Microscopy is ubiquitous in biological laboratories. Practically speaking, many researchers learn how to image their samples, without necessarily understanding the theory behind the technology. For instance, do you know how your XY resolution changes with numerical aperture of the objective? (Do you know what “numerical aperture” is?) If you want to get a better handle on microscopy, you should definitely head over to the Olympus Microscopy Resource Center. This excellent website offers interactive tutorials, an extensive “microscopy primer” written by senior Olympus scientists, and even Java-powered virtual microscopes! There are entire sections devoted to topics such as the physics of light and color, microscopy basics, and special techniques. For visitors who are visually inclined, the digital image and digital video galleries offer stunning examples of microscopy at work!
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