A new movement that considers itself both builders and hackers is evolving all over the world-DiYBio. These garage biologists rely on the Public Library of Sciences instead of millions of dollars in research, and create, refurbish and repair their own equipment that has usually been tossed aside by a lab or facility. DiYBiologists have created a tight nit community that shares recipes, schematics and techniques amongst themselves to help grow stronger and more advanced every day. They re-purpose common items for their mad science (like creating a centrifuge from a dremel tool or webcams as microscopes) and some of their projects include:
A BioWeather map (Flash mobs meet consumer-generated science!)
The Pearl Gel box (A built-in transilluminator and casting box for $199! Think of it as a Genome home hacking kit)
1centbp (Is the price of DNA synthesis going the way of Moore’s Law? Let’s find out by tracking the prices we pay for synthesis!).
Now, whether or not you understood what any of that meant is beside the point- what does matter is that they’re trying-and succeeding- in their garages at applied sciences that normally cost governments millions of dollars in research. They’re taking the DiY movement to new, exciting places very quickly-while at the same time building a smart, strong global community to ensure it stays alive.
Here’s a video of the DiYBio Community being presented at Ignite Boston 5, in 2009.