Research Tools

Below is a list of commonly used research tools within UON. It is limited to research-related software that meets any of the following criteria:

  • available under a site licence at no cost (restrictions on use may apply)
  • available to or purchased by members of multiple schools, centres or faculties (additional costs or restrictions on use may apply)
  • open source software with IT Services-supported installation or deployment method available

Many of these applications can be self-installed through the Software Center on your UON computer, and some are also available for home use by staff or students.

If the software you are interested in is not listed, please contact us through the custom research request webform, as other users may exist within the University and a cost-shared arrangement may be possible.

Click the headings below to learn more about each software.

ArcGIS

ArcGIS is a Geographic Information System (GIS) for viewing, manipulating, compiling and sharing maps and other geographic information.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • License: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Linux
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Google Earth Pro

Google Earth Pro is a mapping program that allows interactive visualisation and exploration of the Earth's surface through satellite imagery, aerial photography and GIS data. In addition to visualisation, it contains a number of tools for analysis, including computing distances and areas, creating movies, and reviewing historical data.

This software is freeware and available to research staff and students.

  • License: Freeware
  • Operating System: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

ImageJ

ImageJ is a program for displaying, editing and analysing images. It is especially useful for working with scientific mulitidimensional images, including three-dimensional, time series and multiple imaging systems. A large range of plugins are available to extend core funcitonality.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • License: Open Source
  • Operating System: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

JMP

JMP is a statistical analysis package that allows data to be imported from a variety of sources and explored using descriptive statistics, grouping, filtering and visualisations. Other functionality supported includes statistical modelling, 'what-if' analysis, and custom scripting using the JMP Scripting Language.

This software is available under a site licence.

NVivo

NVivo is a software application for qualitative analysis of unstructured data, such as text, images, audio, vidieo and web-based information. It provides a range of tools for analysis, coding, anotation and exploration of data, as well as tools for visualising data.

This software is available under site licence.

  • License: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows only
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Prism 7

GraphPad Prism is a software package that combines scientific graphing, curve fitting, statistical analysis and visualisation. It contains a number of features designed to help simplify curve fitting and statistical analysis, and is commonly used in the life sciences.

This software is currently available to members of the School of Biomedical Sciences and Pharmacy, the PRC for Reproductive Science, and the School of Environmental and Life Sciences.

  • License: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Mac
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

SASS

SAS (Statistical Analysis System) is a suite of software designed for a wide range of advanced statistical analysis. It is capable of retrieving or importing data from a variety of sources, as well as processing and visualising data through  a graphical user interface or via the SAS programming language. SAS could be considered to be more powerful, but more complex than applications such as SPSS or JMP.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • License: Commerical licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Linux
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

SPSS

IBM SPSS is statistical analysis package used to analyse and visualise data in many fields of research. SPSS allows importing data from a variety of sources, and supports various types of analysis including descriptive statistics, bivariate statistics, regression and generalised linear modelling. In built functions can also be extended using 4GL, R or Python programming languages.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • License: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

MediaWiki

MediaWiki is a content management system that allows authors to easily create and publish web-based articles containing text, images and multimedia. Previous versions of articles are retained and tracked and can be restored if required. MediaWiki must be installed on a web server, after which it can be managed and accessed through a web browser.

A new MediaWiki instance can be setup using the Applications feature of the NeCTAR research cloud.
Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployable through the NeCTAR cloud dashboard, click here.

Omeka

Omeka is a web based application for exhibiting and displaying collections of data and images. Omeka must be installed on a web server, after which it is generally managed and accessed through a web browser. It contains advanced functionality searching items and collections by a range of metadata fields and standards.

A new Omeka instance can be setup using Intersect's Launchpod application: http://intersect.org.au/launchpod
Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployable through Launchpod, click here.

WordPress

WordPress is a Content Management System designed for creating and managing websites, blogs and web applications. WordPress must be installed on a web server, after which it is generally managed and accessed through a web browser.

This software is open source. ARCS can provide access to a WordPress instance for research use.

Bio-Linux

Bio-Linux provides an easy way to access more than 250 bioinformatics packages including graphical applications and command line tools. It also includes Galaxy, a browser based utility that allows building analysis workflows remotely.

A new Bio-Linux instance can be setup using the Applications feature of the NeCTAR research cloud.
Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployable through the NeCTAR cloud dashboard, click here.

DIVER

DIVER (Data Is Vital for Empirical Research) is a general purpose research data capture and sharing application. The software provides a means for the capture and long term storage of data and meta-data from various instruments. It is designed to provide rich functionality around time-series data, as well as the ability to store and organise other types of files.

A new DIVER instance can be setup using Intersect's Launchpod application. Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployable through Launchpod, click here.

LabVIEW

LabVIEW is a graphical programming environment that allows a user to build and execute programs by connecting node inputs and outputs through a drag and drop style graphical user interface. It is used across a wide variety of research disciplines, especially in STEM related fields.

This software is available under a site licence.

