), Windows XP and MediaLab 2008 1.33 and DirectRT V2008 1.0.13.

    Looking forward to your answers :-)


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005

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