Hardware, Software & the Internet of Things
June 23–25, 2015 • San Francisco, CA

Assembling custom DNA anytime, anywhere

Connor Dickie (Synbiota Inc.), Justin Pahara (Synbiota Inc.)
2:55pm–3:35pm Wednesday, 06/24/2015
Location: Generals Residence
Average rating: ****.
(4.40, 5 ratings)

Prerequisite Knowledge

• Think of this session as a detailed demo. On the level of a cooking class. • No significant knowledge in bio, chemistry, math, computer science, art, or engineering are needed. • If you understand Lego and Lego kits, you will be good to go.


One of the main technologies in a bio-hacker’s toolbox is the ability to make custom DNA. This session walks you through the process of designing and building custom plasmids using Synbiota’s wetware kits. Synbiota’s wetware uses a unique magnetic-bead assembly process that enables anyone to build real DNA, by hand or by robot, in any kitchen, bathroom, basement, or garage.

  • A live on-stage demo of building a plasmid in just 40 minutes
  • Build will be carried out simultaneously by hand and by OpenTrons robot
  • We’ll explore cool projects and possibilities that have been built with the kit
Photo of Connor Dickie

Connor Dickie

Synbiota Inc.

Connor Dickie co-founded Synbiota Inc. to accelerate biotechnology R&D. Synbiota is a rapid prototyping software/wetware platform for synthetic biology that puts the power of life into the hands of enthusiasts and researchers around the globe. Connor is an alumnus of the MIT Media Lab where he created context-sensitive and attention-aware computers that have since been commercialized by Samsung. Connor is an alumnus of Mozilla’s WebFWD program, and winner of the 2014 SXSW Interactive Accelerator. Connor is also co-founder of DIYBio communities in Toronto and Montreal.

Justin Pahara

Synbiota Inc.

Justin has more than a decade of bioengineering experience as well as extensive knowledge of synthetic biology tech, markets, and work-flows. Justin learned stuff at the University of Cambridge (PhD, MoTI in JBS), Singularity University (GSP-10; Google Fellow), iGEM (2007, 2008), the University of Alberta (B.Sc., M.Sc.), and of course, the internet.