Announcement - new Ibex Farm

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Alex Drummond

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Dec 31, 2020, 6:37:13 PM12/31/20
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Happy new year!

I'm announcing a complete rewrite of the Ibex Farm deployed at

    https://ibex.spellout.net

The user-facing changes are conservative and incremental, but there are some significant improvements and new features. You can find an exhaustive list of these at https://gist.github.com/addrummond/b345d3d4f23436838e52afbe880ebbd9. The first section should tell you everything you need to know if you just want to use the new Ibex Farm the same way as the old one.

Behind the scenes everything has changed radically. Ibex is now a modern web app deployed on Amazon AWS with data storage on S3, RDS and ElastiCache.

I've imported a snapshot of all Ibex Farm data taken at 18:35 UTC Dec 31 2020, so you can log in with your existing account. This import is a one-off event: there is no connection between the old and new sites, and any changes you make on one will not be reflected on the other.

I expect there to be some teething troubles. You can continue to use the original Ibex Farm at https://spellout.net/ibexfarm. My aim is for the new Ibex Farm to become fully stable over the next few months. I encourage people to start trying out the new site now so that bugs can be identified and fixed. Please raise bug reports as issues in the following git repo rather than posting to this group: https://github.com/addrummond/newibexfarmissues

The code for the original Ibex Farm remains open source and you are (as before) free to modify the code or use it to host your own Ibex Farm instance. For the moment I am not releasing the source code for the new Ibex Farm. I'm still figuring out how best to support its future development.

Let me close by offering my thanks to everyone in this group who's helped to build the community around Ibex Farm over the years. Rebecca Colavin had the bright idea of setting this google group up in the first place. Alexandre Cremers has repeatedly given his time to help out others with their experimental designs. Titus von der Malsburg posted a much-needed guide to MTurk and latin squares and reformatted the Ibex manual in markdown. A great many others have stepped in to answer people's questions and post useful code and information. Bug fixes have been contributed by (at least) Laurel Brehm, Michael Yoshitaka Erlewine and Alexandre Cremers. Jérémy Zehr has been doing a lot of interesting work on PCIbex, particularly in expanding the range of experimental paradigms that can be used.

Best,
Alex

Alexandre Cremers

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Jan 2, 2021, 3:38:03 PMJan 2
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Happy new year Alex!

Thanks for all the work, I can't wait to try the new version. Your dedication to this project made it one of the most important contributions to online psycholinguistics in the past decade! Anecdotally, I still remember how you managed to upload a version that fixed some minor bug on new year eve 9 years ago :)

Best wishes,
Alexandre

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Jeremy Zehr

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Jan 4, 2021, 1:34:21 PMJan 4
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Thank you Alex, and happy new year to you!

I tried logging in on the new farm with two accounts that I've had for years, and I get an "Invalid username or password" error message for both (I'm still able to log in on the original farm). Am I missing a step?

I've actually also wrote my own version of the farm using Ruby on Rails, and deployed it on an AWS setup. It's been quite a lot of work, so I appreciate the time and effort you've put into both the writing of the original farm and this rewrite!
I was originally planning on importing a snapshot of my instance of the original farm too, but now I'm thinking of starting a whole new database and just leave the original one up in parallel. Although you made me curious, did you come up with a simple enough migration procedure?

Best,
Jeremy

Alex Drummond

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Jan 4, 2021, 1:49:32 PMJan 4
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Hi Jeremy, you're not missing a step. If you could email me the
usernames I'll look into it. And please anyone else who is having
trouble logging in to an old account, do let me know. I've only been
able to verify with certainty that my own accounts are accessible (as
of course I don't know anyone else's passwords).

The import process was a pretty big PITA honestly, but that's partly
just because it's 160GB of data now for the original Ibex Farm. (It's
much less once all the duplicate files are reconciled - I have about
9GB on S3.) In terms of how the import process works it's just a
fairly rough and ready Go script. I've put it up as a gist:
https://gist.github.com/addrummond/f5ac937c4456f69e0be8cdf6cbd273db
Obviously the details depend on my particular implementation, but
perhaps some of the code there could be useful for you if you choose
to do an import at some point.

In all honesty I'm not sure if an import is worth the bother, though.
I did it because I was originally planning to immediately replace the
old Ibex Farm with this one .But then I chickened out at the last
minute :)

Alex
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Alex Drummond

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Jan 4, 2021, 2:42:14 PMJan 4
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I won't spam this group with bug info generally, but the fix for this
one might be relevant to others who were having trouble.

You would previously have been unable to log in if your username on
the old Ibex Farm was not all lower case. This should be fixed now.

In the new Ibex Farm, all usernames are normalized to lower case and
have to be case-insensitively unique. I found a tiny number of
instances of accounts distinguished only by case - mostly quite old
and unused. If you find yourself still unable to log in to your
existing account on the new Ibex Farm, your account is most likely one
of these, and I can easily fix things up for you if you shoot me an
email with your username.

Best,
Alex

jkd...@gmail.com

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Jan 29, 2021, 1:06:04 PMJan 29
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Dear Alex,

Thank you for all your work - Ibex has been critical in helping me get out the majority of experiments I've run throughout grad school, so I'm excited to see this new version! I currently have a few experiments up in the original Ibex - is there a deadline where the original Ibex will no longer work? I do want to start learning this new version as soon as possible, but I want to finish up these current experiments in the old version if possible.

Best,
Jack

Alex Drummond

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Jan 29, 2021, 3:34:55 PMJan 29
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Hello Jack,

There is no deadline as yet, but yes, I am planning to retire the old
version at some point this year. I will give advance notice of this
and post a prominent warning on the original site. There will also be
options for people to access/migrate their data.

I would strongly encourage people to create any new experiments on the
new Ibex Farm. From a user's perspective it's only slightly different,
so there isn't a whole lot to learn. The short-term pain is worth it,
I promise! Surely there can't be too many fans of the original Ibex
Farm's "not quite CSV" results format?

By the way, I do intend *all* experiments that work on the old Ibex
Farm to also work on the new Ibex Farm. If anyone finds an experiment
that doesn't work as expected, please raise an issue at
https://github.com/addrummond/newibexfarmissues.

Best,
Alex
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jkd...@gmail.com

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Feb 3, 2021, 11:11:20 AMFeb 3
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I almost became fond of wrangling the results though! :D

Sounds good - a heads up will be nice although I will probably be finished with all old experiments by then. Thanks again!

Best,
Jack

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