On Wednesday I joined about 20 other Apperian’ites to volunteer for Boston's 4th
annual Tech Gives Back. Before I get into the details, let me tell you one thing… this event, the whole day, was a blast!
The event is put on by TUGG, Technology Underwriting Greater Good
, and brings together companies, investors and entrepreneurs from the Boston tech industry to give back to the city. They do this by setting up 50 different volunteer sites around Boston, each with different projects put together by non-profits.
Apperian was assigned to a site provided by MassChallenge in the Seaport District where we, among 150 other volunteers from various Boston-based companies, arrived to at 10am with no idea what we would be doing. Soon after we arrived, Dave Swindell, Executive Director at the non-profit Science from Scientists
stood before us asking for a small group to help build microscopes…. How cool right?! Needless to say a fellow Apperian’ite stepped up to the plate, and I quickly followed.
I was very happy I did because these microscopes are really awesome, as is the non-profit, Science from Scientists! The microscopes are completely a DIY project, and we built them from start to finish!
We drilled the holes (yes, some of us got to use power tools!)...
And… the final product
: a fully functioning Smartphone to digital microscope!
How does it work? Easy. You screw a hole in the top piece of plexiglass and put a standard acrylic lens (costs about $1.00) in it. You then lay your smartphone on the plexiglass, lining your camera lens up with the acrylic lens. The bottom piece of acrylic is adjustable and holds the specimen you would like to view. In the picture, we use a piece of spinach! Once in focus the smartphone screen will display an image of the specimen through the microscope allowing you to zoom in closer and even take a picture! Super cool, and super fun project, event, and whole day.
Special thanks to TUGG for putting on the event and to Dave at Science from Scientists for such a great project!