About: Story

The story behind SoPHIE

SoPHIE was developed and is maintained by Achim Hendriks at the Heinrich W. Risken chair of Management and Accounting held by Professor Dr. Robert Gillenkirch at the University of Osnabrueck. The motivation to implement a web-based platform for experiments originated back to Achim's time as a student research assistant when he worked at the chair of Professor Dr. Gillenkirch and wrote his diploma thesis on computerized experiments in economics.

Achim continued to implement web-based experiments during his Ph.D. time and, with the help of student assistants, the first versions of an integrated experimental software package was implemented. When more and more complex experiments had to be implemented the concepts first deployed for simple web-based experiments were refined not only proving to be reliable but also to be quite flexible. Over time it became clear that combining an open software architecture with an easy to use web-interface did not only eliminate some of the limitations of comparable software products but that it could be a useful alternative for other experimental researchers. We therefore decided that it would be desirable to provide the software as a generic solution for computerized experiments in the social sciences.

Within the following month the name SoPHIE was born and the interface was revised completely to increase usability for researchers outside of the SoPHIE team. The basic building blocks of SoPHIE experiments were restructured to follow a modular approach to further simplify extending SoPHIE without the need to modify the core code. Following these steps the software's third major version (3.0.0) was release as a first beta version to a closed group of beta users. In 2012 the first public SoPHIE workshop was held at the University of Osnabrueck. Some beta releases and workshops followed with the goal to extend SoPHIE's capabilities as well as to increase the intuitiveness of the web interface. In July 2013 the first public beta release was published together with the launch of a community mailing list.

Upcoming Events

2013-09-11: Compact Workshop, Osnabrück, Germany
Workshop Program

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