Outlaw Biology Symposium and Faire, UCLA, Jan 29-30, Call for Ideas

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Christopher Kelty

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Oct 21, 2009, 1:14:04 PM10/21/09
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Dear DIYers:

UCLA's Center for Society and Genetics (http://socgen.ucla.edu) is
organizing a symposium (Jan. 29-30, 2010) which I've given the
tentative title of "Outlaw Biology" ("when e. coli is outlawed, only
outlaws will have e. coli" etc.). The symposium's confirmed
participants are: Meredith Patterson (hacker, writer, maker of yogurt
and other technologies), Roger Brent (Fred Hutchison Cancer Center,
Seattle), Gaymon Bennett (SynBERC, UC Berkeley), Paul Rothemund (maker
of DNA Origami, CalTech), Hugh Rienhoff (Mydaughtersdna.org) and
Jason Bobe (DIYBio, Church Lab, Harvard). Victorian Vesna, bioartist
and faculty member of of UCLA's Digital Arts and Media dept. will
likely participate and I will moderate. I'm excited about that
lineup, and will send more details to the list as things settle.

What I'm most excited about though is the hackfest/biofaire planned
for the saturday after the symposium (Jan 30). It will be held on
UCLA's campus and open to anyone. Jason has agreed to bring
bioweathermaps (and make use of the Arboretum on campus, rich source
of diversity that it is), Paul has agreed to do some aspect of DNA
synthesis, either the design part of the visualization part, and
Meredith has agreed to do something as yet unspecified (but awesome).

So I'm writing to open this up to the list and invite participation
from anyone who wants to come, do a demonstration, a teach-in, a DIY
happening, etc. There are no official funds to bring people here or
fund these things, unfortunately, but depending on what people might
want to do, there is the possibility of finding in-kind support on
campus (e.g. equipment or materials). Obviously it will be easiest
for people in SoCal to come to this, but I'd love it if others were
able to make it as well.

If you think you'd like to be part of this, and have an idea for what
to do, please send a brief abstract to me (or to the list if you want
to recruit others). I'm open to anything, but I don't yet know how
much space we will have, or how many people we can accomodate.

ck

Jake

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Oct 21, 2009, 4:07:37 PM10/21/09
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Who comes up with these titles and themes?

You know it will just be an excuse for all the media networks to drag
out their "the sky is falling" pundits and bash us unmercifully. No
matter how good the subject material there's no way I can't see this
as a loss for DIYbio. It's going to produce a whole mess of bad
publicity for us just from the title.

I know a lot of people like to think of themselves as renegades and by
increasing the glamor and mystery of the subject you have a good time
and get attention. But you really should think of image and media
relations, and this is sure to be a media disaster.

You might as well be holding up a sign asking the government to start
tracking you. The FBI/CIA kept detailed records of *peace* protesters
for christ sakes. You don't think they'll be keeping a better eye on
"outlaw biology"?

What's wrong with positive themes like "the future of lab safety",
"new trends in biology", "biologists in it together", "pioneering the
frontier", etc., etc..


-Jake

William Heath

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Oct 21, 2009, 4:33:53 PM10/21/09
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All of this will be rendered moot once there is a safe highly configurable model organism.  That will occur almost any day I think.  Who cares about e-coli once that happens.

-Tim

Simon Quellen Field

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Oct 21, 2009, 6:46:54 PM10/21/09
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Yes and no.

Titles like this are often used in education to get people's attention.
When the idiots show up, you get a chance to educate them, along with the
blissfully ignorant.

I have a project in my book Gonzo Gizmos called the Plastic Hydrogen Bomb.
Catchy title, the perfect terrorist weapon -- undetectable by metal detectors
and x-ray machines.  It is a squirtgun:
"http://www.google.com/search?q=plastic+hydrogen+bomb"

When I got contacted by the lawyer for a middle school student who had been
expelled for mentioning that his parents were helping him build it for the science
fair, I got an opportunity to educate the principal:
"http://scitoys.com/scitoys/scitoys/echem/police_report.html".