DMI Twitter Capture and Analysis Toolset

The Twitter Capture and Analysis Toolset (TCAT) is a set of open source tools to retrieve and collect tweets from Twitter and to analyse them in various ways. TCAT must be installed on a webserver, after which it can be accessed and managed through a web browser. TCAT allows a number of configurable options for extracting Twtter based data, as well as for analysing and outputting data in a variety of formats including CSV and GEXF.

A new TCAT instance can be setup using Intersect's Launchpod application. Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployed through Launchpod, click here.

LimeSurvey

LimeSurvey is a web based application used to develop and disseminate online surveys. LimeSurvey must be installed on a web server, after which it can be managed and accessed through a web browser. LimeSurvey supports a variety of question and data types, conditional logic workflows, statisctial analysis, and visualisation of responses.

This software is open source. ARCS can provide access to a LimeSurvey instance for research use.

Twitter Scraper

Twitter Scraper is an application that allows extracting data from Twitter. Setup includes entering a variety of parameters to specify the data to be collected, inclduing tweet content, hash tags, phases or users. When running, the Twitter Scraper stores matching tweets from Twitter's live feed, and the data is compiled into a CSV file for download.

A new Twitter Scraper instance can be setup using Intersect's Launchpod application: http://intersect.org.au/launchpod
Costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

  • Licence: Freeware
  • Operating system: Cloud based
  • Access: Self-deployable through Launchpod, click here.

Microsoft SQL Server

Microsoft SQL Server is a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) system. For development and small scale systems a freely available version known as SQL Server Express Edition can be installed locally on laptops and desktops. For larger applications and production environments, ARCS can provide access to a database running on a managed instance of SQL Server (enterprise edition).

This software is available under a site licence.

MySQL

MySQL is a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) system. A community version is freely available under an GNU Public Licence. This version can be downloaded and installed locally on a variety of operating systems. ARCS also provides access to a centrally managed and continually running MySQL server dedicated for research use. In either case a client program such as (e.g. MySQL Workbench) will be needed to develop and administer the database.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

Red Hat Linux

Red Hat is a popular open source distribution of the Linux operating system that is provided under a commercial support agreement. It includes many of the features found in other linux distributions, with improved support for end users.

This software is available under a site licence. ARCS can provide and support Red Hat physical and virtual machines for research use.

Ubuntu

Ubuntu is widely used distribution of the linux operating system for a range of devices including desktops, laptops and servers.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students. Note that RedHat is the preferred linux distribution and is fully supported by UON IT. Ubuntu and other linux distributions are supported by the ARCS team on a best endeavours basis.

VirtualBox

VirtualBox is virtualisation software that allows Windows, Linux, Solaris, OS/2 and BSD environments to be run on Windows, Linux, Mac and Solaris host operating systems. It is suitable for both server and desktop use.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Eclipse

Eclipse is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) primairly used for developing Java applications, though it can also be used to develop applications in many other programming languages.

This software is purchased by the School of Engineering. Licenses may be available to users from other areas.

JAVA

The JDK (Java Development Kit) allows software developers to build and compile applications in the Java programming language. Several editions of the JDK exist, and many are freely available under a GNU public licence. UON maintains deployable packages of the JDK, as well as Java3D (a Java based graphics library), JFlex (a lexical analyzer generator) and JavaNNS (the Java Neural Network Simulator).

This software is mostly open source and available to research staff and students.

Maple

Maple is a programming environment designed for analysing, visualising and solving mathematical problems. It includes a large number of mathematical functions, as well as interfaces for working with conventional mathematical notation. Maple is used in a wide array of areas including financial modelling, statistical analysis, computational physics, control design, signal processing and thermophysical modelling.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Mathematica

Mathematica is is softare for symbolic mathematical computation. It combines the Wolfram programming language with a notebook based interface that allows combining programmatic code, with rich text, visualisations and interactive interfaces. It is primarily used in scientific, engineering, mathematical and computing fields.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • Licence: Commercial license
  • Operating system: Cross platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

MATLAB

MATLAB is an application that provides both a high-level matrix based programming language and an Integrated Development Environment (IDE). Core features inlude data visualisation; apps for signal analysis, data classification and curve fitting; graphical user interface building tools; and interfacing with other languages suchs as C/C++, Java, Python, and SQL. A number of toolboxes are also available that further extend capabilities. MATLAB is commonly used in science and egineering fields of research.

This software is available under a site licence. A number of toolboxes are also available.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Microsoft Visual Studio

Microsoft Visual Studio is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that can be used to develop Windows based applications, as well as web applications, mobile applications, web services and databases. It supports many different languages including C, C#, C++, VB.NET, JavaScript and Python.

This software is available under a site licence for educational use only. A free version of this software (Visual Studio Community) is also available and can be used for acadmic research. See here for more information: https://www.visualstudio.com/vs/community

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows only
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Python

Python is a general purpose, object-oriented programming language that ephasises code readability. It includes a large standard library, and many other libraries are publicly available to extend its capabilities.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

RStudio

R is an open source programming language focussed on statistical computing, data analysis and a graphics. RStudio is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for R. It supports a number of features for working with R, including syntax highlighting, plotting, history, debugging and workspace management. RStudio can either be installed as a desktop application or on a web server after which it can be accessed via a web browser.

