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Bay Area DIYbio meetup 1

January 19, 2009


Six DIYbiologists met at Frjtz in San Francisco on Saturday, January 19th for the first time. Here are some new ideas we tossed around:

DIYbiologists John, Spencer, and Marnia enjoy Frjtz fries

DIYbiologists John, Spencer, and Marnia enjoy Frjtz fries

1. BioWeather Maps Jason Bobe, visiting from Boston, introduced BioWeather Maps. Imagine a day in April, DIYbiologists from all around the country swab crosswalk buttons in their town with a Q-tip. Each sample might contain 10 or 100 different bacteria. How do swabs from the subway in Boston differ from swabs from a hospital in San Francisco? Jason Bobe wants to find out.

2. Every Orchid is a Clone Marnia Johnston proposed a bio-art piece – take samples of orchids worldwide and show that the most popular orchids are all clones of eachother.
3. Open Gel Box 2.0 Tito showed off the schematic for a DIY kit to make your own bigger, badder, gel electrophoresis chamber

For our next meeting, we want to get our hands in some actual wet work. Marnia and Spencer are investigating public labs, as well as having DIYers teach hands-on biotech classes at the museums/science centers in SF.

Tito Jankowski: Open Gel Box, “let’s make all biotech equipment pocket sized”
Jason Bobe – BioWeather Maps, visualizing genomes
Noah Flower: the Monitor research group
Marnia Johnston: Artist, wants to start a bioart project to show that all the orchids in the world are clones of each other
Spencer Pearson: Quilt kit entrepreneur, knows about licensing, wants DIYbio as a hobby
John Cumbers: NASA AMES, all around cool guy, wants to use biotech to live forever and colonize other planets

By Tito Jankowski


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  1. December 17, 2009

    Hi, folks. My name is Frank (or MrSpock, because of my ears and my dream). I have started programming in 1985 and I work as a software developer now. I am basically both an old-school programmer (started with Pascal) and a new one (a child of the Internet era HTML, PHP) at the same time. I have basically lost a decade in the programming world. Losing the nineties is not as bad as it seems; I skipped the Windows era 😉

    My dream in life is to develop affordable space travel and space tourism. As a result I also love collecting space related photos made by both pro’s and amateurs. One of own personal problems is that I tend to become an expert of a subject very quickly, so I have to keep changing subject often in order to stay sufficiently ignorant 🙂 This is why I am interested in many topics and many languages. Fortunately space travel has so far proven to be so complex that it will keep my attention for a long time 🙂

    I’m usually more of just a lurker on the net but I’ll chime in when I feel I need to, looking forward to meeting everyone and being a part of the community! Well I won’t bore you guys and girls any longer, see you all around!

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