2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight: The Indie Science Revolution

Written by Megan Simpson | February 4, 2014

Jacob Shiach talks about the indie science revolution at SXSW 2014

Jacob Shiach wants to share his own experiences in the hope that others will take the leap to become an indie scientists. In this installment of the Session Spotlight, we learn about Shiach’s 2014 SXSW Interactive panel, “The Indie Science Revolution”. The panel promises to share why independent science matters. For more from Shiach, follow him on Twitter @jacobshiach where he tweets about science and randomness.

SXSW: What topic will your panel address at SXSW?
Shiach: We will be covering the topics of independent science, some of the benefits, the risks and why it's essential for the future of science. As well as the path to get started, resources you have available to you, how to fund yourself and what it's like once you are an indie scientist.

SXSW: Who else is joining you on the panel?
Shiach: Daniel Grushkin, the moderator, is a journalist who has written extensively on the matter, as well as being a cofounder of Genspace, a community bio lab in Brooklyn. Not only does he have experience as a participant in the subject, he also knows what questions to ask the panel to get worthwhile responses. Ethan Perlstein, left an academic post to become an independent scientist. He did so by first crowdfunding his research lab with a campaign titled "Crowdfund my Meth lab", an amphetamine research study. He is the founder of a B Corporation research company that aims to find cures for rare diseases. Cindy Wu is the founder of Microryza, a crowdfunding site where science is the reward. She is a former researcher.

SXSW: Why should SXSW registrants attend this session?
Shiach: How we go about doing research is changing at an ever increasing pace. If anyone is interested in science or the technologies that sometimes stem from it, they might be interested in hearing about how more and more scientists are becoming independents.

SXSW: What excites you most about "The Indie Science Revolution"?
Shiach: I'm pretty excited about being able share some of my own experiences and hurdles getting started and maybe that will help someone else take the leap to becoming an Indie. And also I'm pretty excited to meet everyone who shows up and see what questions they have for us.

SXSW: Not necessarily related to your topic at SXSW, what is your favorite movie?
Shiach: The Great Dictator by Charlie Chaplin. It's comedy is timeless and is simply great film making. Plus the speech at the end is quite possibly the most moving and inspirational thing that I have heard.

SXSW: Does the future of technology frighten or excite you?
Shiach: Neither, we already have the means and the ability to do truly exciting and frightening things with the current state of technology. Yet we still use outdated technologies we are comfortable and familiar with.

Watch this website for more installments of the 2014 SXSW Interactive Session Spotlight. Click here for the complete list of programming for March in Austin. For tips on interesting sessions to attend, visit the new Recommendation page. Register now to attend “The Indie Science Revolution” and other incredible programming at SXSW Interactive 2014.