If the media get this and play up the frightening aspect to get ratings, that is
actually in our interest.  Ratings work for us too.  Those we want to attract to
our list will be able to see through the nonsense.  Those who think Rupert
Murdock does something related to actual news would not be of any use to
us, since we're looking for people who know how to use their brains.

If you're worried about the government tracking you for associating with this
list, you are reading too many thrillers.  Any list of people at our level would be
so large that the government would not find it cost effective to weed wheat from
chaff, let alone assign an actual person to you.  If there were such a surveillance
list, and you're not on it already, you're not working hard enough.

None of your titles would generate any media interest.  What you need is to get the
media excited, get them to come to the show, and find out that it is all harmless.
Then they still show the piece, and still use the scary headline, but the message
is "aren't these kids cute, making yogurt that detects Chinese food adulterants".

This is not to say that your concerns are not valid.  It is one reason for developing
protocols and BioBricks for Gram-positive probiotic bacteria and yeast.  It is why
some of us are interested in protocols that do not involve antibiotic resistance.
What you call something is important.  But calling something benign by a nasty
name be a good thing.  Eventually, people stop hearing 'wolf', and ignore the
shouting.  If we educate them at the same time, that's even better.
My latest science fiction novel A Twisted Garden is now available in bookstores.


On Wed, Oct 21, 2009 at 1:07 PM, Jake <jake...@mail.com> wrote:

Jake

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Oct 21, 2009, 8:13:30 PM10/21/09
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On Oct 21, 3:46 pm, Simon Quellen Field <sfi...@scitoys.com> wrote:
> Titles like this are often used in education to get people's attention.
> When the idiots show up, you get a chance to educate them, along with the
> blissfully ignorant.

When you have a 5 minute spot on the news, and the fearmonger pundits
take up 4 of that all you end up with is a 50 sec soundbite of the
intro speech ("Welcome outlaw biologists!") and a 10 sec soundbite of
Meredith's sinister mad scientist laugh. That's not going to play
well no matter how you figure it.

> When I got contacted by the lawyer for a middle school student who had been
> expelled for mentioning that his parents were helping him build it for the
> science fair, I got an opportunity to educate the principal:

So you educated one person while at least several hundred other people
shook their heads and said, "We've got to do something about this!"
and "Oh my God! We've got to save the the children!" That's a major
PR disaster no matter how you figure it.

The poor kid also got expelled, his parents drug trough the mud, and
they had to hire a lawyer. So the kid was expelled for however long,
his parents looked like shit to their community, and thousands were
wasted on a lawyer.

That is a major disaster for everyone involved and is exactly the kind
of thing that we need to prevent.

> "http://scitoys.com/scitoys/scitoys/echem/police_report.html".

Reading your report it's even worse! The kid had "implied bomb
threat" placed in his permanent record and the police raided his
family home!

> If the media get this and play up the frightening aspect to get ratings,
> that is actually in our interest.  Ratings work for us too.

That's not true. We're not after negative publicity. That
foolishness may work for the likes of Lindsey Lohan and Paris Hilton,
but it's not going to work for us. We're not actors and we don't
directly profit from random good or bad publicity. We get more good
members from good publicity, but we get burnt and attract bad members
from bad publicity.

> If you're worried about the government tracking you for associating with
> this list, you are reading too many thrillers.  Any list of people at our level
> would be so large that the government would not find it cost effective to
> weed wheat from chaff, let alone assign an actual person to you.

It's proven fact that the FBI keeps extensive lists on all sorts of
activities. They kept detailed records of people attending peace
rallies. They conducted direct surveillance and even infiltrated a
number of groups!

What in the hell would make you think they wouldn't do the same thing
when all it takes is a few keystrokes nowdays. There are all sorts of
weakened privacy and wiretapping laws since the patriot act (which
still allows them to see what you're checking out of the library BTW)
and an entire new department (Homeland Security) dedicated to
investigating this sort of thing.

