1. A Biopunk Manifesto by Meredith Patterson


    from SMA / Added

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    Scientific literacy is necessary for a functioning society in the modern age. Scientific literacy is not science education. A person educated in science can understand science; a scientifically literate person can *do* science. Scientific literacy empowers everyone who possesses it to be active contributors to their own health care, the quality of their food, water, and air, their very interactions with their own bodies and the complex world around them. Society has made dramatic progress in the last hundred years toward the promotion of education, but at the same time, the prevalence of citizen science has fallen. Who are the twentieth-century equivalents of Benjamin Franklin, Edward Jenner, Marie Curie or Thomas Edison? Perhaps Steve Wozniak, Bill Hewlett, Dave Packard or Linus Torvalds -- but the scope of their work is far narrower than that of the natural philosophers who preceded them. Citizen science has suffered from a troubling decline in diversity, and it is this diversity that biohackers seek to reclaim. We reject the popular perception that science is only done in million-dollar university, government, or corporate labs; we assert that the right of freedom of inquiry, to do research and pursue understanding under one's own direction, is as fundamental a right as that of free speech or freedom of religion. We have no quarrel with Big Science; we merely recall that Small Science has always been just as critical to the development of the body of human knowledge, and we refuse to see it extinguished. Research requires tools, and free inquiry requires that access to tools be unfettered. As engineers, we are developing low-cost laboratory equipment and off-the-shelf protocols that are accessible to the average citizen. As political actors, we support open journals, open collaboration, and free access to publicly-funded research, and we oppose laws that would criminalize the possession of research equipment or the private pursuit of inquiry. Perhaps it seems strange that scientists and engineers would seek to involve themselves in the political world -- but biohackers have, by necessity, committed themselves to doing so. The lawmakers who wish to curtail individual freedom of inquiry do so out of ignorance and its evil twin, fear -- the natural prey and the natural predator of scientific investigation, respectively. If we can prevail against the former, we will dispel the latter. As biohackers it is our responsibility to act as emissaries of science, creating new scientists out of everyone we meet. We must communicate not only the value of our research, but the value of our methodology and motivation, if we are to drive ignorance and fear back into the darkness once and for all. We the biopunks are dedicated to putting the tools of scientific investigation into the hands of anyone who wants them. We are building an infrastructure of methodology, of communication, of automation, and of publicly available knowledge. Biopunks experiment. We have questions, and we don't see the point in waiting around for someone else to answer them. Armed with curiosity and the scientific method, we formulate and test hypotheses in order to find answers to the questions that keep us awake at night. We publish our protocols and equipment designs, and share our bench experience, so that our fellow biopunks may learn from and expand on our methods, as well as reproducing one another's experiments to confirm validity. To paraphrase Eric Hughes, "Our work is free for all to use, worldwide. We don't much care if you don't approve of our research topics." We are building on the work of the Cypherpunks who came before us to ensure that a widely dispersed research community cannot be shut down. Biopunks deplore restrictions on independent research, for the right to arrive independently at an understanding of the world around oneself is a fundamental human right. Curiosity knows no ethnic, gender, age, or socioeconomic boundaries, but the opportunity to satisfy that curiosity all too often turns on economic opportunity, and we aim to break down that barrier. A thirteen-year-old kid in South Central Los Angeles has just as much of a right to investigate the world as does a university professor. If thermocyclers are too expensive to give one to every interested person, then we'll design cheaper ones and teach people how to build them. Biopunks take responsibility for their research. We keep in mind that our subjects of interest are living organisms worthy of respect and good treatment, and we are acutely aware that our research has the potential to affect those around us. But we reject outright the admonishments of the precautionary principle, which is nothing more than a paternalistic attempt to silence researchers by inspiring fear of the unknown. When we work, it is with the betterment of the community in mind -- and that includes our community, your community, and the communities of people that we may never meet. We welcome your questions, and we desire nothing more than to empower you to discover the answers to them yourselves. The biopunks are actively engaged in making the world a place that everyone can understand. Come, let us research together. This video is from the Outlaw Biology? Conference at UCLA. http://outlawbiology.net/

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    • ucam 0.2 laser cut prototype at diybio-boston April 2010 Meetup


      from mac cowell / Added

      1,829 Plays / / 1 Comment

      I designed and laser-cut my first acrylic prototype of the ucam (http://diybio.org/ucam) 2-axis slide stage & "microscope" platform. Servos turn cams to move the stage in x and y, controlled by an arduino, controlled by processing.org on a computer, which runs a server for receiving TUIO objects over IP from the local network. In this case, via an iPhone. It should cost between $50 - $75 for all the parts, including an arduino and a *cheap* camera. The design is open source, CC-BY-NC. Beer cans not included.

