MICSCAPE - Exploring the miniature world

Issue 241 : April 2016 (ISSN 1365 - 070x) Monthly, next issue May 13th 2016.

Photomicrography with an owner's cell phone. Image by Tom Jones.

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Micscape Editor:
David Walker

parent site coordinator:
Maurice Smith

Please do not contact the above for image permissions. Each article contributor retains the copyright to their material so should be contacted directly via the link in the relevant article. Thank you.

Comments on Micscape and contributions welcomed.
Contributions: Any modern format welcomed i.e. pdf. doc/docx with embedded images, or html + jpegs.

Cell phone still and video photomicrography: A deeper dive. Applications in outreach, educational and general microscopy - Tom Jones (USA) presents an extensive illustrated survey of both commercial and DIY approaches of using cell phones with or without adapters to engage people to the world of microscopy. PDF

My route to microscopy and crystal pictures - Theo Wyatt (UK) now 95, presents striking examples of images taken 50 years ago using crossed polars and shares aspects of his interests in microscopy.

Tuffen West: Among his fellow artists - Peter Paisley (Australia) describes and illustrates less well known aspects of the life and work of Tuffen West. DOC For optimal viewing please use a desktop screen with WP software that has a 'web layout' option to view DOC files. E.g. the freeware LibreOffice or OpenOffice.

Surfaces: Part 1 - tools - Richard Howey (USA) illustrates the striking textures and forms of common objects when viewed with incident illumination under the microscope.

Epi-illumination in brightfield - Alejandro Ariel Garcia Arriaga (Mexico) shares an ingenious but simple design for LED top lighting that can be fitted to an objective. PDF

Oak leaf galls. A simple none technical peep at some striking tree leaf galls - Paul James (UK) illustrates examples of these attractive growths.

Photoelasticity: DIY polariscope - Alejandro Ariel Garcia Arriaga (Mexico) describes and illustrates the use of a simple design for demonstrating the stresses in suitable plastic objects. PDF

Surfaces: Part 2 - specimens - Richard Howey (USA) illustrates the striking textures and forms of a selection of plant and animal specimens when viewed with incident illumination under the microscope.

A gallery of postage stamps and postal stationery showing aspects of Robert Hooke's and Antoni van Leeuwenhoek's work - David Walker (UK) presents examples.

    In focus:
    Added April 19th: Michael Davidson RIP.
    Michael Davidson will be a name familiar to many for his large part in creating one of the finest, if not a contender for the finest, optical microscopy resources on the web - 'Molecular Expressions'. For others who may also not have been aware, sadly he died aged 65 of lung cancer in December 2015. A fascinating article in the 'New York Times' summarises his many achievements including that he "contributed to Nobel Prize-honored research about the inner workings of cells".

    As Micscape Ed, I liaised with him a number of times and always found him very keen to support and recognise enthusiast level microscopy as well as the cutting edge microscopy that he was involved with. One of the pages I most enjoy on 'Molecular Expressions' is the in-depth exploration of how the toy Intel Play QX3 computer microscope worked, its optical performance and how it could be improved - a reflection of his interest in promoting microscopy at all levels.

    Quite a legacy that he's left for optical microscopy.

    David Walker

    Video websites such as YouTube continue to offer an expanding variety of resources related to macro and microscopy. Two excellent channels are shared below.

    Tiny World channel by Rubén Duro Pérez presents a striking selection of professional videos (15 at the time of writing) showing aspects of the macro and microscopic world around us. Thank you to Rubén for letting us know.

    iBiology Microscopy Course 'Bringing the world's best biology to you'. Over 70 videos up to 1 hour long have been offered to date. Professionally presented by experts, they discuss every aspect of optical microscopy. For further background on the course structure and directors, see the supporting website www.ibiology.org Thank you to Bill Resch and Yahoo forum correspondents for highlighting the series.


We are delighted to receive contributions small or large from microscopy enthusiasts whether a novice or expert. If you have an image, tip or article, why not share it, this magazine is what you make it!