> If there were such a surveillance list, and you're not on it
> already, you're not working hard enough.

I have no doubt that they keep a list of this sites members. It takes
only a few minutes and if they weren't I'd feel like my tax dollars
were being wasted. Weather or not they're actually doing this at the
moment doesn't really matter. At some point they will get around to
it.

It's exactly because I'm associated with this list and DIYbio that I
don't want this sort of bad PR coming down on us. A small note in
your FBI file is a lot different than being on a special watch list of
potentially dangerous people. It won't take much of this kind of BS
for a small note to become a special watch list.

> What you need is to get the media excited, get them to come to the
> show, and find out that it is all harmless.

You know damn well that's not how it works. There's no media value to
"harmless". The best case scenario is "How long until this harmless
amateur group becomes a threat to national security."

> Then they still show the piece, and still use the scary headline, but the
> message is "aren't these kids cute, making yogurt that detects Chinese food
> adulterants".

That's not how it works. These days the "headline" IS the entire
story. If they bother to throw anything else in it will be some
republican politicians and/or pundits looking to make a name by how
though on security they are. A bunch of pundits saying how dangerous
this stuff is and a soundbite of Meredith's sinister laugh is going to
be the whole story. If they actually have time for anything else it
will be what looks like a self-serving statement by a 20 something who
doesn't know jack.


I say shame on you. Shame on Christopher Kelty, Meredith Patterson,
Roger Brent, Gaymon Bennett, Paul Rothemund, Hugh Rienhoff, Jason
Bobe, and Victorian Vesna.

This is a foolish and asinine publicity stunt which is virtually
guaranteed to generate bad publicity for biologists of all types.
You've already created an internet association between "outlaw" and
"biology". That's just what we need... having "outlaw" pop up when
anyone starts typing "biology" into Google.

I suggest a boycott of this event. And if anyone from the media
contacted me I would tell them it was an asinine publicity stunt and
has nothing to do with real biologists. I'd further tell them that
these are fringe people who don't represent the good name of the group
and they ARE potentially a threat and should be investigated, if only
for their radical attitude towards the subject.

Any mentally stable individual knows better than to imply they are
doing something illegal. I don't do anything illegal and I don't want
to be associated with anyone who even implies something like that.
The kind of people attracted by and involved in this sort of thing are
suspect even to me (who knows this is simply an asinine and
counterproductive publicity stunt).

That said, I know you're just trying to stir up some excitement and
talk about interesting issues. But you're going about it in the wrong
way and will likely cause serious damage to our reputation. Once you
scare someone and give fearmonger pundits a bunch of air time it's
very hard to unscare them or even sound more credible than the
pundits. This is an issue that should be brought up as little as
possible. Whenever it comes up it should immediately be dismissed as
unfounded. Any time you even present a good argument you are simply
allowing more people to be scared by it. The majority of people with
average intelligence simply can't be engaged in this way without it
damaging your credibility and scaring them, no matter how elegant and
factual your speech is.


-Jake

Simon Quellen Field

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Oct 21, 2009, 8:39:39 PM10/21/09
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Watch what happens.  You'll see what I mean.  The experiment is being
performed, and when it is over you will be able to see that all the terrible
things you predict do not come true.

I get lots of email about the idiotic principal.  It is 100% in favor of science
education, and no one takes the side of the idiot.  I am educating a lot more
than one person.

If we let the idiots decide what we can do and say, before we even do or say
it, then they will inherit the earth.  Self-censoring and pre-emptive gagging is
bad policy.  You can't fight ignorance with silence.

My web page was not what got the child expelled.  An idiot expelled him, and
we got that fixed, so no more kids will be expelled.  If someone pushes you
in front of a bus, it isn't the bus that murdered you, it's the person who pushed.

