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Hardware Hacking Open Source Science Build

An $80 Open Source Chemical Analyzer 51

An anonymous reader writes "A group of electrical engineering students at UCSB teamed up with some chemists and built an $80 gadget that can check water for arsenic, measure the level of vitamin C in orange juice, and also do simple DNA biosensor tests. The electronics in a blood sugar meter could do all of those things, but their firmware isn't easily hackable. All of the circuit schematics, gerber files, and software for this project are available on their project website. Another team at Denver Metro College is working to improve upon their design. Eventually, it could be used as a teaching tool in chemistry classrooms, or possibly to do blood and water tests in developing countries."
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An $80 Open Source Chemical Analyzer

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  • by Ihmhi ( 1206036 ) <> on Wednesday September 14, 2011 @06:57AM (#37396788)

    Is this news for nerds just because it is open source? I mean - a potentiostat? Really?

    What measure is a nerd?

    Years ago, I didn't know what "^H^H^H^H^H" meant. (It is, apparently, how one typed a backspace on a rather old type of computer). When I asked what it meant (as it had interested me) I was told by a few kind persons, but I was also chided about not knowing about an obscure computer that was popular before I was born.

    Your nerdiness is not my nerdiness. I personally judge whether or not a story is good for Slashdot by the likelihood of seeing it on CNN (when it isn't related to a major event such as a natural disaster or a major product release). Would you see anything like this on the front page of Faux News or even a much more reputable outlet like the BBC? (According to my BBC RSS feed, the answer is firmly in the negative.)

    Geek culture is a mysterious, ethereal thing that spans interests of many different types and complexities. Ignore a story about something that doesn't interest you, sure - I don't read 3/4 of the articles Slashdot posts - but please don't chastise them for actually posting something that's relevant to using technology (cheaply!) to do something cool that will actually help people. Strike that last - just using technology to do something cool.

    Hey, at least it's not a story about Bitcoin or the latest Apple drivel.

Experience varies directly with equipment ruined.