Through the microscope

Posts tagged ‘microscopy’

Electromagnetic Spectrum

Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start….

I’m revising some basics so that I may become a better microscopist. Here is a lovely diagram of the electromagnetic spectrum. I’m sure most people are familiar with it. I intend to write rather more in future, because I learn best by writing, but I’m completely knackered so today I shall post only a picture taken from

Cute diagram isn’t it? I love the way they illustrate the relative sizes of the waves. 

To say I’m knackered is an understatement. I’m completely exhausted. I haven’t been sleeping at all well. I have one of those brains that doesn’t turn off easily and I have been reading obsessively. For the last few nights I have been unable to get to sleep for several hours after turning in because my mind is full of physics, microscopes, the history of microscopy and physics, polarized light, polarizing microscopes and illumination units.

One night I tossed and turned for several hours unable to get the images of lamp housings out of my head. Ah well, there are worse subjects to ruminate on, I’m grateful that I’m losing sleep over lamp housings, I could be fretting about where my next meal is coming from.

Live long and prosper!

I wish I were smarter

I know I’m pretty smart. I have a PhD in molecular biology and they don’t exactly give them away with cornflakes but I could be much smarter.

I’m nowhere near as clever as Stephen Hawking or Randy Schekman. Sometimes it bugs me, the microscope nerds on the nerd forum seem to know so much about everything. They are extremely pleasant, and patient, and generous with their time and knowledge but I would like to contribute more.

I’d like to be able to answer a question with total confidence instead of having to post an “I may not quite have understood this correctly” disclaimer.

It’s that feeling you get of taking a lot and giving very little back. I ask questions but I rarely have any answers for newcomers. I want to be able to help a bit. If it wasn’t an online forum I would make the coffee and hand out biscuits – anything to be useful.

I know I haven’t been playing with microscopes for very long and I know that I will learn and that eventually I will become wise but right now I feel a bit stupid.

It would be easier to be very stupid. People who are very stupid never seem to realise it. Ignorance is bliss as the saying goes. I am always acutely aware of how much I don’t know.


The world map quilt is finished, I’m almost finished with the bag and I have a new stereomicroscope.

I have so many wonderful things to do. 

I plan to make more bags, the first one has come out so well, I’m delighted. My lovely neighbour, who helps me out and keeps me sane,  wants a bag, so she shall have a bag. I’m also planning on making a quilt featuring narrow boats. Another friend of mine has a narrow boat. He took me and my family out for a pootle on it last week and it has inspired me. I plan on doing the water bargello style and putting a foundation pieced narrow boat in the water. Perhaps I’ll add some appliqué flowers in a traditional narrow boat painting style.

I absolutely have to play with my microscope soon too, so many wonderful toys to play with. So little time!

Fortunately the week after next is half term break. I get a week off. I can definitely fit some microscopy in then.


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