You may want to quietly putter alone at home, hoping that the FBI won't put
you on another list.  The FBI is just another government agency with lists.  And
their lists are nothing as extensive as those of the IRS.  Being on an FBI list
is not any worse.  You may think that having the FBI 'infiltrate' your peace rally
is a terrible thing.  In actuality, all that happened is that the rally looked a little
bigger on the television cameras.  The FBI is not who you should be worried
about.  They have rules.  Your neighbor's cell phone camera photo of you posted
on the Internet would do you more harm, and you would not know how it got there.

I know Hugh Reinhoff and Roger Brent, and I know the kind of publicity they will
get.  I suspect the other participants will also come off very well.  And calling them
fringe with respect to yourself is to be amusingly inverting the relationship.

Calling yourself an outlaw is common.  Actually being one, like Gandhi or Martin
Luther King, using civil disobedience to change bad laws, would be something
I would support, but it turns out we can educate people without actually breaking
any laws.  If we can get their attention.

JonathanCline

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Oct 21, 2009, 11:42:18 PM10/21/09
to DIYbio, jcl...@ieee.org
On Oct 21, 5:46 pm, Simon Quellen Field <sfi...@scitoys.com> wrote:
>
> If you're worried about the government tracking you for associating with
> this
> list, you are reading too many thrillers.

Some of us are definitely on some government watch list for being on
this group. (With that said, it's not such a big deal to be tracked
by the government. Many researchers are.) Search the archives for
"Monitor 360." The results were presented to a government agency with
three letter acronym. I saw the "film canister" project on your web
site -- I used to build those too, in grade school -- nowadays those
kinds of projects really do get kids in trouble. The stimulus bill of
2009 also included $100 million or more for funding of specific
government agencies for homeland security, including biosecurity. The
previous homeland security measures allocated resources similarly.
The government has the money, the time, and the tumor-like growth to
cause pain (in addition to doing good as well) to private citizens
exercising free rights. It's better to be transparent though, I'd
say (meaning private citizens with any concern should advertise what
they're doing, in the most boring techno-speak possible, so much so,
that no one, including government, cares at all). Just say "no" to
sensationalism. Unless it's positive-spin sensationalism. (By that
guideline, "outlaw" does not jive.) Technological innovation has been
hampered -- truly hampered -- due to government protectionist
policies, as well as "public perception". So to exacerbate this, by
adding even 1% towards negative sensationalism, is foolish.


## Jonathan Cline
## jcl...@ieee.org
## Mobile: +1-805-617-0223
########################

Christopher Kelty

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Oct 22, 2009, 12:18:06 AM10/22/09
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um. I'll just repeat what I said before:

If anyone is interested in participating in this event in order to
promote DIY Biology, educate people, demonstrate a project, etc. I'm
happy to have you. I'd like it to be a positive "up with DIY Bio"
event, and all outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys (cowgirls) and
hackers are all welcome. Anyone who fears outlaws, pirates, ninjas,
cowboys (cowgirls) and hackers and what they represent may boycott.
Irony will not be allowed, by order of the CIA.

Seriously. If you want sensationalism, go talk to Technology Review.
If you want serious attention to what DIY Bio could be...

ck

Cory Tobin

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Oct 22, 2009, 12:33:49 AM10/22/09
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What is the format of this thing? I guess what I'm trying to figure
out is, what type of presentations are you looking for? Hands-on
activities that lay-people can perform in a few minutes? Elaborate
demonstrations? Powerpoint presentations? Posters?


-Cory

Christopher Kelty

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Oct 22, 2009, 1:25:13 AM10/22/09
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On Wed, Oct 21, 2009 at 9:33 PM, Cory Tobin <cory....@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> What is the format of this thing?

