A Microscope to show you the Microscopic World...

... like never seen before!

I am raising money for a very good microscope which I will use to make high-quality pictures and video clips of the microscopic world. These pictures and video clips will then be published online under the Creative Commons License for everyone free to use. My vision is to create a very large image library for public use.

You can visit the site here: MicroWorldArchive 

You, publishing companies, broadcasting corporations, private people, video creators, universities, schools, educators, researchers, companies, nature lovers, and of course amateur microscopists, scientists - everyone (even you!) who wants to use these pictures are then free to do so under the Creative Commons License. The idea is to build an image database of micrographs and videos for the public to use both commercially and non-commercially. These pictures can therefore also be used in Wikipedia, for example. The microscope would therefore help in improve public awareness of the microscopic world.



I want to make the microscopic world accessible to a wider audience. In the past I have been approached a few times by publishing companies, who requested permission to use some of my images that I have taken. I have always granted the permission free of charge. This shows that there is a need for such images. I therefore want to create, with your support, a sizable image and video library that serves the public interest.

Why is this microscope expensive? It contains special optics that are not available in other light microscopes. It is only offered by a few companies. The technique is called “Differential Interference Contrast” or DIC. It produces very attractive images that also look three dimensional. By funding the project I could make these images available for the public. One possible microscope is the Olympus BX53, but I am looking for other options as well. The list price of this microscope is EUR 27000.

Technical specifications
I have obtained several offers so far from different companies. I am currently considering the following microscope:
Olympus BX53 LED
Planfluorite objectives 4x, 10x, 20x, 40x, 100x
DIC condenser and prisms
Photoadapter

More information can also be found in this video:



What if the Gofudme goal is not reached? Then I will use the funds anyway for this website or other microscopy related activitites that are in the public interest. But I will not give up too quickly.

Why do you publish the images in the Creative Commons License? Because I want that the public benefits from them, to promote microscopy and I want that people become more interested in science. The images in Wikipedia, for example, are also published under this license and can be freely used.

Who I am

Now a few words about myself. My Name is Oliver and I live in Austria, Europe. On my Youtube Channel I always introduce myself as "Microbehunter". I am married and have two children. I have a Master's Degree in Microbiology from the University of Vienna in Austria. My thesis was about "Systematic Bacteriology", which is the study of the relatedness of different bacteria. There was a lot of analytical chemistry involved, and in my view, not enough microscopy. As a graduation present to myself, I therefore bought myself a microscope, one that I have been using up to this point for over 22 years and one that I am using to make Youtube videos. This microscope, unfortunately, is not sufficient anymore for this project.

After I completed my study, I decided to go into teaching and I have been a Biology teacher now for over 20 years. I have obtained an additional degree in Computer science and in Biology education. I have instructed my students how to use microscopes and have also been involved in the purchasing decisions for the microscopes of our school. I am happy to say, that I was able to motivate many of my students to study science and medicine. I enjoy teaching very much and I now want to pass on my passion for Biology and specifically the microscopic world to a wider public as well - also to those people who do not own a microscope. I think that such an image and video library of the microscopic world also serves as an important public education tool.

What I have done so far

I understand that asking for so much money from the community might be considered a bit bold. To show that I am serious about this project, I want to show you what I have been doing up to this point (links are at the bottom):

Magazine: A few years ago I published a free online microscopy magazine (they can be downloaded freely as PDFs).
Youtube Channels: After some years I found out that it is easier to reach a wider audience by Youtube and I switched over to produce Youtube videos. I currently have three Microscopy/Microbiology related Youtube Channels. It makes me happy to say that these channels motivated more and more people to pick up microscopy as a hobby.
Helping others buy microscopes: I receive a constant stream of emails where people ask me for advice about the purchase of microscopes, which I answer. The increase in emails makes it difficult to answer them, however. I am therefore working on a (free) guide on how to buy microscopes, to help beginners make a purchasing choice.
Microscopy Forum: I also am operating one of the largest amateur microscopy forums where beginners and more experienced microscope users can exchange information, ideas, and live their passion.
Website: On the website I have published many articles and blog posts relating to microscopy.

I want to add, that I will myself put money that I get from Youtube monetization, the Amazon affiliate webshop as well as my Patreon supporters (A big thank you!!) into this project (if they agree to this), but these are currently by far not enough to cover the expenses of the microscope. This is the reason, why I decided to start this GoFundMe campaign.

Future Plans
I hope that my vision of documenting the microscopic world will become much larger than myself with contributions and support by many people, also those who are experienced in specific fields. Why not make a freely accessible photo identification system of water organisms? Or a database of histological specimens for students who study medicine? An image database of microscopic parasites - for reference purposes? The possibilities are endless... But let's take it one step at a time.

A big THANK YOU!

Oliver ("Microbehunter")

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My Projects:

 Website
Microscopy Forum
Microbehunter main channel
Microscope advice Channel
Microbe Talk Channel  - I talk about Bacteria and other microorganisms
Microscopic Mysteries  - Guess the specimen!
PDF Magazine up to 2017

Donations

  • MICHAEL OKEEFE 
    • €13 
    • 12 d
  • Mihalache Ionut Marius 
    • €10 
    • 14 d
  • Anonymous 
    • €10 
    • 15 d
  • Anonymous 
    • €100 
    • 16 d
  • Dave Hafner 
    • €23 
    • 16 d
See all

Organizer

Oliver Kim 
Organizer
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