How does the ALEX Patient Communication Simulator work?

The ALEX Patient Communication Simulator requires a live internet connection to operate. This is necessary to capture all simulation data in the cloud and to control the simulator from any device (computer, smartphone or tablet) with internet connectivity.

What ports are required for internet connection?

ALEX uses HTTP 80 and 443. Optionally, UDP port 123 for NTP.

Any downloads, plugins required?

No downloads or plugins are required. Any client device with live internet connection can control the simulator.

Any browser restriction?

Most features work, simulator setup and control is possible, from any device browser (Safari, Firefox, Chrome, MS Edge). For full functionality, recommended browsers are Google Chrome and Firefox.
Live video and Push-to-talk (VoIP) communication require desktop Firefox or Chrome; ALEX uses WebRTC video technology, fully featured in Chrome and Firefox.

Why doesn't the 'Push-to-talk' work?

The 'Push-to-talk' works through Voice over IP (VoIP) within the software interface. Activating the feature will request for microphone access in the browser. Make sure to allow microphone access when the 'Push-to-talk' prompts (through popup or address bar) in your browser.
Note: if changing network (i.e. switching from one wifi to another) while using the Push-to-talk, you may need to quit and reopen the browser to refresh connection.

Bandwidth requirements?

For full and smooth operation, constant 5Mbit/sec upload and download is required for the internet connection the ALEX simulator is used on.

Is ALEX tetherless?

ALEX can be operated fully tetherless: power from internal battery for about 8 hours and network on wifi. Having said that, when used at a permanent location, we suggest connecting a wired ethernet connection for maximum stability, especially for IrisCam audio-video and conversations.

ALEX runs a wifi access point. Can we disable the wifi access point?

Disabling the internal access point of ALEX units is possible (by our engineers) albeit not recommended. In lack of a built-in display and input devices that would make it impossible to configure the wifi network ALEX uses to access the internet.

Alternatively, the internet access on this hotspot can be disabled. This way, wifi setup would still be possible but using ALEX would be impossible from this network.

Can we have control over the bridging feature?

There is no bridging going on, ALEX acts just like any router: does network translation between interfaces and uses 192.168.xy IP addresses on the "hotspot wifi" network. This is the same functionality any network-connected Mac or PC laptop may provide you if you enable "internet sharing": the wired connection of the laptop can be accessed from nearby wireless devices.

Does ALEX bridge the wireless and wired networks if we happened to connect those at the same time?

No. While any cable is connected to the RJ45 port, the "internet wifi" interface is kept disabled. The "hotspot wifi" interface runs all the time to make internet connection configuration possible.

What wifi network can be used?

ALEX can operate on mutual wireless networks, both 2,4GHz and 5GHz.

How is the system secured, from accessible services on ALEX's local network through the video storage, retrieval and deletion?

All data in transit, at the simulator and at the cloud are encrypted. On the local hotspot wifi, the simulator by default routes TCP and UDP traffic, providing an internet connection that's practically identical from a client standpoint to what ALEX has.

How are users and admins created, secured, etc?

Accounts are secured with the combination of passwords, HTTPS and the fact that no passwords are ever stored or even transferred to the cloud. Authorized users can add any email addresses to give them the same access they have over an ALEX unit. Invited users then can either log in to access the shared resource or set a password for their new ALEX account when clicking on the link in the notification email.
As any password-secured system with password reset option, the security can be as strong as the users' ALEX account passwords and email boxes.

The ALEX security model is very clean: if a user is authorized to access the simulator, that user has full control over the unit: can start and stop sessions, see live video from running sessions, and list, as well as review, recordings of past simulation sessions. Only a very restricted group of users should ever get access to your simulator and added to the list under Simulator Properties / Sharing. Any fully authorized user can authorize new users (better said, email addresses) to access a simulator and its recordings by adding the email address to the Simulator Properties / Sharing list.

Additionally, an ALEX simulator live session can be shared just like a google document set to "anyone with the link can view". The links cannot be guessed as they include a long random ID. If an authorized user does share such a link with someone though, the session can be viewed (read only) by that someone.

To access session archives, simulation participants (learners) are required to sign up and create their own, restricted, user account. This will allow, and at the same time limit, them to access any simulation session they participated in.
Once again, learners should not be added to the Simulator Properties / Sharing list - that would give them full access to all recordings of this simulator.

Does ALEX offer 2-factor authentication or single sign-on?

ALEX currently does not offer 2-factor authentication, nor single sign-on. Contact us if you require 2-factor authentication and/or open single sign-on services.

Are there automated reports containing attachments?

ALEX does not send any email with attachments and does not generate any report. ALEX does provide authorized and authenticated users a searchable list of past simulation sessions of their ALEX units but this is only accessible within the web app while logged in.

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