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formious

0.5.0 • Public • Published

formious

latest version published to npm

Formious is a node.js experiment server. It fills a niche somewhere above Google Forms, SurveyMonkey, or Qualtrics, but below a full-fledged web application. It provides an opinionated way of presenting stimuli to a participant, which requires more technical knowledge than the previously mentioned form services, but allows much greater flexibility in the construction and presentation of the form questions.

In particular, it was originally built to interface with Amazon Mechanical Turk. In addition to serving as the backend for External Questions, it also provides an alternate interface to parts of the AWS MT interface available via the API.

Installation

npm install -g formious
formious

Build steps

The scripts field in package.json defines the build steps.

  • The prepare stage runs the TypeScript compiler, because the compiled output is not kept under version control.
  • The prepack-* stages are for static client-side requirements, like .css and bundle.js.
  • The prepack stage runs the various prepack-* stages.

Deployment

We'll deploy to a Digital Ocean droplet.

DIGITALOCEAN_ACCESS_TOKEN=6c4a0280d36dc219n0t4ctua11ymydigital0ceant0k3n9186729fe910b157bb
docker-machine create -d digitalocean --digitalocean-region nyc3 --digitalocean-size 1gb formious

The formious application requires a PostgreSQL database.

docker run -d --name db -p 127.0.0.1:15432:5432 \
  -v /var/docker/db:/var/lib/postgresql/data postgres:9.4
  • the -v argument stores the data on the host machine so that we don't lose all our data if we accidentally remove or update the postgres container.
  • the -p argument opens the database for access directly from the host machine, which makes backing up the data easier. E.g., if on Ubuntu, run apt-get install postgresql-client to get the appropriate tools, then run pg_dump -h localhost -p 15432 -U postgres formious to dump the database to stdout.

We'll use the handy jwilder/nginx-proxy container to back-proxy HTTP(S) requests to the formious app.

docker run -d -v /var/run/docker.sock:/tmp/docker.sock \
   -p 80:80 -p 443:443 --name nginx jwilder/nginx-proxy

This repo is automatically built as a docker container on Docker Hub at chbrown/formious.

docker run -d -e VIRTUAL_HOST=formious.com --link db:db \
  --restart always --name app chbrown/formious
  • The -e VIRTUAL_HOST=formious.com argument tells nginx-proxy to forward formious.com requests to this container. You would use a different hostname here, since I own formious.com.
  • The --link db:db exposes to the database container, named db, to the formious application, under the alias db.

To update, pull the latest image, remove the running container, then enter the same docker run command as above:

docker pull chbrown/formious && \
  docker rm -f app && \
  docker run -d -e VIRTUAL_HOST=formious.com --link db:db \
    --restart always --name app chbrown/formious

License

Copyright 2011–2015 Christopher Brown. MIT Licensed.

Keywords

install

npm i formious

Downloadsweekly downloads

19

version

0.5.0

license

MIT

homepage

github.com

repository

Gitgithub

last publish

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