Our history

Noldus Information Technology was established in 1989 by Lucas Noldus, founder and CEO of the company. Lucas holds a Ph.D. degree in animal behavior from Wageningen University. During his research on the behavioral ecology of parasitoid wasps, he developed the first version of what later became The Observer software package.

The program was unique in that it offered a general-purpose tool for behavioral recording and analysis, independent of the organism being studied. This tool attracted attention from researchers within and outside the field entomology and triggered the start of a company for the development of software tools for behavioral research.

1990: Launch of The Observer XT

The Observer, launched in 1990, was the first in a series of successful products, including EthoVision, PhenoTyper, DanioVision, DanioScope, UltraVox, Pocket Observer, Theme, uLog, CatWalk, FaceReader, Viso, and ErasmusLadder. The introduction of the PhenoTyper product line in 2004 marked our debut as a hardware manufacturer.

Over the years we have evolved from solely a software vendor into a provider of integrated systems and solutions, comprised of software, hardware, and services. Because of our partnerships with leading suppliers such as Tobii, Biopac, Ugo Basile, and MindWare, we can supply complete integrated lab set-ups or multi-room research facilities. From single software licenses and handheld computers to turn-key usability labs and behavioral neuroscience labs, you can count on our experience.

More and more, we are offering consulting services and custom development services. We can advise and assist you throughout all stages of your research: from designing and carrying out the experiment to coding your observations, analyzing data, and reporting the results. We can either use your lab or provide the equipment you need for your research.

2011: Noldus InnovationWorks

In 2011, Noldus InnovationWorks was established. This is our research and innovation laboratory and has 10 permanent staff members along with a variable number of post-docs, Ph.D. fellows, M.Sc. students, and visiting scientists. Noldus InnovationWorks pursues and coordinates partnerships with leading researchers and entrepreneurs in academia, government and industry, in order to develop the next generation of breakthrough technologies.

In 2015 Noldus celebrated its 25th anniversary with a family barbecue, employee outing, and anniversary symposium. This symposium was dedicated to measuring behavior and included renowned Dutch speakers and topics related to the various markets Noldus has operated in since its start in 1989.

More than 100 invited guests, project partners, and long-term relations attended the high-profile symposium in Hotel De Wageningsche Berg. Lucas Noldus concluded the symposium with a speech on measuring human and animal behavior, and what the future of behavioral research can hold. From new instruments and software to support new test paradigms, optogenetics and precision livestock farming to smart tracking and smart houses.

2019-2020: 30th Anniversary

In 2019 Noldus celebrates its 30th anniversary.