Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

NIA uses a web browser. Do I have to be connected to the web to use NIA?
No, you do not need an Internet connection. The Firefox browser on the NIA CD is used to navigate through files stored on the CD (or copied from there to your hard drive) so that you can explore connections between different parts of the material by means of hyperlinks.

After I have installed Firefox as part of NIA (NIA-Firefox), can I also use it as my regular web browser?
  • If you are using NIA version 2.0 or before on Windows, then No! You should not do so until you run the Windows Firefox User Profile Patch. Without running this patch, you run the risk of having NIA fail if you change NIA-Firefox's home page or preferences. You can use Firefox as your browser, just not NIA-Firefox which is customized for NIA.
  • Other versions of NIA, including the Mac version and NIA 2.0.1 for both platforms, will not conflict with your personal Firefox settings.
When I click the "Start the Simulation" button, what am I doing?
You are launching a set of panels and graphs from the version of the NEURON simulator on the CD. These files are specific for the particular tutorial you have chosen.

When I click Reset&Run there is no voltage change. What is wrong?
Unless you are in the Equilibrium Potentials tutorial, you probably forgot to insert a simulating electrode into your patch, axon or cell. Click the appropriate Stimulus Control button in the P&G Manager so as to open that panel. In the special case of the Equilibrium Potentials tutorial, you will only see lines at the values of ENa, EK, and the resting potential.

My simulation produces a trace that is uninterpretable—it certainly does not look like what the tutorial says I should expect. What is wrong?
You may have two or more Stimulus Control panels open by accident. Move one over and look underneath it.

My traces go off the plot. How can I replot them so they fit on the plot?
Put your cursor on the graph, click the right mouse button, and select View=plot from the submenu. The traces will be automatically scaled to fit the graph.

I have extra panels or graphs on the screen. What have I done wrong?
You may have double-clicked the buttons that bring up graphs or panels instead of single-clicking. Double-clicking will bring up the window twice. Alternatively, you may have multiple copies of NEURON running. This can happen if you fail to Quit a tutorial before launching another one. Make certain you Quit each tutorial before going to the next one.

I would like to move the labels to different positions on the graph. How do I do this?
With your cursor on the graph, click the right mouse button (or, on the Mac, the little box in the upper left corner of the graph) and select Move Text from the submenu. You can then grab the text with the cursor and move it.

Can I change the color or line width of the trace on a graph?
Yes. With your cursor on the graph, click the right mouse button (or, on the Mac, the little box in the upper left corner of the graph) and select Color Brush from the submenu. Select a color and line width in the pop-up menu by clicking its diamond and click the line to apply your selection. When you Quit the simulator for the tutorial, your changes will not be saved.

How does one right-click on a Mac one-button mouse?
Click the mouse while holding down the Control (ctrl) key.