the blog of a geek physician and mother


Build your own digital microscope

Digital microscopy systems can cost thousands of dollars but a very useful model can be assembled by using one decent compound microscope and consumer products that cost less than $150. Many hospitals and universities have retired micorscopes that can be adapted to this task. The plans found here show how to modify a commonly found microscope.


A DIY microscope with electronic focusing

Jean-Marie Cavanihac has put together a handly guide to turning a webcam and a lens from a discarded CD player into a focusing microscope


Principles of pulse oximetry

Pulse oximetry notes on Scribd gives a clear overview of what you need to buld your own.


Helping horses gallop

Using inertia sensors Andrew Spence has show how the jockey smooths and helps the motion of the racehorse. Watch the movie here.

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Hand Dynamometer

This simple hand dynamometer is made by attaching a strain gauge to an easily available Hand Exercise Grip.

"A hand dynamometer is used to measure grip strength. The measurement of grip strength allows for comparison of left and right hand grip and muscle fatigue. Muscle fatigue can be measured by comparing the difference in hand strength measurements taken before and after an experiment has been performed. In sports, handgrip strength is important for those games where the hands are used for catching, throwing or lifting. In geriatric, one study found that poor hand strength can be used to predict disability in older people."

From Emant Pte Ltd which has several other cool projects to check out.

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ECG with software noise reduction

Scott Harden has a great section on his blog about his DIY ECG and heart rate analysis. He lets the software GoldWave clean up the noise in the signal and uses nonshielded electrodes.

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DIY pressure sensing

This is a useful component to build for all sorts of projects. For instance, stuck to the seat of ones pants and then recording how equal ones body weight is distributed across the back of your horse.


Computerized Dynamic Posturography Validity & Efficacy Studies

A rather nifty table of applicable studies on posturography to be checked out before bulding your own.


A simple electronic stethoscope

Vik Olliver har simple instructions on how to hack an "iSpy spy ear" to make an electronic stethoscope which not only has the added advantage of letting you turn up the volume and eliminating tube rub that it also allows you to look at the waveform of the sounds through your computer.



This is a wonderful mindmapping app that for the last half decade has replaced Mindmanager as my brainstorming and notetaking tool. It is superfast and has a small footprint. I couldn´t live without it and can´t recommend it more highly!

This is the introduction from the wensite on Sourceforge:

"So you want to write a completely new metaphysics? Why don't you use FreeMind? You have a tool at hand that remarkably resembles the tray slips of Robert Pirsig, described in his sequel to Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance called Lila. Do you want to refactor your essays in a similar way you would refactor software? Or do you want to keep personal knowledge base, which is easy to manage? Why don't you try FreeMind? Do you want to prioritize, know where you are, where you've been and where you are heading, as Stephen Covey would advise you? Have you tried FreeMind to keep track of all the things that are needed for that?"

FreeMind has made it as the finalist for the 2009 Community Choice Award in the category "Most likely to change the way you do everything"

Freemind can be made portable

Get FreeMind