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Author: Subject: Chemistry Hackspace: Can it be done?
GreenD
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[*] posted on 5-3-2012 at 13:43


Why not, instead of latitude and longitude use something less telling, like.

Hi.

I'm from the upper midwest.
Besides, I highly doubt that anyone on here is any real threat, especially if actively posting, for any type of fed3ral intervention. I just don't think they care about us. Unless they make a slip up, want to scare us, or have hired a new recruit who is all for incarceration, I don't think we have anything to fear. Just don't deal with >500mg quantities of anything, don't start talking like a bee, and don't start asking stupid questions.

Besides, if you're smart enough - you know the many things you can do to dramatically reduce the chance of a federal door-knocking, and if you get to that point, you best not have your nitro cellulose sitting on your bedroom table.

>> JUST DON'T BE STUPID. Don't be homocidal, don't be a king pin, don't fuck with other people. <<



[Edited on 5-3-2012 by GreenD]




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White Yeti
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[*] posted on 5-3-2012 at 14:10


GreenD, I believe that a healthy dose of paranoia is necessary when carrying out mad science. But let's be reasonable, there is no privacy whatsoever on the interwebs. If the authorities really wanted to find you, they can use your IP address and find your house in a jiffy. We are just under the illusion that we have privacy. Your searches are monitored, your personal information is sold, this is a scary world we're living in. Giving your coordinates does not expose you in any way, the authorities already have all your personal information at their fingertips.

If you report your coordinates to one decimal point or to the nearest integer, it's good enough to get a general sense of your position on the earth, but vague enough to avoid immediate trouble. Besides -as you said- most of us are not criminals, so we don't have too much to worry about.

My main concern is that there are too FEW active members on this forum to really benefit from cooperation. Like I said, by looking at the members list, we are about 11,000 members, but only about 400 of them really contribute frequently, if not on a daily basis.

Advertising would not work in the least, because it could attract K3W15.




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497
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[*] posted on 5-3-2012 at 14:13


Look up tor.



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GreenD
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[*] posted on 5-3-2012 at 14:23


What 497 said - you don't know about this? :o

better make a new account :)




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gutter_ca
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[*] posted on 19-3-2012 at 20:08


Bio Hackspace



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GreenD
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[*] posted on 20-3-2012 at 06:22


still waiting for someone from the upper midwest :)



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White Yeti
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[*] posted on 20-3-2012 at 12:42


Quote: Originally posted by gutter_ca  
Bio Hackspace


Nice find! I definitely think a chemistry equivalent can be done. The problem with amateur chemistry is the large initial investment in equipment and chemicals. Even though condensers, flasks, burettes and other equipment are very useful, an individual does not use those materials often enough to offset the initial price.

I like biology a lot as well. I would really like to have my own freezer/refrigerator to store extracts and other fun stuff, but I don't have enough stuff to store to justify my buying a 500+ dollar refrigerator.

Since this is a DIY type organisation, I'd bet a physics person would be glad to make a refrigerator for us chemists to use.




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[*] posted on 29-4-2012 at 23:07


Let me just start by saying that this idea is AWESOME!
However, obviously, not too many people are interested in chemistry (no idea why, it's pretty damn interesting), especially with nerds increasingly turning to computers rather than the real world, so we're few and far between. I think if we made it a hackspace for lots of different kinds of people, like physics, electronics, biology, etc. rather than just chemistry we could have a lot more people and a lot more capital, and we'd probably have a lot of equipment in common. We'd also have people to consult on cross-discipline projects. Problem is, how do you decide who pays how much? Electronics people aren't going to be too happy about helping to pay for our new chemistry stuff, and vice versa.
I'll bet we could find a way to make money using chemistry, any ideas?
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White Yeti
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[*] posted on 30-4-2012 at 12:04


Quote: Originally posted by Aperturescience27  

I'll bet we could find a way to make money using chemistry, any ideas?


It would be nice if there was an easy and legal way, but unfortunately, there is no chemical that a hackspace can make that big companies cannot make more efficiently and cheaply with economies of scale.
[edit]

Perhaps if we made chemicals that are synthesised by a long series of steps no matter what, we could break down a synthesis amongst many different people and make the synthesis more efficient.

