Foldscoper of the Month
Congratulations to our June Foldscoper of the Month, Dr. Manu Prakash! 🎉
Manu is well known to the Foldscope Microcosmos community through many of his posts and community workshops. While recently traveling for fieldwork through Senegal, throughout June, Manu published diverse and dynamic posts on Microcosmos.
Not only was Dr. Prakash the #1 active user for the month of June, but he is also the co-inventor of Foldscope!
Manu Prakash is an Associate Professor with Tenure in the Department of Bioengineering at Stanford University, where he runs a curiosity-driven research group (Prakash Labs) in the field of Physical Biology with the goal to elucidate physical design principles in biology at organismic, cellular, and molecular scales and Frugal Science - a framework for building and designing cost-effective solutions for citizens to directly engage in the process of science and tackle challenges in global health and environmental monitoring.
Dr. Prakash grew up in a home where learning was quite important. His mother always gave him free rein to explore and invent. He believes his unstructured curiosity-driven learning time was pivotal in his path to becoming a scientist and inventor.
Through his experiences of growing up in India, traveling the world, and being trained at Harvard and MIT, Dr. Prakash noticed the wide disparity of access to science and scientific equipment.
Dr. Prakash is an inventor at heart and has an explicit mission to make science accessible for everyone by providing low-cost technological solutions to problems in global health. Along with his invention of Foldscope, he has also invented a paper-based centrifuge (paperfuge), a $5 chemistry lab, a computer that works by moving water droplets in a magnetic field, a flow-through imaging system designed for sailing community (planktoscope), a cellphone app for detection of mosquito species, molecular and imaging for automated detection of malaria, schistosomiasis and COVID19 and a smartphone device that helps diagnose oral cancer. See latest work from his lab at: http://prakashlab.stanford.edu/
Out of 2 billion children in the world, about half, or 1 billion, live in poverty. That means half of the world’s future talent has no access to science. This is why the work that Dr. Prakash is doing is so important so that we can enter a new era of science where citizens globally will be engaged directly in observing and deciphering the world around them.
To be considered for this distinguished title, you must be a part of the Microcosmos Community and be the #1 active user— with the highest quality and quantity of posts— during that month. Each Foldscope comes with a unique ID if you have not already, you can use it to register to our online community platform - Microcosmos.
Check out Manu's most recent trip to Dakar, Senegal on Microcosmos, where he handcrafts a plankton net from scratch and finds a beautiful copepod!
Check out Foldscope's Youtube & Blog for Tips & Inspiration 🧠
Foldscope at Home is our special series where we take a look at everyday explorations you can put under the Foldscope.
Check out this exciting Foldscope at Home video of a tiny creature you might see lurking throughout your home 🐜 or get a closer look at the beautiful crystals of baking soda.
Foldscope's NEW Fast & Curious Tour 🚗
Now introducing, Foldscope's Fast & Curious Tour, where our Director of Strategic Partnerships, Dr. Paola Moreno-Roman will be traveling around the US conducting FREE Foldscope demos.
These are 90-minute demos with a maximum amount of 10 attendees. Each participant will receive a free assembled Foldscope and will learn how to use it, prepare samples, and couple it with their phones.
The following dates are where Paola will be for August and September. If you are in any of the corresponding areas and are interested in scheduling a free demo email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Foldscope Demo at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve Team
Foldscope had a blast at the Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve in Woodside, California this month to hold a free Foldscope Demo. Participants received a Foldscope and got to explore a variety of samples including a mysterious microorganism that was found in water samples from the lake nearby.
Check out our Jasper Ridge Instagram post to see the mysterious microorganism swimming! ➡️➡️➡️