This software is open source and available to all staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Desktop version is self-installable through the Software Center. Web-server version is self-deployable through Launchpod, click here

ANSYS

ANSYS is a suite of software related to computer aided engineering. The ANSYS suite includes components for simulating fluid dynamics, finite element analysis and structural analysis. ANSYS products generally support graphical user interfaces as well a scripting and expression language for automation.

Licences for ANSYS CFX and Fluent have been purchased by the Schol of Engineering, and may be available to users from other areas. Contact IT for more information.

ArchiCAD

ArchiCAD is a Building Information Management (BIM) package that provides computer aided assistance for designing and engineering built environments.

This software is available under a site licence, however, restrictions to use may apply. Contact IT for more information.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Linux
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

AutoCAD

AutoCAD is a software package for 2D and 3D Computer Aided Design (CAD) and drafting. It is generally used in fields related to architecture, engineering (civil and mechanical) and interior design.

This software is purchased by a number of different areas within the University, and licenses may be available to users from other areas. Contact IT for more information.

Blender

Blender is a program for creating and editing 3D computer graphics including modeling, rigging, animation and rendering. It also provides support for game creation.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Creo Parametric

Creo Parametric is a 3D Computer Assisted Design (CAD) package primarily used for product design. It supports several types of modelling (solid, direct, robust assembly) and as well as technical design and visualisation.

This software is purchased by the School of Engineering. Licenses may be available to users from other areas.

CPLEX Optimizer

IBM ILOG CPLEX Optimizer (CPLEX for short) is a software package for mathematically modelling and solving problems. It provides high-performance programmatic solvers for linear programming, mixed integer programming, quadratic programming and quadratically constrained programming problems.

This software is free for academic use after registering through the IBM website.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Adobe Creative Cloud Enterprise Suite

The Adobe Creative Cloud is a suite of software that encompasses a large number of Adobe products. Most notably, this includes Adobe Photoshop for image editing, and Adobe Illustrator for the creation and editing of vector graphics.

A number of faculties and individual schools have purchased bulk licences to the creative cloud enterprise suite, and full access is available to staff and students from those areas. The UON also holds a site licence for other Adobe products, including Acrobat Pro, Photoshop Elements and Premier Elements - this software is available to all staff and students. Contact IT for more information.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Mac
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Audacity

Audacity is a digital audio editor for creating and editing audio files. It supports live recording, import and playback of a range of file types, and a large range of editing and export functions. Core features are extendable through additional plug-ins.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

ChemWatch GoldFFX

Chemwatch is a web based application that provides an independent review of substances, mixtures and preparation, training packages, emergency responses and advice related to fire/explosion, spills and chemical exposure. It includes a database for Material Safety and Data Sheets (MSDS), chemical labeling, and an inventory system for chemical storage.

This software is available under a site licence.

Etherpad

Etherpad is a web-based text editor that allows simultaneous authoring in real-time. It also allows programmatic access through APIs. Etherpad must be installed on a web server, after which it can be managed and accessed through a web browser.

A new Etherpad instance can be setup using the Applications feature of the NeCTAR research cloud costs associated with Virtual Machine may be incurred by the UON, and larger applications will require approval by IT.

EndNote

EndNote is a tool for managing references and bibliographies. EndNote allows collecting, storing and managing references, including full text PDFs. It is capable of automatically creating and formatting bibliographies, and inserting citations directly into documents in a selected referencing style.

This software is available under a site licence.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Windows and Mac
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

FileZilla

FileZilla is a tool for transferring data between computers via File Transfer Protocol (FTP) or Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP). These are commonly used methods for transferring large datasets to or from databases or repositories.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Mendely

Mendeley combines a reference management system with social network capabilities. Reference information can be automatically captured from websites and PDFs, and shared with other Mendeley users and groups. Stored PDFs are able to be viewed and annotated. Bibliographies and formatted citations can be created and inserted into MS Word and other documents.

  • Licence: Commercial licence
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Microsoft Office 365

Office 365 is a suite of software covering key applications such as Outlook, Word, Excel and PowerPoint. It is available both through a web interface and as a downloadable local application.

This software is available under a site licence.

Zotero

Zotero [zoh-TAIR-oh] is software for managing references and other research material. It integrates with web browsers and allows automatic recording of reference information from many websites, as well as capture of PDFs, images, audio and video files. Bibliographies and formatted citations can be created and inserted into MS Word and other documents.

This software is open source and available to research staff and students.

  • Licence: Open source
  • Operating system: Cross-platform
  • Access: Self-installable through the Software Center

Other useful resources

In addition to applications listed here, there are a number of other sites that contain useful information for finding research tools. These include:

  • UON Online Research Systems – Web-based systems for the application and management of research projects
  • Connected Researchers - A multi-disciplinary site covering all aspects of the research lifecycle
  • DiRT - An extensive and maintained list of research tools with a Digital Humanities focus
  • DataOne Software Tools Catalog - A wide range of research tools with a science focus
  • LabWorm - A community maintained listing of research tools with a science and laboratory focus