About this project
BioCurious? Experiment with friends. What ideas would you come up with if you hung out with a molecular biologist, a mechanical engineer, a computer programmer and an artist - and happened to be sitting next to a lab?
Biological and genetic knowledge is growing fast. The way forward in an increasingly cross-disciplinary area is through collaboration. Recognizing this need, we brainstormed BioCurious, a collaborative labspace where, together, we learn, socialize, research and make the tools that will change the change the face of biotech. BioCurious puts biotech in the hands of Makers, creators with the passion requisite for innovation.
We have been working on this project since January, first having meetups out of our garage lab then, exceeding capacity, searching for industrial space to serve more members of our community, adding classes and a larger lab. The good news is that there is a lot of space available out there. The not-so-good news is that we need pledges to kickstart out community lab in order to pay for a basic starter synthetic biology lab, provide a security deposit on a warehouse, and cover liability insurance for all lab users. Do you want more details before deciding to pledge? Please get in touch with Eri Gentry, at email@example.com. She's got a great story to share!
BioCurious is a non-profit effort. We will receive revenue from monthly membership fees, not to exceed $200/mo, and classes; and all revenue will go toward building our lab. None of our members or founders is paid for the work they do. Nor will the funds from kickstarter be used to pay salaries.
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Curious about Biology? Find out more at the new biology collaborative lab space where citizen science moves out of the classroom and into the community. Following the successful example of hackerspaces such as Noisebridge, Langton Labs, Hacker Dojo, and co-working spaces such as the Hub, we're pleased to offer the first Bay Area space dedicated to Non-Institutional Biology. Got an idea for a startup? Join the DIY, "garage biology" movement and found a new breed of biotech. Meet cofounders and friends, and make things you'd never dreamed possible.
How is this possible? Governments and big business once dominated computing. Today, entrepreneurs and hobbyists play leading roles in developing computing technologies and products, both hardware and software. The tools for serious biological engineering are getting cheaper all the time. See http://www.backyardbrains.com/ http://lavaamp.wordpress.com/ http://openpcr.org/ http://www.pearlbiotech.com/
However, aspiring entrepreneurs lack affordable access to a complete set of lab equipment outside of a university lab or high priced industrial commercial space. Perhaps you have a day job in biotech already, but have neither the time nor freedom to nurture your pet project at work. Maybe you are seeking a career in the life sciences, are between jobs, or are a recent graduate wanting to improve your skill set. Whatever your current level of interest or ability, BioCurious has a spot for you.
Remember our Motto: Education, Collaboration, Innovation
As always, Safety First!
BioCurious will offer:
1) Education, Outreach, Community building events. Science was once a cultural activity, carried out by wealthy “gentlemen scholars” who had the leisure and material resources to experiment. The 20th century saw an unprecedented centralization of science around an industrial model. The plummeting costs of enabling technologies has brought meaningful biological research back within reach of the independent citizen scientist. From Bio-Art to BioFuels, the wave of next generation biotech applications is set to transform our culture and economy. BioCurious will be Ground 0 for this revolution.
2) Entrepreneurship Incubation, Mentoring, Angel Investment. The Bay Area is home to many networks that help entrepreneurs launch web businesses with a shoe-string budget and a dream. Similar support infrastructure does not yet exist for biotech ventures. Until recently, biotech has required large start up costs. An ecosystem of mentorship and a network of investors who understand the possibilities for lean-biotech-start ups to leverage shared resources and amplify their creative efforts to have disproportionate commercial impact, does not yet exist. BioCurious will catalyze the formation of this system.
Your support will help us acquire the remaining needed equipment and secure the deposit of 3 months rent for a lab in a ~3,000sqft industrial building in Silicon Valley. Together with the matching pledges from our founding members, whose monthly dues will support operations, we'll have a sustainable non-profit community lab. Science and education grants (STEM) will provide further support as well as kits and classes (eg, core biotech courses, how to build a gel box, PCR technique, SNP testing). Again, if you have questions about our work so far, please get in touch with Eri, at firstname.lastname@example.org, twitter: erigentry.
Do you like our project? Contact us! Make a pledge! Or, dare to go so far as to write or tweet about us! In which case, you'll want the video, which is available for embedding on vimeo, at http://vimeo.com/12873908
Thanks for your support!
Eri, Joseph & Tito
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