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Magnification Module Help

Please refer to the following instructions when attempting to operate the interactive Magnifying Virtual Microscopy Java tutorial:

  • The most important fact to remember is to allow the Java applet sufficient time to download. This can range from 5-10 seconds on a fast T1 connection to a minute or two on a slow or noisy 14.4 Kbaud modem connection. The module will not operate properly until both the Java applet and the corresponding default sample image are completely downloaded.

  • In general, browser instances tend to become corrupted over time and often operate in a very unpredictable manner. If you have trouble downloading the entire applet, try the following in descending order:

    • Hold down your "Shift" key and click on the reload button on the menu bar at the top of your browser.

    • If this doesn't help, go to your browser preferences and flush both the disk and memory caches.

    • Still having problems? You may have to kill your browser and reload it.

    • Sometimes the browser files on your hard drive can become corrupted, leading to erratic operation of the software. The best cure for this is to reinstall the browser software either directly over the corrupted files or after completely uninstalling the software. If you choose to do this, we advise first visiting the Website of your browser manufacturer and upgrading to the latest version.

    • As a last resort, try rebooting your computer. We have tested the modules extensively and they will load properly under normal conditions.

  • After the applet and image are downloaded, all of the controls will be active. If you decide to choose another sample, the download will be faster because the applet is already loaded and only the new image must be loaded. This will take about 1-3 seconds on a T1 connection and about 5-10 seconds on a modem connection.

  • Each separate magnification (25x, 50x, 100x, etc.) requires the download of a new image, although each new image size is small (less than 30K) and will only take about 5-10 seconds on a modem connection, about the same amount of time that it takes to change samples with a real microscope.

  • In the upper left-hand corner of the page, just above the magnification radio buttons, is a rendering of the samples at actual size. This image is included as a reference point to establish the degree of magnification seen in the virtual microscope.

  • When the module is first downloaded, the default image is the Intel 286 microprocessor. A life-sized copy of the packaged chip appears in the upper left-hand corner of the page and the visitor is presented with a series of magnification selection radio buttons that range from 25x to 1000x. The default initial image magnification is 25x. To increase magnification, click on the higher range buttons (50x-1000x). When another radio button is selected, a higher magnification image is downloaded from the server. When the different image magnifications have been downloaded, they are cached by the browser, and you can quickly select between the magnifications without querying the server, significantly speeding the operation of the virtual microscope.

  • The pull-down menu is used for selection of the different specimens available in this version of the virtual microscope. The initial default magnification for all of the samples is 25x.

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