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Microscopy. Affordable microscope for pigments identification


More info at:

http://chsopensource.org/2013/01/30/an-affordable-microscope/

I have often been asked what kind of micro­scope is good for art exam­i­na­tion. Briefly, you need a trinoc­u­lar polar­iz­ing micro­scope with epil­lu­mi­na­tion (from the top) and trans­mit­ted illu­mi­na­tion (light from the bot­tom). I used to work in Brook­lyn with the glo­ri­ous polar­iz­ing micro­scope Nikon OPTIPHOT 66. Mov­ing back home in Italy I needed to buy an afford­able micro­scope. I had no time to look for a used good micro­scope. So, I even­tu­ally turned to eBay and bought a bud­get micro­scope. It was so cheap and I was really think­ing I were mak­ing a mis­take, wast­ing my money, just get­ting a toy. This blog is about my pos­i­tive sur­prise — I want share with you — for even­tu­ally get­ting a rea­son­able good micro­scope, good value for my money. Bot­tom line is that this kind of afford­able micro­scope don’t make up for a qual­ity one. I’m still on the look for another OPTIPHOT 66 but they can turn use­ful enough. This sys­tem I bought cost less than 00 with all the needed acces­sories. A qual­ity micro­scope even used with all the fea­tures said above would go for over 00. so, i thought it was worth a try.

So, for 00 I got a Polar­iz­ing Micro­scope with Epi and Trans­mit­ted illu­mi­na­tion (you need both, respec­tively for look­ing at cross-section and slide mounts). The Koehler illu­mi­na­tor for trans­mit­ted light feels really basic but it does its job The rotat­ing stage it’s not very easy to cen­ter — pretty rough move­ments — but after a while I man­aged to have it cen­tered. It has a set of objec­tives SEMI PLAN 4x, 10x, 40x. Eye pieces are both 10x and 15x so you get a total mag­ni­fi­ca­tion which is enough for the kind of tests you do on pig­ments. It is all metal con­struc­tion, though a bit rough over­all. For polar­iz­ing microscopy it has a rotat­ing ana­lyzer for both epi and trans­mit­ted light, and Gyp­sum & Mica Plates.It makes it easy to get pic­tures with its trinoc­u­lar Cam­era Port with 100% Light trans­fer and the 3 Mega Pixel USB Cam­era. Cam­era comes with its soft­ware but I pre­fer to use MICAM for all my imag­ing devices. For 00 this micro­scope really comes with every­thing you need for art examination!

Well, let’s see some pic­tures! First it’s nec­es­sary to cal­i­brate the sys­tem with a Stage Microm­e­ter Cal­i­bra­tion Slide.


Why Consider Buying A Used Microscope

While a brand new microscope will almost always be the best quality, they can often be prohibitively expensive, especially for the hobbyist user. Used microscopes can often offer an incredible value for money if you are willing to do some research and make sure that you are not buying a microscope that is broken or otherwise has limited functionality.

The Value of Purchasing Used Microscopes

Because microscopes lose a lot of value the moment they are unpacked, a lightly used microscope can be an excellent value proposition. A very high end microscope can go for half the price used, allowing an amateur user who wants more power to get a product normally far outside of their price range.

Before buying a new microscope, then, it’s a great idea to shop around the used microscopes market and see if you can either save some money or upgrade to a higher quality product on the same budget.

One great way to save money for the serious enthusiast is to buy a broken microscope and the parts to repair it. This can end up saving hundreds of dollars if you are up to the challenge. Fixing a microscope is not always easy, but for a serious enthusiast, it can be a fun project that ends up resulting in a much higher quality microscope than could have been purchased for the price of the broken product and parts.

However, it is important to be careful when selecting a used microscope, broken or not. Some microscope parts are difficult to find, meaning a broken microscope can turn into a hunt for the right piece. Others will be overpriced for how much work they require.

Overall, buying a used microscope, when approached cautiously, is a great way to save money on a quality product. If you are in the market for a microscope, it is definitely something to look into.


Understanding Online Identity Theft

When somebody steals your identity online they use your personal information to pretend to be you or assume your identity when transacting so that they can gain access into your resources, obtain credit under your name, or other services. If you are a victim of online identity theft you can lose all the resources that you have worked so hard for and you may also suffer the consequences of the actions done by the cybercriminal who stole your identity.

How do cyber thieves obtain your personal information?

Here are the most common ways that are used by cyber thieves when they want to gather personal or confidential information for online identity theft:

  • Some steal your personal information using malicious software or breaches in your browser security
  • Large scale online identity theft happens when someone manages to hack into computer networks and company database. This allows the hacker to acquire the personal information of clients, use it to steal their identity or sell the personal information for a profit.
  • Email phishing or sending emails or links which masks them as legitimate companies that will ask you to enter confidential information such as your credit card or social security number.
  • Getting personal information from published posts in social media sites.
  • Gaining access to victim’s emails and diverting the incoming emails to gain access into your personal and financial information. This is also done to divert bank or credit card statements of accounts that you are not aware of and delay your discovery of the unauthorized activity.
  • Gaining your trust and befriending you or somebody in your family through social media sites to trick you into giving out your personal and financial information.

How can you protect yourself now from online identity theft?

The ease at which people can now have access to the internet is increasing the chances of criminals to gain access to personal information to steal their identities. But there are ways for you to protect yourself from online identity theft. You should always be wary of sites that ask for personal information especially for your credit card and social security numbers. When purchasing online make sure that you only transact with legitimate sites to ensure the security of the information you provide. Monitor your bills, bank statements, and credit score for anything unusual. These things will surely give you a clue that somebody is possibly posing as you.

When using public internet connection from a laptop, tablet, or smartphone, it is a good idea to secure your connection with a VPN. A VPN is a virtual private network. It will protect the data you are transmitting through your WiFi connection.

Identity theft is a serious matter and you may lose all the things that you have worked for as well as the integrity of your name so ensure that you and members of your family are being smart when using online services and social media sites.