"How We Spent $500 on Tech to Ship $2.6M of Soylent"

First four months of Soylent was shipped via a hacked-together system on around $500;

Inspiring to anyone who wants to do something new with few resources.


You beat me too it! I hope you enjoyed the blog.


The conversation is very interesting. Through their responses, I can see why customer service was getting swamped in you guys’ early days. Lots of good nuggets of information for anyone who has ever thought about starting a company though, and the types of things that need to be overcome.

I really enjoyed the article.

No wonder the early days where a shipping nightmare.

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@inquirerer has a chip implant similar to Rob’s neodymium magnet, except this one alerts him when someone is talking about Soylent :stuck_out_tongue:

But seriously, you post great stuff. More than once I’ve searched the forum first before posting something I thought was brand new only to find you too beat me to it. X)


Haha, I would choose a different sixth sense if I had a say in it.

I didn’t know Rob had one of those neodymium magnet implants. I have heard of people getting those to sense electromagnetic currents and such but didn’t realize he had one. I always thought if I worked with live wires a lot it would be a good investment to do something like that.

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Interesting blog. I’ve always thought they should write a book about what was really going on behind the scenes. Things like why they stopped participating in the forum. Were they told not to from the venture capitalists?

Lack of forum interaction mostly stemmed from to few people wearing too many hats. When one employee has 4 or 5 roles it’s hard to always be on the forums and respond to everything. One of the reasons I was brought on was to help address that problem. The Soylent community is a huge reason the product is special.


I didn’t want to start a thread about this, and I didn’t really know where to put it, but since we were talking about Rob’s neodymium magnet implant, I thought it might be a good place.

A new bionic lens implant is promising to improve vision of virtually everyone beyond 20/20:

(If you google “ocumetics bionic lenses” you will get a ton more)

I am seriously thinking about getting this done if it pans out.


Ooooh. Sounds interesting. I have 20/20 but if they can devise “previews” so I have an idea of what it’ll be like, I’d definitely consider it. I’m imagining some freak accident where one of the beta testers wakes up and has super x-ray vision and then joins Marvel and helps track down dirty Pu bombs and stuff.

I’m pretty close minded about implants, but explants (a word I just invented) pique my interest much more. If it ever becomes possible - and affordable - I would love to have my odor and sweat glands removed or altered so I don’t need deodorant or daily showers. In South Korea, deodorant is very difficult to find because much of the population evolved to not produce underarm odor. This is a far cry from head-to-toe odor free, but a step in the right direction. To top it off, I want to permanently stop fingernail and toenail growth AND hair growth on about 90% of my body. Again for odor, but also because grooming can take an awful long time, its messy and it can irritate one’s skin.

So, overall, I just want to be super clean. I might even get synthetic hair that doesn’t need shampooed or conditioned.

Several of the articles say “3x” better than 20/20 and that it should be available in the next 2 years. (which is likely overly optimistic marketing)

I’d be down for the sweat/odor thing. Maybe nanobots of the future will help with that.

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Translated from journalist hype to reality, the engineers probably meant to claim that a prototype would be able to be tested in that timeframe. The picture doesn’t make it look… particularly comfortable.

I don’t know if nanobots would be initially needed for the odor problem. Certainly not for hair follicle removal. The body is basically made of tubes. Ideally all you’d need to do is block the tubes and reroute the “waste”, probably through the excretory system. Then again, the body sweats a LOT in a day, so this trick might end up making me need to pee 10x more.

On second thought, maybe nano would be the way to go. Whether or not one should pass up the risk of prototypes and patiently wait for potentially better technology is something that people are asking themselves more and more these days.

Perhaps. It is an actual surgery though, They would be removing the lens of the eye and replacing it with an artificial one, although only an 8-minute surgery. (if the information in the articles is to be believed)

Oh I see! (lol) Well, the body tends to integrate things well when they aren’t toxic, as far as I know. This doesn’t seem terribly unsafe.

I’d love synthetic teeth too. Brushing and flossing is a huge waste of time, taken cumulatively.

Africa is going to come online in the next few decades, and when they do they’re going to look back at posts like this and think “nice… good to know where your priorities were, guys…”

The sweat gland removal idea seems neat (although the body will have fewer ways to remove heat from within itseIf if that happens). But i enjoy brushing, but hate shaving, i would love for a temporary (for a few weeks) permanent hair removal solution for the face, and permanent permanent hair removal on the body. I am quite hairy and i loathe it.

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