Crime scene investigators in action

Crime scene investigators in action

Wednesday, 22 August, 2012

In the near future, we will be able to feel, smell, hear, taste, and observe all the evidence that was present at a crime scene in virtual reality. In the new CSI Lab in The Hague, The Netherlands, different technologies are used to digitize and visualize a crime scene in all its glory. The technologies used in this remarkable lab are normally used outside the forensic field, but come together in this CSI Lab to resemble a crime scene including a street, a house as a crime scene and within this house, a bathroom, bedroom, and living room. All rooms are equipped with cameras to follow the forensic research process making this CSI lab very useful for educating and training forensic researchers.

Preserve a crime scene digitally

Another possibility is to freeze a crime scene by recording the events and saving them for later analysis. This allows the researcher to experiment with new techniques and find out how they can deliver a higher performance. By ‘freezing’ a crime scene, the scene can be reconstructed and a large number of hypotheses and witness statements can be tested.  

Observation software

The Observer XT serves as the central data integration software at The Hague. In The Observer XT, a wide variety of data (video streams, movement sensors, tracking data, physiology, etc.) can be synchronized and analyzed (Zimmerman et al., 2009). Zimmerman et al. conclude that the integration and synchronization of these multimodal signals in The Observer XT allows the user to draw a more complete picture of the phenomena under study. That is why the CSI Lab in The Hague includes The Observer XT as an integration platform. In this field, it is very important to combine different data streams to get a complete picture of behavior at a crime scene.

The Observer XT

Try The Observer XT for yourself

Request a FREE trial and see for yourself how easy behavioral research can be!

  • Work faster by automating tedious repeating tasks
  • Reduce costs by achieving more with less people
  • Get better data by using The Observer XT’s powerful analysis options

CSI The Hague

CSI The Hague is a research project in which 12 partners combine strengths to develop and build a forensic research lab which is one of a kind. CSI The Hague will stimulate innovation into forensic investigation and help to solve crimes.


  • Zimmerman, P. H.; Bolhuis, J. E.; Willemsen, A.; Meyer, E. S.; Noldus, L. P. J. J. (2009). The Observer XT: A tool for the integration and synchronization of multimodal signals. Behavior Research Methods41 (3), 731-735.