Meet Magnifi, The World’s First iPhone Universal Photoadapter Case

22 04 2012

Have you heard of
if not, basically it’s a website where you propose a product and ask for backers to fund your idea. In return for pledges of money, the “backers” are rewarded with something in return. It’s like crowd sourced venture capitalism in a way. Lots of fun.

This is just one excellent example of what comes out of this site; this product is particularly relevant to pathologists. I would get one… If I had an iPhone… But maybe you do, in which case, it’s worth checking out!

Check out the abridged press release below. More pictures and videos if you follow the link.

Press release: Introducing Magnifi

Magnifi is the world’s first universal photoadapter case for the iPhone. Magnifi connects the camera on your iPhone 4 / 4S to your favorite optical instrument, allowing you to take pictures and video through the eyepiece. This includes binoculars, microscopes, telescopes and almost anything else with an eyepiece.

How it Works
To use Magnifi, simply slip your phone into the Magnifi case and drop it over the eyepiece. Using the built-in camera app, slide the case onto your eyepiece until the image border becomes crisp. Snap the latch closed to lock things in place, and you are ready to go!

Magnifi is a low maintenance afocal design, meaning there are no extra lenses to keep clean. Rather, it works by precisely aligning the iPhone’s camera with the optical axis of your existing eyepiece. Magnifi is a two-piece design. It’s case and eyepiece adapter are connected via Magnifi’s unique bayonet mount. To assemble, simply align the two colored dots, and twist counter-clockwise to lock. The bayonet mount gives Magnifi users instant interchangeability between their existing eyepiece adapters and any future supported phones within the product line. Can I get a high five from our future iPhone 5 owners in the audience? Magnifi is equipped with a safety latch below the phone’s dock connector that holds your iPhone securely in the case. The latch engages automatically with an audible click whenever you slide your phone into the case. Press down on the latch to release. Magnifi is made from impact-resistant Polycarbonate plastic. The same plastic that is used nearly all top-end phone cases. FeatherGlide design hugs your iPhone’s stainless steel band, leaving the glass on both the front and the rear of your phone touch free. In fact, Magnifi has ample room inside the case for both front and rear screen protectors.

World’s First
Magnifi is the world’s first iPhone universal photoadapter case, meaning it works on almost any optical instrument, and it is small enough to fit in your pocket. Photoadapter brackets have been around for a while, but they are all either too big to be a case that fits in your pocket, or they only fit a few eyepieces. Most brackets also have knobs or sliders that require endless fiddling to align the image. With Magnifi, we’ve eliminated all of that. Magnifi’s eyepiece adapter aligns your camera with the optical axis of the eyepiece automatically, and a simple latch locks everything in place.

Will Magnifi Work For Me?
Magnifi was designed to work with eyepieces that are 1in – 1.5in in diameter (25mm – 38mm). If your eyepiece has large eye seals, they must be removable. In order to align you phone’s camera with the eyepiece, Magnifi must be able to slide down over the eyepiece at least 1in (25mm) without obstruction. It is important that you measure your device before ordering, to know whether Magnifi will work for you. While Magnifi does fit some eyepieces outside of the range specified above, we chose a conservative set of specifications to ensure that our users will be happy with the Magnifi’s image quality.

Magnifi simplifies medical documentation and empowers quick informal consults. In clinical training, Magnifi eliminates constant swapping at the microscope, at the fraction of the cost of a multi-headed training microscope. It is a powerful tool for both Pathology and Telemedicine. … You can even use Skype or Facetime to stream live demos to your classroom projector.

Automatic Scale Bars: There’s an App for That…
All you need to get started is the iPhone’s built-in Camera App. However, so many people have been holding their phones up to the eyepiece, that there are a number of Apps designed for iPhone eyepiece photography. For starters, check out the eyeMicroscope app that let’s you add automatic scale bars to your images.

This project has reached its goal and will be funded May 4th.

Magnifi Kickstarter Product Page


Microscope Slide Business Cards

16 04 2012

This is too awesome not to pass along. And I plan on making my own as soon as I figure out how to…


Microscope Slide Business Cards.  Genius.

The idea was brought to life as a “viral” (ahem) marketing campaign by a French group, Enfants Terribles. The real name of the person is identifiable only under a microscope.

While these are obviously impractical to a degree, the coolness factor almost outweighs it for me.  If I got one of these at a conference, I’d definitely remember the booth better (take note vendors!).

Slightly relevant side note, I love creative business card designs.  Check out some more (non-pathology related) here.

Enough is Enough, Academic Journals!

27 01 2012


Slashdot Reports:

“The academic publisher Elsevier has attracted controversy for its high prices, the practice of bundling journals for sale to libraries and its support for legislation such as SOPA and the Research Works Act. Fields medal-winning mathematician Tim Gowers decided to go public with a blog post describing how he’ll no longer have anything to do with Elsevier journals, and suggesting that a public website where mathematicians and scientists could register their support for an Elsevier boycott would further the cause. Such a website now exists, with hundreds of academics signing-up so far. John Baez has a nice write-up of the problem and possible solutions.”