So, say the synthesis of compound X requires 10 steps, 10 different people can get involved. So long as everyone does his/her job correctly, you end up with a decent amount of a chemical that can be sold for a small fortune.

Applying the principles of the assembly line, everyone will get better (at the step they are in charge of) and over time the synthesis will gradually become more efficient.

Very idealistic, but still possible to implement.

[Edited on 4-30-2012 by White Yeti]




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GreenD
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[*] posted on 30-4-2012 at 12:30


Quote: Originally posted by White Yeti  
Quote: Originally posted by Aperturescience27  

I'll bet we could find a way to make money using chemistry, any ideas?


It would be nice if there was an easy and legal way, but unfortunately, there is no chemical that a hackspace can make that big companies cannot make more efficiently and cheaply with economies of scale.
[edit]

Perhaps if we made chemicals that are synthesised by a long series of steps no matter what, we could break down a synthesis amongst many different people and make the synthesis more efficient.

So, say the synthesis of compound X requires 10 steps, 10 different people can get involved. So long as everyone does his/her job correctly, you end up with a decent amount of a chemical that can be sold for a small fortune.

Applying the principles of the assembly line, everyone will get better (at the step they are in charge of) and over time the synthesis will gradually become more efficient.

Very idealistic, but still possible to implement.

[Edited on 4-30-2012 by White Yeti]


That is actually a pretty fascinating idea.




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[*] posted on 30-4-2012 at 17:57


Regarding making money with chemistry, I'm just going to throw some ideas out there, I know they're probably not realistic but it can't hurt, right? There could be some really complex molecules that could be quite valuable, like pheromones and other very selectively-acting biological chemicals. Pharmaceuticals would require too much legal stuff (for good reason). With so many smart people working together, we might come up with new techniques for synthesizing stuff, we'd just have to be sure to get patents. Biotech, generally, is big money right now and probably for the next few decades, and while it's not really my area, I'm sure we've got plenty of people who do know biochemistry pretty well. Personally, I'd LOVE to stick it to Monsanto. There's also fuels, batteries, etc.

On a separate note, I wonder if we could get local people (near hackspaces) interested in chemistry? If we had open houses regularly to show people all the cool stuff we'd be doing, they might decide to become members. Not only would this help us, but it would be a benefit to society, getting more people interested in science, and a benefit to these people, by giving them an awesome new hobby. Children are naturally curious and quick learners, and we could certainly get them interested, but again, there's a liability issue. Obviously we wouldn't let them into the areas where we keep the expensive and/or dangerous stuff. Hopefully parents won't prove to be too overprotective.

I've put a thread on the Craigslist "science" forum for Orange County (where I live) asking if people would be interested in creating a hackspace.
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[*] posted on 30-4-2012 at 18:25


Actually, pheromones are relatively simple chemicals, much like neurotransmitters. You may be thinking of hormones, which can get quite large and difficult to manufacture.

I'm a biochem person myself, and I'd love to work on the synthesis of biological chemicals. I'm sure there are other biochem people on this forum. Enzymes are BIG, there are real markets and buyers and prices are exorbitant. You can easily make a small fortune if you figure out how to synthesise enzymes in gram quantities cheaply.

I personally don't think we should lure more people into chemistry, if they are interested, they should be provided the right tools and be surrounded by the right people. But the motivation must come from within, otherwise, they'll turn into kewls who are only interested in the end product of a synthesis rather than the chemistry involved and the work that goes into it. That's if they're lucky, the worst case scenario is that they try to make phosgene and end up killing themselves.

You live in orange county? I live across the Hudson! Maybe we are all closer together than we thought...




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[*] posted on 30-4-2012 at 21:11


Quote: Originally posted by White Yeti  

You live in orange county? I live across the Hudson! Maybe we are all closer together than we thought...


