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The BIOAPP offers several tools. Here is a list and brief description of what you can offer your visitors and members.

The BIOAPP is very adaptive, it can easily integrate your curent website, it can re-use preowned website content and graphical appearence or you can create a new site from scratch.
It's a complete solution with all the pages and tools you would expect from a network of observers and much more.

Below are detailed informations and video examples of the main features of the BIOAPP.

Home page

On the home page you can feature :
  • A personalized welcome note for visitors and for authentified members;
  • Some statistics such as amount of members, number of observations, member who added most observations in the last 30 days, most recent registered members etc..;
  • The most recent news;
  • A summary of the following five news;
  • Randomly selected thumbnails of the species represented on your site (you choose how many are displayed).

See a video example of the Home page on diffrent websites powered by the BIOAPP :

Form for submitting observations

The form for submitting observations is very user-friendly. The observer can enter coordinates manually, or simply by moving a marker on a map. Conditions during the search effort, such as temperature, habitat and other are selected through drop-down menus. You can select more than one species at a time, checking each species observed during a search effort. For each species observed, it is possible to add a photo and comments. A validation system ensures that the fields are filled in correctly before submitting the form.

See a video example of the form for submitting observations from the Underwater observers network:

list of species

There are two main ways to find a species featured on a website powered by the BIOAPP. A search engine is available on all pages or by browsing the list of species. The list of species can be navigated in two ways, either in "photo" or in "list" mode.
In "photo" mode, species are separated by category and represented by a thumbnail and name.
In "list" mode, species are represented in a table with three columns, english, latin and french names. Clicking on a column heading reorganizes species alphabetically.
If species are found in more than one environment (eg salt water / fresh water), it is possible to filter the species by the environment.

See a video example of the "Species list" from the Underwater observers Network:

Species descriptive files

The main features of a species descriptive file are :

  • One or more pictures that enlarges when clicked;
  • A link to the photos added by observers for this species if any;
  • The different taxonomic groups to which the species belongs;
  • Video sequences;
  • Text for description, habitat, distribution and natural history;
  • Glossary words added to the database are automatically recognized in the text and will show definition when hovered;
  • Thumbnails and names of similar species;
  • An interactive map of the observations added for the species;
  • Charts of statistics based on observations;
  • Possibility for members to be notified by e-mail when an observation is added for the species;
  • A button to get a printable version of the page;
  • A button to send a link to this page to a friend;
  • links to move to the next or previous species.

See a video example of the "species descriptive file's static content" from the Underwater observers Network:

See a video example of the "species descriptive file's dynamic content" from the Underwater observers Network:

Observations map

On this page, visitors can see all observations in the database. The observations are presented on an interactive map where each observation is a clickable marker containing all the information for the observation.
Below the map is a form to filter the observations according to multiple criterias.
Optionally, data can be downloaded in Excel format.

See a video example of the "observation map" from the Underwater observers network:

Member pages

Member pages are only accessible to authentified members.
Each member has a page dedicated to him/her which contains:

  • A photo (avatar);
  • A map where you can see all observations added by the member;
  • Photos attached to his/her observations;
  • The list of the species for which the member wishes to be notified when new observations are added;
  • A form to send private messages (e-mail and name are kept confidential).

A list of the members is available where they are presented in alphabetical order.

See a video example of the "mebers page" from the Underwater observers network:


  • The forum is fully integrated to the rest of the site.
  • Messages are sorted by categories, groups and subjects;
  • Members can create subjects and messages, but only administrators can create categories and groups;
  • It is possible to add photos to messages;
  • Links are automatically recognized and activated;
  • Glossary words are automatically recognized;
  • A link to a Youtube video is automatically recognized and the video is displayed directly in the message;
  • If a name in english, latin or french of a species represented on the site is recognized in the message, it automatically becomes a link to the species descriptive file;
  • All messages are accompanied by the avatar of the member and clicking on the avatar leads to the member's page.

Other pages and tools

Several other pages and tools are available where the content is dynamic and administrable. Here's the list:

  • "Help & hints" page : to help visitors and members to take full advantage of everything your site offers. In addition to text, you can add photos and video.
  • Links : A page where you can organize by categories as many links as you want.
  • Contact : A contact form protected from bad bots by a captcha system.
  • Glossary : A page where you can find all the glossary words and their definitions. The glossary words are automatically highlighted in the text of species descriptive files and the messages in the forum. When the visitor passes his cursor over a word of the glossary, a definition appears automatically.
  • Photo submission form : A page that allows members and visitors to submit photos.
  • Editor area : You can designate any species descriptive file to any member and give them access to the drafting of this page. They can then modify the text, photographs, designate similar species and much more.
  • News : A «News page».
  • Advertising : An advertising management system is integrated into the application and one page is intended to allow visitors to submit an ad to display on your site.
  • List of species for other web sites : A simple bit of code to add on any web page will display the list of species represented on your site. A page is intended to explain to visitors how to install this list on their website.
  • Specific content pages : Directly from the administration zone, you can create as many new pages as you need with content specific to your website.

Installation and minimum requirments

The installation of the BIOAPP on a server is very easy.
Once the files are transferred to the server and you access the home page for the first time, a wizard will take you step by step and lead you to complete the installation and start managing your site.
The application works on Linux based hosting services. The only requirements are PHP5, MySQL and the GD library.

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