Foldscoping on the streets of Addis Ababa

Sipping from boiling pots of coffee on cobbled meandering streets, with a coffee shop every step along – is not a description of some old block in Paris but the heart of Addis. Addis Ababa – the capital city of Ethiopia, the land that actually discovered Coffee and shared it with the world. A country…

Mystery embryos in a jelly sack

At a fountain inside the UNCC campus in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) – I found a floating jelly in the water. It was a big surprise to see for a simple reason – I have never seen an egg sack that feels like jelly that does not belong to a marine invertebrate. But here I was…

Foldscope at Fab15 community meeting

It was an absolute blast to spend some time with the FabLab community at El Guona, Egypt off the coast of Red Sea – with 400 participants from around the world. The FabLab network has been part of my past life – and it was wonderful to reconnect with old friends (Sherry, Nadya and others)…

Do bacteria collide with each other while swimming?

On a hot day in a busy swimming pool, I am often clumsily found paddling my way bumping into people. So it’s obvious to ask – do bacteria swimming around in water collide with each other. This is not such a simple question after all. Offcourse it should depend on how many bacteria are present…

Foldscoping from Cold Spring Harbor Lab #CshlComp meeting

Sometimes, thinking hard about models and theoretical frameworks for cell biology – our mind can drift to go and see what’s lurking right outside the conference room. I am at Cold Spring Harbor Lab at an incredible computational and modeling meeting; and I could not stop myself to take a walk At night and explore…

Embryonic development of human lice

If you have kids, you probably already know all about lice. Or maybe you think you know all about lice – and you just want to crush it. But wait, just wait a second, pull out your foldscope next time anyone talks about lice and give it a good strong look. And you can crush…

Magic in a bottle

In rushing through life; we often forget to see how strange and wonderful and magical our world actually is. With videos and photo capturing technologies – some of that magic can be shared. But it can not always be experienced the same way when you hold it in your hand. Today is one such example…

A flagellate morphing it’s shape – Distigma proteus

What an incredible flagellate did I stumble upon Today, while wandering through my favorite hiding spot; a swamp. I believe this is Distigma proteus – what’s remarkable is the body shape change which was continuous. If you watch is carefully; a remarkable transformation is happening. I am trying to isolate as many of them and…

Spittle bugs under a foldscope

I took these videos almost 3 years ago, but somehow forgot to post them here. Here are live spittlebugs that make bubbles, lots and lots of bubbles! And here is the same bug; but filmed at 240fps. Those are some fast bubbles being formed. Cheers Manu

Foldscoping at Beach in Ventura, CA

The joy of sharing foldscope never wears out on me. Had a really fun moment with the incredible Noa from UCSB, Tyler Ross from Caltech and Kranti from UC Berkeley. The smiles truly tell a special story. In the conversation, I also proposed a little project to explore whet determines the frequency of gill beating…

Foldscoping snow

What a way to start 2019 – it was snowing all morning; and I tried to foldscope snow. Here is a quick tutorial. It’s beautiful how the snow flakes melt! More soon. Enjoy the video. Now, here is a puzzle. Why does the snow flake melt as soon as we start imaging them. Leave comments…

Symbiosis continued – what’s inside a gut of a termite

We just finished running a foldscope training workshop for Exploratorium staff; allowing them to bring microscopy access to people outside the Exploratorium. I am thrilled we got to play with a termite and finally imaged ciliates living in the gut. Enjoy the video – I will post more videos from field collected samples. If you…

Dinoflagellates-cnidarian symbiosis in an upside down jellyfish – Cassiopea xamachana: Or “how to do science at a poster session and find a real life popeye”

I had the incredible fortune to meet a phenomenal postdoc Dr A. Ohdera at the lab of Dr. Y.Zheng (Carnegie institute, Baltimore) at ASCB (American Society of Cell Biology) 2018 meeting (poster number B786). Amongst thousands of posters – what struck me is that Dr Ohdera – who studies a unique symbiotic relationship between a…

How to geo-tag your Foldscope post using novo-map plugin

All, We have been planning to enable the mapping feature on all foldscope posts for a while – and I finally got around to testing some plugins; so now all of us can mark exact location of where the samples were collected. That’s important, when you discover a new species, new habitat, want to run…

Moment of uncovering root Rhizogenesis at Tamales Bay, Marconi Center beach

I love foldscope moments – since things happen that are hard to predict. This is a collection of Stanford faculty (from Biology, Bioengineering, civil etc.) all hanging out at the beach Foldscoping – and suddenly we uncover a beautiful phenomena. Sorry for the clicking sound on my phone; but enjoy the “aha” moment. Here is…

Micro snails in Puerto Rico

4C2FFA7E-12B4-47F5-95F3-22C80DFEF3EE Manu, elimaris, Damian saw a micro-snail in the oceans of Puerto Rico. If anyone who studies micro snails can identify this species – please post a comment below. We will keep searching for more snails – because our ocean waters are beautiful. Cheers MED

Joy of Foldscoping on a boat

Thibaut (foldscope super user) and I had a chance to spend some time in India; taking foldscope to some extreme locations. I have been meaning to write a detailed post on all our adventures in India – which I will get to soon – but in the mean time, enjoy this pleasing video of a…

Marine bacteria in a night Plankton tow

Ocean is vast and mysterious in so many ways. Sometimes I find it hard to just imagine such a large interconnected ecosystem with all its living abundance. Combine that with its inaccessibility simple by being completely under water. You can take a casual stroll in a rainforest day in and day out – to be…

Foldscope at Morgan State, Historically Black College

I want to quickly introduce the foldscope community to two remarkable individuals I met at Microscopy and Microanalysis 2018 meeting in Baltimore. I was giving a morning talk and accidentally I flipped to see the abstract book a night before. Hidden in that book, I was thrilled to find an abstract from Dr Frank and…

Science at Bar SZ Ranch

I had the privilege of staying two days at a ranch, with our host family at Bar SZ Ranch in San Benito County in California (https://www.barszranch.com). It’s an incredible place to just get lost in the woods, surrounded by farm animals and live a farm life for a few days. What I was delighted to…

Foldscope on Tara

I had an incredible time staying a short time on Tara. What an incredible gift to the scientific community. Wonderful boat filled with wonderful people. Got a chance to train kids and Tara staff on Foldscoping. The boat is off to Mexico and Panama; with an incredible diversity of oceanic life. Thibaut from the lab…

TeamFoldscope heading out to Latin America

Friends from Latin America, After a month of planning; Team Foldscope is off to Latin America. This has been a long time coming; with partners around the world. It just took us some time to gather together the resources to make a big trip (thanks for all the support). In this first round, we will…

Watching individual bacteria in a 300 year old pond

Sometimes; wonder awaits you in seemingly quiet places. Walking up to a 300 year old pond that is fed by a stream under water is one such quiet place. But a lot is happening in this ecosystem that’s right below the surface. A quick drop of water fro here into my foldscope – and you…

Diversity that boggles our minds – polychaete worms

Photo: “A variety of marine worms”: plate from Das Meer by M.J. Schleiden (1804–1881). In 15 minutes of looking at the same rock I collected on the beach, I found more than 12 different species of polychaete worms. Some of them were swimmers; wriggling in the water column. Some of them had fans, others appendages…