Proposal:Wiki labs to acquire photos

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  1. Achieve continued growth in readership
  2. Focus on quality content
  3. Increase Participation
  4. Stabilize and improve the infrastructure
  5. Encourage Innovation

Pictures like this only need a simple equipment to make and can actually be better
Simple things like sand may look interesting through professional equipment

If not English, in what language is this proposal submitted?:


Provide some sponsorship to acquire photos using scientific equipment.


I areas like anatomy, histology, plant anatomy, botany, entomology and some others it is possible to collect lots of good photos using comparatively not so complex laboratory equipment. The main tool may be 120x or about microscope with attached digital camera or in some cases just some holders and lights for existing camera. It is also possible to collect images for astronomy: while Hubble photos are available, a simple telescope with camera could collect pictures of Moon surface structures or someting like that.

Tools and usually skills are needed to take this kind of pictures. However there are lots of people with some higher education who have been even trained to prepare microscopic preparats of plant leaf slices or other similar images in the past. However it is highly unusual to buy such equipment for one's own money and have it at home and many people with suitable education are employed on completely different tasks without access to it. Giving several thousand dollars for some trivial laboratory would allow to collect many educational photos.

This proposal is similar by concept to Wiki expeditions, expanding the idea to areas that need money to get pictures but does not require far traveling.


Allow people with the right education but maybe even not working on they learn specialty to remember they past knowledge and deliver valuable pictures of objects that are easy to photograph with simple but required equipment and knowledge - something like nauplius has been described by somebody in 1800's or about and any student zoologist would know how to photograph it.

Key Questions

  • How many photos are possible with small cost laboratories?
  • How to make sure that people who get money will contribute photos at the end?
  • Would it help to check the applicant's current contribution to Commons as criteria?
  • How to pick people with correct background education?

Potential Costs

Likely from several hundred to several thousand dollars per project. From [1] it looks that average, but professional microscope would cost about $1200 but for our purposes it needs a professional digital camera that may cost $600 or about [2]. Other equipment may be rather cheap if we start from objects like plants and insects that can be picked around rather than grown in laboratory. Likely similar price it would be for average telescope with average camera. However it may not be necessary, maybe even not reasonable to cover 100 % of expenses. Some entry level equipment is really cheap costing even tens of dollars only but it may be that the quality of pictures will not pay back.


Community Discussion

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