Sunday, March 15, 2009

Biohackers attempt to unstitch the fabric of life

According to Seed Magazine there are a lot of do it yourself (DIF) folks working, in their garages and living rooms, on synthetic biology projects. The pushing of complex scientific information beyond the doors of hallowed institutions has been tagged with several modifiers: citizen, amateur, DIY, hobbyist. Call it what you will, but the “ democratization of science ” is flourishing. Nowhere is this trend arguably more evident than within , a field that applies engineering principles to the study and construction of biological systems. Through collaboration and an open-sourcing of genomic databases biohacking will provide nonscientists the opportunity to tinker with living machines.

As a result there are rebellious underground punks who excel in hacking the genetic code in order to bring the genetics to the people. Any Genetic manipulation in order to advance humans, usually beyond what is currently called human is fair game. As a result, biopunk presents some social and philisophical discourse in what it means to be human. One intersting example is the use of squid genes to enhance tatoos, which will glow in the dark with an awesome luminescence.


  1. Hmm, Monsanto and big agrocorp's promoting synthetic biology in the major halls of learning, Yathink...G:

  2. I wouldn't think Monsanto and their ilk would want any "democratization" of bioengineering. They'd like to monopolize technology like that, not give it away.

    Now spreading the meme of synthetic biology to get folks used to hearing and accepting genetically modified food, that I think is what they will take advantage of.

  3. Yep Monsanto et al have been doing this since the 1970's. My old boss, a surveyor, dropped out of Oregon State Agricultural College because the courses were promoted and funded by chemical industries with no regard for organic farming methods. Nothings changed except for the addition of bioengineering. Baaaaaa