Humans have been using lenses for magnification for more than 1000 years. One of the big breakthroughs in the field was in the 17th century with the invention of the microscope and telescope. In the 1850s, the modern era of lens-making started with Karl Fried-rich Gauss's books on the topic, before computer-based modelling took off in the 1960s.
Today's optics technicians design, fabricate, assemble, and install all manner of optical instruments, such as telescopes, microscopes, aerial cameras, and eyeglasses. The four most common types of optics technicians are precision-lens technicians, optomechanical technicians, precision-lens grinders, and photo-optics technicians.
Photo-optics technicians are often found working in satellite tracking stations, where they operate enormous telescopic cameras that track satellites and missiles in flight.