At some fundamental level, every science is reduced to counting spots. Whether it be counting the number of stars in a particular quadrant or even the number of peas in a pod, at some point you must face the dots. It is inescapable. Unlike astronomers and particle physicists who have developed sophisticated software for tabulating dots, however, biologists had yet to develop an effective time-saving system that is comparable to what their colleagues have achieved in the physical sciences--until now.

BioSeparations of Tucson, Ariz., has developed Image Scan for life sciences and clinical researchers. Image Scan is designed to automatically scan the entire circle area of a microscope slide while segmenting, enumerating, and measuring cells and other objects specified by the user. It accomplishes this feat by dividing the focal area into numerous minifields. As the stage of the microscope moves--producing a scanning graphic--each field is analyzed for labeled...

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