The plan is for something free-form, but similar in spirit to a fair
or tradeshow, with multiple projects happening concurrently. We have
a small gallery space, which means not too elaborate a lab set-up or
difficult safety constraints. We have roughly 5 hours, which can
accommodate either repeating demos/talks or a longish workshop. We
can arrange sign-ups ahead of time for projects, if you want a group
of interested people to be somewhere at a specified time, or we can
set up a powerpoint/poster and you can wait for people to come see
you. We intend to entice people (i.e. malnourished undergrads) with
lunch. The potentially interesting thing is that UCLA has a lot of
resources (e.g. http://www.genoseq.ucla.edu/action/view/Main_Page),
which might be willing to partner if you can come up with something
fun, but not too expensive or elaborate...

be creative?

ck

Jake

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Oct 22, 2009, 11:12:24 AM10/22/09
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On Oct 21, 9:18 pm, Christopher Kelty <cke...@gmail.com> wrote:
> event, and all outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys (cowgirls) and
> hackers are all welcome.

You just don't know when to quit do you? Apparently you want to
attract outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys and hackers to biology. You
*are* a threat. We're not talking about Halloween costumes here or
some dungeons and dragons game here. You're using the engilish
languange in a way that's offensive to biologists and scary to
laypersons.

If you want to have a little role-playing club don't drag down
everyone else with your foolishness.


-Jake

Cathal Garvey

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Oct 22, 2009, 5:10:03 PM10/22/09
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The whole point of DIYbio is to bring Biology to the level of the hobbyist, so people can start making real contributions to the field without the backing of companies or institutions.

A huge, huge part of this is public outreach and immersion, getting new people involved and dissolving the ivory tower that has made the subject so unapproachable for so long.

I think this lighthearted approach is *exactly* what DIYbio is all about; it's human, it's fresh, and it's fun.
Trying to behave like stereotypical, stodgy old scientists won't win us any friends or new fans in the internet age. If that approach were worth anything, the world would be full of DIYbiologists by now.

Jake

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Oct 22, 2009, 6:02:45 PM10/22/09
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On Oct 22, 2:10 pm, Cathal Garvey <cathalgar...@gmail.com> wrote:
> A huge, huge part of this is public outreach and immersion, getting new
> people involved and dissolving the ivory tower that has made the subject so
> unapproachable for so long.

And I guess you think the public that we want to attract is made up of
outlaws, pirates, ninjas, and cowboys?

If we attract those sorts of people then our group WILL be made up of
"outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys and hackers." And when the press
calls us a bunch of "outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys and hackers" we
won't be able to say jack shit to dispute that.

And when politicians want to "protect the children" and insure
national security by disbanding and arresting an "outlaw biologist/
bioterrorist group" made up of "outlaws, pirates, ninjas, cowboys and
hackers" NOBODY is going to defend us because we've self-associated
with indefensible categories of people.

Believe me when I say that an anti-DIYbio bill is going to be a lot
easier to pass when we self-relabel it the "anti-outlaw-pirate-ninja-
bio-hacker bill". No politician in their right mind is going to raise
any objection or even attempt to amend such a bill. And we'll have
nobody to blame except ourselves.


-Jake

Cathal Garvey

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Oct 22, 2009, 6:24:18 PM10/22/09
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> indefensible categories of people
In the US, Gun-nuts have successfully avoided legislation from the beginning despite more and more horrific accounts of people shooting one another for no decent cause.

The very perspective that some people are intrinsically indefensible is a good reason why any attempts to single them out legally will be met with resistance.

And ninjas, pirates and cowboys sound like great fun. I'd be very happy to share a hobby with such colourful people, if the alternative crowd were straight-laced and legally cowed.

Simon Quellen Field

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Oct 22, 2009, 8:11:59 PM10/22/09
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Like I said before, the experiment is being run.
All we have to do now is wait to see whether Jake's
predictions come true, or whether the Faire gets
new members in the group who aren't FBI infiltrators.
 
