Category Archives: Microbiology

The study of microscopic plants, animals, and cells.

Another iPhone Microscope Tool


This instructable will show you how to build a stand for about $10 that will transform your smartphone into a powerful digital microscope. This DIY conversion stand is more than capable of functioning in an actual laboratory setting. Continue reading…

Posted in Biology, Botany, DIY, Makers and Making, Microbiology, Microscopy, Projects, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Citizen Science Musings: Plankton Hunters

In the case of plankton, it is particularly appropriate, since where life on earth in general, and marine life in particular is concerned, one could hardly get more basic than plankton. Without it, there would be no sea life. There would also be much less oxygen for land-dwelling organisms. Continue reading…

Posted in Biology, Botany, Citizen Science Musings, Climate, Education, Environment, General Interest, Marine Biology, Microbiology, Microscopy, Nature Study, Oceanography, Science Education | Leave a comment

NSTA’s “Citizen Science” Brings Biology to Life


The editors of NSTA’s new book Citizen Science have a straightforward goal: to inspire you to engage your students through public collaboration in scientific research—also known as citizen science. Continue reading…

Posted in Biology, Botany, Breaking News, Education, Entomology, Environment, Microbiology, Nature Study, Ornithology, Publishing, Science Education, Wildlife | Leave a comment

Evolution as a tool at Burlington Maker Faire 2013

This project is an open source reactor based on a design out of Harvard that uses Arduino micro controllers, open computer vision systems, and reclaimed scrap materials in order to accelerate the evolution of viruses for scientific purposes. Continue reading…

Posted in Amateur Science, Best Practices, Biology, DIY, Genetics, Invention, Makers and Making, Microbiology, Open Science, Open Source, Science Fair, Tools, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Instant Microscope: Just add water

While reading about the history of single-lens microscopes, I came across an interesting design called the water drop microscope. In these instruments, a single drop of water suspended beneath the perimeter of a small hole forms the lens. Continue reading…

Posted in Biology, DIY, History of Science, Instrumentation, Microbiology, Microscopy, Nature Study, Optics, Tools | Leave a comment

The Challenge of Grinding a Miniature Biconvex Lens


In this article I describe how I made a 0.75 mm diameter biconvex lens using ordinary material and common resources available to amateurs. Continue reading…

Posted in Amateur Science, DIY, Instrumentation, Machine Shop, Measurement, Microbiology, Microscopy, Optics, Tools, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Scientists Create Star Trek style ‘tractor beam’

BBC Photo

Practical scientific theories on real-life tractor beams have been developed since 1960, but it is thought this is the first time a beam has been used to draw microscopic objects towards the light source. Continue reading…

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CSL Provides Unprecedented Access to Scientific Literature

The Citizen Scientists League is providing access to thousands of scientific and academic journals and other publications. CSL is proud to be the first such organization to offer this kind of service. Continue reading…

Posted in Amateur Science, Astronomy, Biology, Botany, Breaking News, Chemistry, Climate, Community, CSL News, Education, Energy, Engineering, Entomology, Environment, Evolution, Experimentation, Exploration, General Interest, Genetics, Geology, History of Science, Invention, Magnetism, Makers and Making, Marine Biology, Mathematics, Medicine, Meteorology, Microbiology, Microscopy, Nature Study, Observation, Oceanography, Ornithology, Paleontology, Phenology, Physics, Publishing, Research Tools, Rocketry, Science Education, Science Fair, Space, Tools, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Citizen Scientists Successfully Fund Groundbreaking Startup to Sequence their Microbiomes


The project has garnered over $120,000 in crowdfunding and over 1,000 participants, more than four times the number of participants included in the NIH-funded Human Microbiome Project, which was completed in 2012. Continue reading…

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The Nematode

Figure 1. Nematode imaged with a Leica CME microscope (40x objective) and Moticam 1000 camera with 2x transfer lens for an effective magnification of 800x. Microphotograph by Bill Dembowski.

I have developed an interest in airborne life forms and keep a 20-gallon tub of rain water in my backyard to catch whatever falls out of the air. One of the more numerous visitors to my tub are nematodes. Continue reading…

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