Instead of Medical Tourism, what about Science Education Tourism?

edited November 2015 in Everything else
I was talking with @proteus a while back about this group called Exosphere LINK, and he brought up the idea of "Science Tourism". That is, traveling to places where people have a awesome setup and getting hands on experience. Sounds familiar, right? This was when he was on his way down to Grindfest...

Exosphere does that new future tech type stuff (AI, 3d printing, blockchain tech, etc) that we all get all wiggly about, except they have money backing them and focus. Basically Grindfest, but with backers, and a theme every time everyone met up. They call in people from the field that they are currently excited about and then you show up and do a hands on bootcamp about that thing. You live at the site, you do workshops everyday. For weeks. It's the dream. I'm jealous.

Right now there is one on Artificial Intelligence. People from Singulartiy U and Turing Inc (and some others I can't recall) are there and they're doing hands on (keyboard) mentoring with people.
In January they are doing an incubator. A bunch of people will be there talking about various technologies (3d prinitng, blockchain, synthetic biology) and everyone is working on coming up with an idea to bring to the table and actually crank out in the 8 weeks of time available.
Next summer is a 3 month synthetic biology workshop.  Not much info about that right now.

The thing is, all of these happen in various locations.  Now this is just one part of it...

Then you take Grindfest and add that to the mix , add a couple of conferences in for variety (like the bodyhackingcon in Austin or the A4M in Vegas) and string it all together with a visit to the various maker, grinder, and diybiolabs (Noisebridge, grindhouse wetware, hivebio, etc) and you can basically take half year and get a pretty awesome hands on education in emerging technologies. 
What's even better is, even though you are bouncing all over the place, the cost of doing this is probably less than 2 quarters at... well just about anywhere here in the states that's a 'proper' university.

This allows people to get access to the tools and the education, without all the hoops to jump through.
Does this sound like the type of thing y'all are interested in, and also do you guys know of anyone else doing something like this? Thoughts?
I'm trying to compile a list of places to hit while doing a loop and if there are other groups doing this type of thing, so that would be awesome.


  • Um where and when!
  • In order of time, the things I mentioned:

    The A4M(anti ageing) conference is in Vegas from the 9th to the 14th in Dec. It's super pricey for a conference but it's, like, a big deal or something.

    The upcoming January Exosphere thing is HERE It's in Santiago, Chile. Also a bit spend-y, but they give you room and board in a villa on the beach, and you get to do things and potentially get into a startup.

    Grindfest is at the beginning of April (from the last update on the Slack board). That's down at the lab space in Tehachapi, CA. Only costs the ticket and chipping in for food and all you fine folk are usually there :D

    BodyHackingCon is in Austin, TX and lasts for 3 days on the weekend of the 19th of February. Tickets are cheap and you get a 25% discount for being a grinder.... Housing can be supplied by some friends down there and/or the local biohacking group.

    The Exosphere synthetic biology courses are in June-August of next year. Also in Chile.
  • Congrats the Chile thing. Looks awesome.
  • I really need to go to one of theses. I hate being stuck on the east coast.
  • I'm really looking forward to the exosphere synthetic biology courses.  Can you keep us posted when any new info comes up? 
  • Yeah. There should be more info on that by the end of January.
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