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      • Programming DNA by Drew Endy


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        Genetic engineering is now a thirty year old technology. For reference, over a similar period of time, modern computing machines went from exclusive objects used to design weapons of mass destruction, to the now ubiquitous panoply of personal computing devices that support mass communication and construction. Inspired by this and many other past examples of the overwhelmingly constructive uses of technology by individuals, we have been working over the past five years to develop new tools that will help to make biology easy to engineer. We have also been working to foster a constructive culture of future biological technologists, who can reliably and responsibly conceive, develop, and deliver biological technologies that solve local problems. This talk will introduce current best practice in biological engineering, including an overview of how to order synthetic DNA and how to use and contribute standard biological parts to an open source collection of genetic functions. The talk will also discuss issues of human practice, including biological safety, biological security, ownership, sharing, and innovation in biotechnology, community organization, and perception across many different publics. My hope is that the conferees of 24C3 will help me to understand how to best enable an overwhelmingly constructive hacker culture for programming DNA. This video is from the 24th Chaos Communication Congress. http://events.ccc.de/congress/2007/Fahrplan/events/2329.en.html

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        • BioHacker: Do-It-Yourself


          from Martin Malthe Borch / Added

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          Medical Museion is hosting an open biology (or “biohacking”) laboratory and a series of hands-on public events from January-March 2013. The events are part of the European network, Studiolab, that provides a platform for creative projects that bridge divides between science, art and design. Come explore the biohacking lab and see how it has been cobbled together from discarded furniture, IKEA cupboards and unique ‘hacked’ instruments made by DIY biologists from Copenhagen’s BiologiGaragen. Read about open labs, watch the shadows of scientists play across the walls, and take home some inspiration for your own kitchen experiments – whether this is teasing the DNA out of an onion, or making your own rye bread. The exhibition is open Wednesday-Friday and Sunday from 12 – 4 pm from 25th January. INFO: museion.ku.dk/from-kitchen-sink-to-museum-project-description/ EVENTS: museion.ku.dk/events-list/ People involved in the project : * Martin Malthe Borch, MSc Biological engineering, designer, co-founder of the local biohackerspace BiologiGaragen. * Sara Krugman, Co-founder of Line (linehq.com), designing tools for personalized health. MA Interaction Design from CIID * Emil D. Lambreth Polny, project coordinator at UNIK Center for Synthetic Biology. * Ane Pilgaard Sørensen, designer and exhibition assistant at Medical Museion. * Thomas Söderqvist, professor and director at Medical Museion and initiator/responsible for the project. * Rüdiger Trojok, open-science scholar and molecular biologist, currently finishing his Masters at the Technical University of Denmark. * Karin Tybjerg, associate professor at Medical Museion and co-director of the project. * Louise Whiteley, assistant professor at Medical Museion and co-director of the project.

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          • DIYSECT Episode 1: Learning in Public


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            www.diysect.com/learninginpublic "Learning in Public" is the first of seven episodes in the DIYSECT web-series. It features several community biolabs across the U.S. and Canada, and well as tactical performance artists from Critical Art Ensemble and subRosa. The subjects' works, motivations, and practices all have a central theme in common: the notion of public amateurism -- embracing hacker ethic, open experimentation, and learning together. Shortlisted at The Biofiction Film Festival

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            • The DIYbio Community - Presented at Ignite Boston 5 (2009)


              from mac cowell / Added

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              We founded diybio.org, a community for amateur scientists, last year in May, just in time to present at ignite boston 2008. Since then, the community has grown. In this talk, I spend 5 minutes giving a lighting overview of the community and the current hot projects members are working on: new, cheap, diy-hardware, distributed science experiments (think flashmobs for science), a biohacking coworking space, and some molecular biology experiments (including making genetically engineered fluorescent yogurt, a melamine biosensor, and a biological counter). Videos from Ignite Boston 5 here: http://ignite.oreilly.com/2009/02/ignite-boston-5-wrap-up-videos.html

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              • ucam hello world: looking at streetwater and blood


                from mac cowell / Added

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                We hacked $10 webcams[1] into microscopes a la Hackteria.org[2]. In this video you can see the maiden run. We're using processing to display the webcam video and do blob-detection on it. Details here: http://diybio.org/2009/12/13/webcam-microscope-hacks-at-bosslab. [1]: http://www.amazon.com/Digital-Camera-Webcam-Microphone-Notebook/dp/B000VCTHM4 [2]: http://hackteria.org/?p=78

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                • Marc Dusseiller (CH) - DIYbio and Nomadic Science BioHackLab 


                  from CIANT Prague / Added

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                  Dusjagr aka Dr. Marc Dusseiller, a transdisciplinary scholar, lecturer for micro- and nanotechnology, cultural facilitator and artist talk sabout his current projects in Hackteria framework which take place all around the world and discuss a potential danger within DIY bio scene. Furthermore he mentions really interesting workshop Nomadic Science BioHackLab, DIYbio and Open Biology tribute to Renaissance alchemist, makers, artisans, and tinkerers which he recently led in collaboration with Denisa Kera at multifunctional bar space Sample room (Vzorkovna) in Prague.

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                  • What makes traditional themal cyclers so expensive (and what is Otyp doing differently)?


                    from otyp / Added

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                    James from Otyp gives a little more detail about what makes conventional PCR machines (thermal cyclers) so expensive, and how using open technologies, and mass produced parts designed to be used with traditional computers, Otyp is going to be making Thermotyp, an open source PCR machine.

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                    • Do-it-yourself biology and Biohackers: Facts und Fiction - BIO:FICTION Vienna 2011


                      from BIO·FICTION / Added

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                      Panel participants: Jason Bobe (Harvard University, DIYBio), Jernej Turnsek & Tina Lebar (iGEM Slovenia), Sonja Bäumel (freelance artist), Johannes Grenzfurthner (monochrom)

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