No need to squash an eyeball

Why does a physicist build a tiny replica of a dishwasher to put under a microscope? And what invention has made going to the optician or eye doctor that much more bearable (and also created a fun moment in TV history)? Join in as Durham University's Professor John Girkin answers these questions (and some more) and explains his optical toys to us. Yes, you read that correctly, toys. What they are? Click play and listen.

Music by Josh Woodward, Robert Schumann, Frederic Chopin played by Donald Betts, Alexander Borodin and Vienna Ditto. Sounds by Mike Koenig. You can find the music here, as always. Photo by Ben Mortimer/flickr (CC-BY).