People like pirate radio despite it actually being
against the law (unlike any of the projects being
persued by this list).  People like cowboys, and
while terms like cowboy diplomacy and cowboy
attitude are used disparagingly, they are not taken
as insults.  And my mother's cat is named Ninja.
Scarriest purr in the west.  And Willy Nelson made
a carreer out of being the "outlaw", without ever
generating ill-will from the public or the media.  He
did get arrested for drug possession, but that was
not what the "outlaw" image was actually about.
That would be like calling Jake an outlaw because
he got a speeding ticket once.
 
Obviously, the title has got several of us discussing
the Faire in a public forum.  That means more text
for Google to index, which means that this list will be
hit more times in subsequent Google searches, and
get higher PageRank than it would have otherwise.
Thus, it has already generated good publicity.
 
When just one media story carries the diybio.org
URL in their text, there will be a much larger increase
in search engine traffic and ranking.  All to the good,
no matter what the story actually says.
 
Call me anything you like, just spell my URL right.
 
Sit back and wait.  The experiment is running.

Daniel C.

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Oct 22, 2009, 8:22:59 PM10/22/09
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On Thu, Oct 22, 2009 at 3:02 PM, Jake <jake...@mail.com> wrote:
> And I guess you think the public that we want to attract is made up of
> outlaws, pirates, ninjas, and cowboys?

All of my friends are outlaws, pirates, ninjas or cowboys. If you
want you can come hang out with us sometime you're welcome. We're
going to put on our ten-gallon hats and dusters, ride to Sarsparilla
Slim's ranch, assassinate him undetected, crack his safe and steal all
the money in it, and then have some grog and divvy up the booty.

Yarrrrr.

PYROcomp

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Oct 22, 2009, 8:30:38 PM10/22/09
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Cool, can I wear my bowler and bring my walking stick?
I also have some great DIY nicocola I could bring X2 the caffeine and nicotine to boot!

Singin in the rain....

Daniel C.

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Oct 22, 2009, 8:37:52 PM10/22/09
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On Thu, Oct 22, 2009 at 5:30 PM, PYROcomp <rexm...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Cool, can I wear my bowler and bring my walking stick?
> I also have some great DIY nicocola I could bring X2 the caffeine and
> nicotine to boot!
>
> Singin in the rain....

Only if your bow tie is really a camera. (Cue Simon and Garfunkel.)

Nathan McCorkle

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Oct 23, 2009, 1:18:23 AM10/23/09
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I think if you want to get technical, anyone working in an
undergraduate or graduate or research institution is Doing it
Themselves... I wanted to do crazy things with bio and chem when I was
in high school, so I enrolled in a biotech program... I am learning
all this and doing it myself, hopefully someday doing some really cool
stuff that will benefit more than just myself. Soooo, I think every
biologist is a DIYer.

> >
>



--
Nathan McCorkle
Rochester Institute of Technology
College of Science, Biotechnology/Bioinformatics

JonathanCline

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Oct 23, 2009, 12:46:11 PM10/23/09
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On Oct 22, 7:11 pm, Simon Quellen Field <sfi...@scitoys.com> wrote:
> Like I said before, the experiment is being run.

It has already been run in other avenues. At a minimum, this type of
sensationalism is bad taste. At maximum, the group starts to look
like PETA - which "in the name of creating attention toward the
issues" has polarized both it's supporters and it's protagonists.
The following real, scientifically justified, research articles
demonstrates why it's bad for the technology (i.e. us, individually
and/or as a group). There is no need for further beta testing to
prove this conclusion. Many PI's even feel that the syn bio media
craze (aka: the hype of the vaporware) may damage their funding
credibility - for real.

Large-Scale Assessment of the Effect of Popularity on the Reliability
of Research
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0005996
"""Based on theoretical reasoning it has been suggested that the
reliability of findings published in the scientific literature
decreases with the popularity of a research field. Here we provide
empirical support for this prediction. We evaluate published
statements on protein interactions with data from high-throughput
experiments. We find evidence for two distinctive effects. First, with
increasing popularity of the interaction partners, individual
statements in the literature become more erroneous. Second, the
overall evidence on an interaction becomes increasingly distorted by
multiple independent testing. We therefore argue that for increasing
the reliability of research it is essential to assess the negative
effects of popularity and develop approaches to diminish these
effects."""

