This article is cross-posted from edtechtimes.com, where I currently serve as editor-in-chief.
Seattle-based startup, Exo Labs, has launched a microscope camera that connects your classroom microscope to an iPad. This innovation turns a time-honored, traditional “wait-your-turn” lab experience into a shared learning experience that allows students to interact with the world under the microscope.
The Focus Microscope Camera incorporates the following classroom-friendly features into its design:
- App-based ability to take pictures, make measurements, add annotations to microscope images. Users can pinch and zoom to control their image view on the iPad.
- Versatility to adapt to different microscope eyepieces.
- Image sharing through projection, email or embedding in documents.
- Durable hardware construction for rugged classroom use.
- Charging capability for iPad during camera use.
- Interchangeable lenses for stand-alone use.
A single unit can be incorporated into microscope stations to simplify the unknowns of introductory microscope techniques. Imagine an intro lab without “drawings” of students’ eyelashes, or the tapping of pencils drawing “dots” from unfocused dirty optics.
Additionally, microscope-based labs tend to exclude partially visually-impaired students from participating in the full richness of the microscopic world. With this adaptive technology, students with light sensitivity no longer have to stare directly into a magnified microscope lamp, and students with other visual impairments can use the app in conjunction with iPad accessibility features to enhance their experience.
Exo Labs offers the Focus Microscope Camera on their website for $599, with an educator discount available by inquiry.
Xconomy and GeekWire provided early looks at the Focus Microscope Camera back in January, reporting on Exo Labs’ appearances in local and national startup competitions such as Northwest Entrepreneur Network First Look Forum, Seattle Angel Conference investment competition, and the MIT Enterprise Forum Northwest Startup Demo.
Sheri Cheng can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org