A versatile and customizable low-cost 3D-printed open standard for microscopic imaging | Nature Communications

Abstract:  Modern microscopes used for biological imaging often present themselves as black boxes whose precise operating principle remains unknown, and whose optical resolution and price seem to be in inverse proportion to each other. With UC2 (You. See. Too.) we present a low-cost, 3D-printed, open-source, modular microscopy toolbox and demonstrate its versatility by realizing a complete microscope development cycle from concept to experimental phase. The self-contained incubator-enclosed brightfield microscope monitors monocyte to macrophage cell differentiation for seven days at cellular resolution level (e.g. 2??m). Furthermore, by including very few additional components, the geometry is transferred into a 400 Euro light sheet fluorescence microscope for volumetric observations of a transgenic Zebrafish expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP). With this, we aim to establish an open standard in optics to facilitate interfacing with various complementary platforms. By making the content and comprehensive documentation publicly available, the systems presented here lend themselves to easy and straightforward replications, modifications, and extensions.

A microscope for everyone: Researchers develop open-source optical toolbox

“Modern microscopes used for biological imaging are expensive, are located in specialized laboratories and require highly qualified staff. To research novel, creative approaches to address urgent scientific issues—for example in the fight against infectious diseases such as COVID-19—is thus primarily reserved for scientists at well-equipped research institutions in rich countries. A young research team from the Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena, the Friedrich Schiller University and Jena University Hospital wants to change this: The researchers have developed an optical toolbox to build microscopes for a few hundred euros that deliver high-resolution images comparable to commercial microscopes that cost a hundred to a thousand times more. With open-source blueprints, components from the 3-D printer and smartphone camera, the UC2 (You. See. Too.) modular system can be combined specifically in the way the research question requires….”

Open Access Helper

“There are more than 25 million Open Access versions of otherwise “paywalled” scientific articles, however they are often not easy to find.

Open Access Helper for iOS & macOS is designed to help you get easy access to these documents, with a lot of help from some amazing APIs….

Open Access Helper is designed to make finding the best Open Access location easy. Whenever my app comes across a DOI, it will query the APIs of unpaywall.org & core.ac.uk to see if an Open Access copy is available elsewhere.

The App is free and Open Source and I have no intention to change that….”

Digital Open Science Tools: How to Achieve more Openness Through an Inclusive Design | ZBW MediaTalk

:Through their responsive design, digital Open Science tools promise to enable and simplify collaboration across disciplines, world regions and language groups. But how inclusive are these tools actually globally? Global means that they are equally open in low and middle income countries. Louise Bezuidenhout and Jo Havemann have examined 242 Open Science tools in terms of their geolocalisation, conditions and financing models. They have identified their weaknesses in terms of geographical openness and are developing ideas on how to make the Open Science ecosystem even more inclusive and a truly “unlimited digital commons”….”

Visualizing Altmetric data with VOSviewer – Altmetric

“Visualizations can make data come alive, uncover new insights and capture the imagination in a way that a spreadsheet never can.

Join Mike Taylor, Data Insights & Customer Analytics at Altmetric, and Fabio Gouveia, Public Health Technologist at Oswaldo Cruz Foundation in Brazil, for a demonstration of the exciting ways in which you can create compelling stories to explain the broader impact of academic work using the free-to-download VOSviewer from CWTS Leiden and data from Altmetric.

This actionable webinar will include an introduction to creating network diagrams with VOSviewer with your own data, extracting data from Altmetric tools and adapting it to be imported….”

Agency Open Access Policy | European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education

“The European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education (the Agency) acts as a platform for collaboration and information-sharing across a diverse range of countries, languages and contexts. The Agency is co-funded by the ministries of education in its member countries and by the European Commission via an operating grant within the European Union (EU) Erasmus+ education programme.

In 2020, the Agency adopted an Open Access (OA) Policy to maximise the reach and impact of Agency outputs. This policy affirms the Agency’s commitment to providing resources and tools for all relevant stakeholders, including educational policy-makers, researchers, school leaders, teachers, learners and families. The policy also clarifies usage and modification rights of Agency resources.

Agency resources are copyrighted but are available on the Agency website for the public to access, download and share. Certain resources, such as practical tools, are open source. The main distinction between open-source and open-access resources is that the latter cannot be modified without Agency approval.

As part of its commitment to open sharing, the Agency is also working to configure its own digital open access repository. Currently, users can search through Agency outputs by visiting the Agency’s publications listing page. This OA Policy will be updated as the Agency continues to enhance its open access offerings….”

Data could hold the key to stopping Alzheimer’s | Bill Gates

“Unfortunately, this siloed approach to research data hasn’t yielded great results. We have only made incremental progress in therapeutics since the late 1990s. There’s a lot that we still don’t know about Alzheimer’s, including what part of the brain breaks down first and how or when you should intervene. But I’m hopeful that will change soon thanks in part to the Alzheimer’s Disease Data Initiative, or ADDI….

I worked with a coalition of partners to create ADDI, because we believe that more data sharing will accelerate progress towards an Alzheimer’s breakthrough. To make this happen, ADDI created the Alzheimer’s Disease workbench.


This workbench hosts an open, global, and easy-to-use set of tools and resources. The goal is to simplify how researchers and data scientists around the world work together and share data, code, and knowledge in order to make advances in the field…..”

Unboxing the Journal Checker Tool | Plan S

“We are delighted that the cOAlition S funded Journal Checker Tool (JCT) is released today. Although it is in open testing mode, this is a big milestone for us: we’re releasing the tool now to give you, the Plan S community, an opportunity to road test it. 

The JCT is designed to support all researchers funded by a cOAlition S member in finding Plan S compliant “routes” through which to publish their research articles open access. …

The Journal Checker Tool (JCT) allows a researcher to enter the name of their funder, the institution they are affiliated with, and the journal to which they plan to submit an article. The tool then checks if this combination of funder, institution, and journal offers any route to compliance with Plan S. It simultaneously checks 4 options:


whether the journal is fully open access, in line with Plan S, 
whether it is included within a transformative agreement subscribed to by that particular institution, 
whether it is a transformative journal; or 
whether self-archiving is an available option, either via the publishers self-archiving policy or via the cOAlition S Rights Retention Strategy (RRS).  …

Where there are multiple routes to compliance available, it is for the researcher to choose which route to proceed by, although the JCT does visualise cOAlition S’s preference for routes that enable the Version of Record to be made open access….

The data used in the JCT calculation is large and distributed across the global network. The JCT relies upon data from the Directory of Open Access Journals, Shareyourpaper.org Permissions, the ESAC Transformative Agreement Registry, Crossref and the Research Organization Registry Community (ROR)



“DataSeer scans scientific texts for sentences describing data collection, then gives best-practice advice for sharing that type of data.

Researchers can use DataSeer to ensure that their data sharing is complete and follows best practice.

Funders, journals, and institutions can use DataSeer to find all of the data associated with a corpus of articles, or use it to promote compliance with their data sharing policies….”