Cognuse cures brain injury with LimeJS

4 years ago

Developers from the medical start-up Cognuse have been developing new generation cognitive rehabilitation platform for restoring and training executive functions after a brain injury or stroke since 2006. Their method consists of set of games specially designed by specialists of the brain injury area, that patients have to repeatedly play through. System stores their results and provides new harder levels based on their performance. Platform can be also used for general cognitive training to battle the cognitive decline in the elderly population, including people with a tendency to develop Alzheimer’s or similar diseases.

Cognuse’s clients are mainly health-care service providers and hospitals who specialize in brain health treatments, diagnostics, and rehabilitation services. For the ease of use and effectiveness of the training all games are to be based on touch interaction (and possibly provide mouse controlled fallback). The program would be used both on-site and on patients homes by their individual schedule. This meant that picking a single platform in the beginning would have been very risky and lot of people with only PCs/Macs on their homes would be completely left out.

Those requirements did leave the development team with only a few possible technology choices:

  • Native applications (Android, iOS, desktop).
  • Adobe Flash.
  • HTML5 & JavaScript.

Native approach was excluded first as very capable but most expensive choice. Over time there would be a need to create too many different application versions to different platform and development costs would have skyrocketed over very short time period. To cover only iOS and Android Cognuse would needed at least two teams of developers just for beginning. Flash as a choice was seriously considered but it would omit iOS as there is no support for Flash in this platform. iPad was (still is) the only serious contender for readily available and polished touchscreen device. All this did lead them to HTML5 and JavaScript.

Creating solution like Cognuse from scratch in JavaScript raises lots of problems: big Javascript project tend to be hard to maintain, incompatibility of devices and performance issues with same code running on different devices. Not to mention how complicated would be manage touch and mouse interaction together and achieve the effect of native full-screen iPad applications. LimeJS provided answer to all issues mentioned and was therefore obvious choice as the development platform. Also in the future there won’t require a notable (additional) development to support next new device or platform as long as LimeJS does it. What development team gained using LimeJS with this project is near native: look and feel, systematic approach and possibility to run it everywhere.

Main target device iPad is perfect choice - users will use games/exercises in unconventional environment. From rehabilitation point of view its perfect: iPad is very easy to use and understand. Its fast (yes, LimeJS runs really fast even on original iPad), it has multi-touch (sure, we did not mention that LimeJS has a great support for multi-touch, but it does) and as mentioned already there is no need for rocket scientist to operate it. The exercises do feature multi-control options and specialized user-interface design to meet needs of its target users.

Cognuse is currently in private beta stage. Platform and exercises will be released for hospitals and test groups in summer 2011 in different continents. We can not give out specific dates or details about but I’m sure you will find more info in near future from Cognuse homepage. Sadly we cannot link to games yet but here are some screens to give you a understanding what we were talking about.

cognuse platform screenshot cognuse platform screenshot cognuse platform screenshot cognuse platform screenshot cognuse platform screenshot

Olavi T├Ánisson
CEO DigitalFruit/LimeJS

Andress Mellik
CTO Cognuse