Look for that elusive article on our site:
Micscape Magazine past issues online
(read articles online using the original illustrated index for each month).
Article Library (browse articles by category)
Automated Search (a search engine for keyword searches in all articles)
Contributor index (a list of all Micscape contributors to date)
News - special notices - misc.

External links. Below are some of our favourites, which includes sites with extensive links and/or resources for the optical microscopy enthusiast.

External Microscopy forums: Places to discuss the hobby or to raise queries.
forums, galleries, articles on macroscopy and photomicrography.
forum for both Quekett Microscopical Club members and other enthusiasts.

Yahoo groups: a 'P' denotes current and archived messages are public i.e. not limited to members.
Amateur Microscopy P (started November 2008)
Yahoo Diatom Forum P
Microscope P (>1500 members, very active)
P (started Apr 2005)
Wild M20 microscope
microcosmo (for Italian speaking enthusiasts)
CombineZ P stacking software forum created by the software's author

'Forum for marine, freshwater and terrestrial algae'. Access to Archives possible for non-subscribers.
Diatom-L 'Research on the diatom algae.' Access to Archives for subscribers only. Link was current March 2016. Many online diatom resources point to an outdated Indiana Univ. listserver. (With thanks to Rob Kimmich for the current link.)

Mikroskopie-Treff.de (Extensive German microscopy forum; some English categories.)
Mikrobiologische Vereinigung München e. V. Wide range of articles and resources in German.
Le Naturaliste French based forum and image gallery for micro / macro but open to non French speaking international contributors.


Other sites (also see Societies and Clubs page.)
Royal Microscopy Society Journal, 'infocus' and other resources for members and the community.
Quekett Microscopical Club Journal, Bulletin and meetings for members.
Light Microscopy Forum links and articles
Little Imp Publications public domain books collated by Steve Gill formerly on CD and now free on Micscape.
Mikroskop Museum German website with resources on microscopes / makers .
Molecular Expressions awesome optical microscopy resources
Dennis Kunkel's SEM images stunning images
Diatoms Ireland - resource site by Leszek Wolnik
Leitz museum an illustrated resource compiled by Robert Allen
Microbe hunter a free monthly microscopy enthusiast magazine edited by Oliver Kim
Microscopies online magazine and Forum for French speakers
Micrographia articles, projects for the enthusiast
Microscopy Today
journal with online archive
Modern Microscopy
online journal by McCrone Group
Fun Science Gallery projects, articles on optics
Independent Generation of Research (IGoR) - Wiki style resource for citizen scientists to share their work.
G. Couger's microscopy links extensive links
Lens On Leeuwenhoek - extensive resource online by Douglas Anderson
Collected Letters of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek ('Alle de Brieven ..') transcribed and free online at DBNL.
A Cabinet of Curiosities a resource on Victorian microscope slides by Howard Lynk
Klaus Kemp's 'Diatoms' website - offers regional strews and arranged prepared slides of diatoms, an 8 form test slide, radiolaria, insect scales etc and prepares arranged slides on commission.
www.viewsfromscience.com projects by Ely Silk e.g. chilled stage for crystal growth studies and LED fluorescence
'Diatoms Ireland' resource by Leszek Wolnik
Historical makers of microscopes and microscope slides Brian Stevenson's extensive resource .
Victorian slide makers
Cambridge rocking microtome resources including manual
www.willemsmicroscope.com Dutch enthusiast Willem Cramer's website
Stefano Barone's Diatom Shop sale of his own prepared and arranged slides of diatoms, radiolaria and forams.
Stefano Barone's 'Microworlds' blog regularly updated blog and diary where Stefano showcases and discusses the typical examples of the slides he has prepared.

Microscopy-UK and Micscape - established 1995
Micscape is a free magazine for enthusiasts funded by Microscopy-UK and dedicated to non-commercial microscopy.
© Onview.net Ltd, Microscopy-UK, and all contributors 1995 onwards. All rights reserved. Main site is at www.microscopy-uk.org.uk