I think we're talking about different Orange Counties, I'm talking about the one in southern California.
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[*] posted on 1-5-2012 at 18:21


Also if I may add, amino acids are very sought after and expensive. If we find ways to synthesise essential amino acids in large quantities from cheap starting materials, we can generate a decent revenue. Then you have to choose between total synthesis and biosynthesis, both of which are quite challenging.



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[*] posted on 2-5-2012 at 05:09


Amino acids aren't particularly expensive (see: http://www.purebulk.com/ ). Anyway, hackspace is generally not about making money.



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[*] posted on 5-5-2012 at 19:55


Quote: Originally posted by bbartlog  
hackspace is generally not about making money.


That's a good point, we don't want to focus on making money to the point that we forget about science for its own sake.
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[*] posted on 19-7-2012 at 09:52


This is something that's been on my mind for a while - either a 'regular' or chemistry related hackspace, as I have neither (well, obviously not the latter) in my area.

Something I feel we often overlook as amateurs (mostly due to cost) is the analysis of our materials beyond maybe boiling point, specific gravity and the like.

Whilst a synthesis oriented hacker-lab might raise more than a few eyebrows, and brings up potential legal implications, has anyone considered an analytical chemistry hackspace?

Now, I'm not saying that a bunch of us grouping together would be able to purchase and run and NMR machine, but an old, second-hand FTIR? Maybe...

On top of that (for example) pro-melting point apparatus, polarimeters, centrifuges and all the other 'little' toys that are just a bit too expensive for most of us to justify alone would be quite resonable investments as a group. All of this without (the majority of) the legal/societal issues; it's just another independent analytical lab after all!
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[*] posted on 19-7-2012 at 20:53


I really agree Dave! Lack of modern testing equipment has to be one of the very biggest barriers to amateur success.



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[*] posted on 23-7-2012 at 18:32


In regard to the map of people who would want to join, how's this? Just add a marker in your general location.
http://zeemaps.com/map?group=388676&add=1
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thumbup.gif posted on 26-7-2012 at 10:40


Nice idea liquidlightning; you have my location.

So far, the 3 of us who have posted couldn't live much further apart! Let's hope this picks up - I'll stick it in my signature.




Find your nearest fellow mad scientists! Add yourself to the Science Madness Hackspace map today!
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[*] posted on 26-7-2012 at 12:22


Added myself.



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[*] posted on 28-7-2012 at 05:37


At least we're all in the northern hemisphere:D



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[*] posted on 29-7-2012 at 05:15


I though about the idea of an open source chemistry lab before and came to the conclusion that it wouldn't work here (ireland) as there would be too many logistical challenges such as insurance, environment,licensing etc. Also if you did manage to get enough members and through all the red tape, the costs would be significant if you wanted to provide more comprehensive facilities particularly in terms of characterization where even some basic equipment can be very expensive. I came to the conclusion that this could only be done with governmental support to encourage science through out the population. And hence I would suggest that people lobby for an open access program to local colleges and universities. (maybe this exists in other countries but certainly not here) That people can gain access (under supervision or what ever) to government funded labs for research. Imagine if every college lab had to allow 5% of their time to open access programs. Say 2 weeks in the summer or something. For the most part, those not interested wouldn't care but imagine the opportunities this would give to the amateur scientist. This goes for all the sciences too. Apply to the relevant college / Prof. during the course of the year. If they are to keep their funding they have to make it available and publish a time table of excepted proposals or experiments and reasons why others if not accepted reasons why they were declined. Also it would give the post grads something new to do for a week or two!
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[*] posted on 29-7-2012 at 09:27


I gave my location but I did not want to. I did it for chemistry.



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[*] posted on 29-7-2012 at 11:27


Maybe a traveling lab ship/barge would make regulatory issues less problematic, and could serve a wider area? LOL



A word to the wise: NEUROFEEDBACK

http://citizenworks.org/corp/dg/s2r1.pdf
http://www.newscientist.com/mobile/article/mg21228354.500-re...
http://www.shadowstats.com/article/no-414-hyperinflation-spe...

"To expose a 15 Trillion dollar ripoff of the American people by the stockholders of the 1000 largest corporations over the last 100 years will be a tall order of business."
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