"""Our approach allows us to provide evidence for two effects of a
high popularity on the reliability of research. First, we find that
individual results on yeast protein interactions as published in the
literature become less reliable with increasing popularity of the
interacting proteins (inflated error effect). This is disquieting
because one plausible possibility to explain this effect is
“significance seeking”. Second, we find evidence for a negative effect
of a high popularity due to multiple independent testing. Interactions
that are obtained at least once in the literature are less likely
confirmed by high-throughput experiments if the interaction partners
are more popular. The second effect is about 10 times larger than the
first one."""


The Commercialisation of Medical and Scientific Reporting
http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pmed.0010038

A Collection of Articles on Disease Mongering in PLoS Medicine
http://collections.plos.org/plosmedicine/diseasemongering-2006.php

What Are the Roles and Responsibilities of the Media in Disseminating
Health Information?
http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pmed.0020215

Christopher Kelty

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Oct 23, 2009, 1:44:49 PM10/23/09
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The first rule of mailing lists is "do not feed the trolls."

There are many people on this list who want it to be focused on the
discussion of DIYBio projects and the details thereof. This is a very
worthy goal. Not feeding the trolls is a key strategy worth
following.

I started this thread because I am interested in which of the ongoing
projects discussed on this list could realistically be demonstrated in
a 1-day event, for the purposes of educating people about biology,
making them think about what counts as "legitimate" biological
research, opening their minds to other ways of participating in
science besides either watching Nova or majoring in biology, and
discussing whether this kind of "outlaw" biology might conceivably
generate solutions to problems or new techniques not forthcoming from
"legitimate" science.

If you are interested in discussing that, this list might be the right
place. If not, do not feed the trolls...

thanks to those people who have offered to participate, or have
offered encouragement about the event.
ck

JonathanCline

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Oct 23, 2009, 1:53:10 PM10/23/09
to DIYbio
On Oct 23, 12:44 pm, Christopher Kelty <cke...@gmail.com> wrote:
> and
> discussing whether this kind of "outlaw" biology might conceivably
> generate solutions to problems or new techniques not forthcoming from
> "legitimate" science.

Perhaps the better metaphor is the "bazaar" vs. the "cathedral" - in
reference to Eric Raymond's book on open source technology. "Bazaar
biology".

Jake

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Oct 26, 2009, 8:37:30 PM10/26/09
to DIYbio
On Oct 23, 10:44 am, Christopher Kelty <cke...@gmail.com> wrote:
> making them think about what counts as "legitimate" biological
> research, opening their minds to other ways of participating in
> science besides either watching Nova or majoring in biology, and
> discussing whether this kind of "outlaw" biology might conceivably
> generate solutions to problems or new techniques not forthcoming from
> "legitimate" science.

There is noting "legitimate" about inviting outlaws and would-be
killers (ninjas, pirates, etc.) to a biology event. In fact, it's
probably illegal. Conspiracy cases are pretty easy to prosecute.
There's only three elements to a conspiracy, and you've already
satisfied the easiest one.

Perhaps you should read up on the law or consult a lawyer. IMHO it
won't take much going wrong for you to end up criminally liable.

"Conspiracy is an inchoate, or preparatory, crime. It is similar to
solicitation in that both crimes are committed by manifesting an
intent to engage in a criminal act."

People interested in doing "legitimate" biology don't want to be
associated with outlaws. The only people you will attract are kids
wrapped up in their fantasy worlds that are too stupid to realize they
don't want to be associated with outlaws.

If you suspect someone of being an outlaw (biological or otherwise)...

"Please use this website to report suspected terrorism or criminal
activity. Your information will be reviewed promptly by an FBI
special agent or a professional staff member."

https://tips.fbi.gov/

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