Chapter 11. Community Announcements


As scientists, we are constantly expanding the frontiers of research and knowledge. Yet, we are also constantly rediscovering knowledge that others have not had the time to publish and improving existing methods without the ability to share the improvements with the world. Our publishing system is essentially the same as it was in the days of Mendel. The mission of ZappyLab is to change this with—a free, up-to-date, crowdsourced protocol repository for the life sciences.

As part of this effort, to create a community for the crowdsourcing of the protocols, we have during the past two years released a panel of free mobile and web tools for researchers. This includes Bench Tools, a mobile platform (iOS and Android) for laboratory work that replaces many expensive and outdated devices in the lab. Importantly, any protocol entered into is then available inside Bench Tools as a checklist to help in the experimental procedure.

Follow us on Twitter @zappylab for updates on and our laboratory apps.

Bio {design} Conference

Bio {design} is a three-day, hands-on exploration of what is possible when using living things as tools, mediums, and models in the iterative act of creation. For more information, go to

BioLogik Labs

BioLogik Labs is a community biohackerspace in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. We are an open lab focusing on DIYbio, OpenChemistry, synthetic biology, education, and the arts. We believe in cheap access to scientific tools to encourage the growth of citizen science.

We just finished a successful fundraising campaign on and are in the final stages of getting the tools, supplies, and equipment needed to offer open access to everyone. There are a number of classes we are building that will offer training and techniques for advanced equipment, as well as beginner classes to provide skills in some of the most basic of tools and concepts. There are goals to create open hardware for all of the general tools needed in a lab setting. These plans will be freely available, lowering the bar to access for everyone.

We wish to inspire people to make and create art and science, to cultivate curiosity and exploration. Above all, we want everyone to feel that there are no limitations, that average citizens can and do make active contributions and groundbreaking discoveries everyday, even in this highly technological world. BioLogik is that place to come and learn, discover, and explore whatever curiosities drive your mind and to bring those great ideas into reality.

Counter Culture Labs Found a Home!

We are super excited to announce, after essentially working out of one of our cofounders' back rooms for a year, that Oakland-based Counter Culture Labs has found a wonderful new home!

We will be moving into a pioneering new space in North Oakland, which is the first of a new type of a hackerspace, melding bio, tech, and cultural hacking into one space with a collective of other hacker, art, educational, and social justice groups. We’re hoping that this new type of space democratizes access to the tools of education and innovation for the entire local community and will spread globally to ensure that everyone is empowered to dream, learn, and create, regardless of their educational background or socioeconomic status.

We’ll still have tons of work to do—if you want to stay informed of ongoing developments, join our monthly newsletter.

Upcoming projects and classes

Vegan Cheese
Our iGEM synthetic biology project, in collaboration with BioCurious (see elsewhere in this issue).
DIY Molecular Design and Cloning
Learn the basics of hands-on genetic engineering techniques with Craig Rouskey. Join the new class series in September.
The Science of the Senses series
Matt Harbowy continues his rave-winning series with the Science of Touch in July and Science of Perception in August.
DIY BioPrinting
Patrik D’haeseleer will be starting up a second team in Oakland, in collaboration with the long-running BioPrinting project at BioCurious. Two DIYbio labs—double the bioprinting fun!

Our schedule will be somewhat in flux over the next few months, but check out our upcoming events.