Self organizing systems, concurrency, distributed algorithms, robotics, molecules and control theory.
- 1/25: Today we plated up some K-25 from a slant and stuck the plates in the incubator. Josh and I made lame petri dishes with lumpy agar. Ranjana's was, of course, perfect. We discovered that we don't have much of what we need for the next step, in particular a shaker-incubator. So we spent most of the time scoping out and ordering equipment. Later in the day, I ordered a shaker-incubator, a water bath, another set of pipettors and two more owl gel boxes.
- 1/26: We took the plates out of the incubator and put them in the refrigerator that we inherited with a bunch of possibly abandoned stuff in it. The frig doesn't smell very good. We will need to figure out how to dispose of everything and then clean the frig really well. Josh and I also perused the biobricks wiki and dreamed of the possibilities. It looks like there will be more equipment that we will need if we want to do anything beyond what is in our textbook. Sigh. In for a penny in for a pound, I suppose.
- 2/1: We transfer plated e. coli to LB suspensions today. Our shaker incubator has not arrived yet, so we had to "invent" something: a vortexer with a styrofoam tub holder taped to the top -- all stuck into an incubator. It is a little too vigourous. I hope it holds up for the next 20 hours. This is definitely not a long term solution! We also visited the chem-shop for supplies: test-tube racks, foil and pens. The new water-bath and another set of pippetors showed up too.
- 2/2: Well, the shaker sort of fell apart sometime in the night, but things seem fine anyway. Nothing spilled. Today we made a new suspension and measured the OD every 20 minutes to see the growth curve. This worked great! We also looked at the bugs in the microscope and made a nice movie of them swimming around. They all seemed quite please with the LB. We grew the cultures in 500ml flasks, which we had to clean. Our autoclave sterilizes, but makes things dirty somehow on the outside of the flasks. I think the basket is rusty.
- 2/8, 2/15: We tried the restriction analysis twice. The first time, we all got terrible gels. The second time, it got a bit better, mostly due to the fact that we had all the proper reagents. But we still need to produce gels reliably, so I think we will practice some more. In the mean time, we got a new shaker-incubator -- it is beginning to look like a real lab!
- 2/22-2/23: I was out of town, but Josh and Ranjana did the rapid colony transformation. It seemed to work, but not fabulously. I think we need to use freshly plated e coli -- so we'll try it again.