Wednesday, June 2, 2010

An overdose of awesomeness

I have been silent for a really long time, but many things have been going on in my life. LavaAmp, my project of a pocket sized thermal cycler, has thrived and now we have a prototype. Currently I am in Boulder, Colorado, at the Unreasonable Institute, a training program for social entrepreneurs. This has been sponsored by more than 50 people from several countries, who believe in our project, in our vision of a world where DNA tests are accessible and ubiquitous, where biotechnology is democratized, available for local applications, rather than controlled by a few labs and even fewer corporations.

This is a letter to my supporters, the ones that are making possible this dream I am currently living in. Now I am even more globally connected, astounded of how empathy, love, compassion and friendship can be delivered with a click, how a difference can be made with a stream of bits.

Dear Unreasonable supporters,

As I sit to write this, I am filled with tons of emotions. An
increased gratefulness to you, my friends and supporters for making
this possible, an increasing awe to be among such great personalities,
that it seem will shape the future and make a difference for millions,
and a bit of uncertainty of what will happen during this, my
unreasonable summer. I am at the same time exhausted, but happy and
expectant, exposed to so many new ideas, worldviews and people,
learning, evaluating our achievements and improving our pitch.

This is only my second day at the Unreasonable Institute, but I feel
like what I have experienced and learned is densely packed in these
scarce hours, filling my brain and senses, already changing parts of
me. Of course, I do not agree with everything I am taught, it is in my
nature to be skeptical and questioning, but the mere exposition to
unfamiliar points of view gives me new ideas and arguments, enriching
my mind, adding diversity to my inner life. The part that I accept
nurtures me and teaches me, wisdom filling previously blind spots,
increasing my awareness. The distilled experience of our mentors
helping me to polish the presentation of our venture, this, our joint
dream of accessible diagnostics and democratized biotechnology.

I have some good news for you: I was selected as a TED (Technology,
Entertainment, Design) Fellow, and I will travel to Oxford, England,
to attend and speak at TEDGlobal 2010, a prestigious conference packed
with top people in their areas I
will go to England for a week, and while I am there, LavaAmp's
co-funder, Joseph Jackson, will be here in Boulder, experiencing the
atmosphere of the Unreasonable Institute and learning how to make a
better company that will be able to make an effective impact in the
world. I am attending to TED because your support gave me the courage
to apply and try to get in, because you knew that this vision is not a
mirage or a delusion, but the seed of something greater, potentially
life changing for millions of people.

I want to thank you yet again, even if truly there are no words in any
human language to express what I feel, this joy an expectation that
overflows my being. Were if not because of you, this would not be
possible and LavaAmp could be yet another discarded dream in the land
of the what-ifs. Success is not certain and the road ahead is long and
bumpy, surprises and unexpected trouble will arise, but knowing I am
not alone will make things easier. I appreciate that you have made
this possible. I think I have an overdose of awesomeness, and yet,
this is only the second day, I repeat to myself. The summer is still
young and full of promise. I will do my best so your contribution to
this is not wasted, so that in the future you can be proud of
supporting LavaAmp and know you were able to make a difference in a
key moment. Thank you, again and again.


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