I’m not sure how much traction this will really have, but it may bring to light the fact that the academic journal business model is severely overdue for a revamp.  Frankly, it is absurd to charge $30-50 for a 3 page article, which, if you are not working in a large academic center, you have little access to otherwise.   Let alone the fact that the articles were submitted to them basically for free.

It is frustrating to watch history repeat itself constantly, and it is hard to not conclude that media corporations are fueled solely by greed.  We all want to make money; I get it.  I can also see how it might be easier to cling to an outdated business model rather than to innovate to keep pace with technology and the evolving needs of the customer.  Unfortunately, that is no excuse.

I am desperately hoping that what happened with Apple and music (and most recently, textbooks) and Amazon and leisure books will happen with academic journals.  In my opinion, revamping their business models has saved their respective industries.  My fear, however, is that academic journals will remain greedy and obstinate like newspapers and the movie studios who clearly just don’t get it.

While Gowers’ heart is in the right place, gaining real momentum may prove daunting.  Perhaps the only real way to light a fire under the collective rears of the publishers would be to get the support of major academic institutions, but this also may prove daunting for reasons any physician could readily guess.

Call me weird, but I think that potentially life-saving information should be open-sourced, otherwise one could go as far as to conclude that the academic journal co’s are putting prices on the heads of patients (I of course wouldn’t go that far, but one could I suppose…).  Also, I’d venture a guess that most doctors would innately choose to share information over holding it hostage for cash (aka I’d like to think that we are more Woznian than Jobsian).

I know I am not the only physician that thinks this way- a notable exception to this disturbing trend is The Journal of Pathology Informatics.  I don’t need to go on about what a quality journal this is, as anyone that reads this blog is surely familiar with it, but it is worth mentioning, that they get it right-  perhaps the best angle of attack should be to take back our articles and start distributing them ourselves. You don’t need a third party to peer review, publish and distribute your findings anymore.  Articles can be emailed for proofing and peer review and then published online for free.  Like YouTube did for musicians, you don’t need the backing of a mega-corporation to get the word out anymore.

Once we professionals as a whole realize this and become comfortable with the concept, the game is over, and if the publishers don’t get on-board and start updating their practices, they will be left in the dust.  My advice to them is to offer pdf articles for $1.99/article in a single, curated “store” because it is certainly more than the $0.00 they will get when we stop submitting articles to them.

Link to the Elsevier boycott page:




$44k to use an EHR iPad App? OK!!

28 07 2011

This has been all over the web today, just thought I’d pass it along.

DrChrono is an EMR iPad app from DrChrono, Inc. that has generated a lot of buzz recently.  Any practitioner who uses it in their office may qualify for up to $44,000 in stimulus money under the HITECH Act (the idea being that EHR’s save a ton of money- invest a little to save a lot).

So aside from the headline-grabbing statement, is the app any good?

I signed up and have poked around a bit, it’s REALLY interesting.  Well laid out, easy to use.  There’s text to speech, the ability to add pictures, bill the encounter, look up CPT codes, and even integrate with your Google Calendar.  Pricing varies from FREE up to $799/month (which really isn’t that bad, relatively speaking).

When I signed up, “Pathologist” was one of the selection choices, but as it’s written now, it doesn’t much cater to pathologists, but it could be tweaked to be pretty useful at sign-out!  Right now, I’ll use it as a CPT/ICD-9 dictionary, but I’ll keep playing around with it to see what else it could be used for on the lab side of things.

Here is a link to the deal on the deal.

Here is a link to the app.

The Brain of a Pathologist…

13 04 2011

Wordle is a website that generates word clouds based on whatever text you feed it.  Over the past 3 months, I’ve typed a 100,000 word Anatomic Pathology note-set in preparation for the boards.  When I pasted it to Wordle, this is what I got:

“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated” -Mark Twain

1 04 2011

It has been quite awhile since my last update, and for that, I do apologize.  There has been quite a bit going on in my life, both personally and professionally, since my last post, and, as a result 1xO has been simmering on the back burner.

The primary reason for such neglect has been a conscious decision to hunker down and begin the death march towards the AP/CP Boards (for which we finally have a date: May25/26) and 40 hour study weeks on top of 40 hour work weeks do not lend themselves to moonlighting as Chatty Cathys on the interwebs…

Come June, however, I do promise to be back, and with a vengeance at that.  There’s a lot of pent-up prose in this mind of mine that needs to be let out at some point!

So, if you still subscribe to 1xO, thank you very much for your patience; if you’ve left, well, then you won’t read this anyway… 😉

Until then, I leave you with a YouTube Video demonstrating how I would like to be signing out in the next 5 years, thank you in advance industry… 🙂  The video is actually hilarious, imho.  With the serious and silent pristine white-coated gentleman intently/creepily manipulate a slide of obviously normal cerebellum all at the same time demonstrating the power of multi-touch on a huge monolithic Rads-like light box.  Could you imagine singing out 150 cases propped up like that?? haha!

Journal of Pathology Informatics Blog is Live

2 11 2010

Apologies for my recent delinquency, I’ve been settling into board-studying-mode.

This announcement was too important to pass up, however:

The Journal of Pathology Informatics ( has just gone live with their blog (, now giving you multiple ways to access their content. In addition, you can find JPI articles in PubMed now as well.

A+ Job!

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