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News round-up

May 20, 2014

Cat Ferguson

It’s time for another round-up of what y’all have been chatting about on the email list. Bit of a slow news week, so help me spice it up next week by shooting me an email or a tweet, and I’ll put it up here next week.


DIYBio internship in Minneapolis


Spark-Y, a non-profit dedicated to educating kids about sustainability, is now taking applications for their annual (unpaid) summer internship. Those from ages 16-24 are welcome to apply. If you choose to focus on the DIYBio project, you’ll be helping build their new community wetlab.

Interns can also work on aquaponics and vermicomposting, also known as “composting with a whole bunch of worms.” College credit available, etc. Apply here by June 7.

Destiny Ziebol, who’s developing the wetlab, has solicited help from the DIYBio community, so shoot her any suggestions at

The Wet Lab is currently focusing on “developing a greener future through the benefits of plants and algae,” but members expect to expand their projects soon. They’ve made their home at the San Diego Fab Lab, and they’ve got fifty people on their Meetup after five months, which seems like a pretty good start to me. They meet Wednesdays at 6:30, and optional membership dues are a bargain at $5 a month. They’re setting up their own wetlab soon. It’s organized by Cameron Clarke, a Biocurious alumn, and they’re building bioreactors for algae production, so check it out if you’re in the neighborhood.


The return of the $21 gel box


In 2011, Joseph Elsbernd wrote a blog post called “Cheapass science – How to build a $21 gel box.” People were really into it, although the Google Group discussion got a little sidetracked arguing if you could put agar into the dishwasher without destroying your plumbing. Anyway, somebody dug this up yesterday and asked for more details on the Google Group, making this a good a time as any to remind you how to make a gel box for less than the cost of popcorn and a movie.


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