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Welcome to RexDB ®!

RexDB is a platform for creating Configurable Data Repositories (CDRs). Unlike typical data warehouses and data marts, CDRs can be configured by implementation analysts, usually with little-to-no help from software engineers, and with no help from database administrators.

After several previous development iterations used to deliver data management solutions for a wide range of studies in autism and associated disorders research, Prometheus Research decided to open source all aspects of the RexDB platform for the greater scientific community. This open sourcing initiative began in 2011 with a completely new redesign of all elements of the platform.

The RexDB platform is comprised of three groups of core functionality; RexApp, RexAcquire and RexMart. Based on this platform, Prometheus Research has released a CDR called RexStudy, based on the RexDB platform.

RexApp

RexApp is a toolkit that enables the installation of all necessary software for hosting, building and extending a RexDB instance. It contains a thin data-access layer, called HTSQL ®, and tools used to deploy database schemas, conduct Extract, Transform and Load (ETL) operations and rapidly build screen interfaces.

RexApp supplies a complete infrastructure for the development of a centralized and customizable data management system. It includes a basic menuing system and screen templates that meet commonly needed design patterns.

Screens are composed of standard widgets organized inside templates. In cases where an application requires a screen not supported by the existing library of widgets and templates, the configuration library of widgets and templates can be extended by a customization engineer using a standard open-source web framework (ReactJS). Thus, the library grows over time, further reducing the need to use customization engineers for common cases and reducing the cost of delivery on standard projects.

RexAcquire

RexAcquire is a comprehensive Electronic Data Capture (EDC) that includes mechanisms to directly capture data from direct reporters such as RexSurvey and RexMobile, as well as a dual-data validation entry system designed for rapid keyboard entry by staff members, such as RexEntry.

RexAcquire separates data acquisition from the transactional system so that it can scale to a large number of users. In addition, both instrument configuration and the resulting item-level assessment data are stored as structured JSON data within the database. This storage mechanism ensures that the meta-data of the transactional system does not need to expand as additional instruments and versions are added. This elimination of schema expansion has significant positive impact on the performance of the application.

RexAcquire includes three electronic data capture systems:

  • RexEntry: A dual-data validation entry system designed for rapid keyboard entry by staff members
  • RexSurvey: An entry system designed for self-reporters entering data through a web interface
  • RexMobile: An entry system designed for self-reporters entering data through SMS-based text messages

RexMart

RexMart enables users to create custom, shareable data sets from RexApp allowing them to explore and understand their research data. Using RexMart, users can summarize, visualize, and statistically analyze their form, participant, study and biospecimen research data within the product and export the results to numerous third-party tools, such as Excel, SAS, SPSS or R.

RexMart separates ad hoc querying from the transactional system so loading one does not interfere with performance on the other. By creating several small data marts, which are normalized for specific usage, performance impact is greatly reduced. Further, the structure of each data mart can be tuned to better fit the intended use cases, selectively denormalizing data as needed to better fit the end-user’s mental models.

RexStudy

RexStudy is used to help researchers securely integrate, manage, query and share their behavioral, medical, genomic, imaging and biospecimen-inventory data. It contains a study management data structure to manage the complexities of single visit or longitudinal studies.

To try out a demonstration instance of RexStudy, click here.

RexDB Software License

The RexDB License is located here