Soylent on Popsci.com


#1

Just thought I would share that Popsci has posted an article about soylent.


#2

Must be quite a repulsive DIY Soylent. Close the nose, chug, vomit…?

Two first timers on video, nothing close to that:
@3m39s http://youtu.be/I8WpksPED_Q?t=3m39s

@6m48s http://youtu.be/YvC-v0SN9aE?t=6m48s


#3

Yes her formula seems pretty far off from what most people are consuming. I wish she would have specified that it’s her own DIY version. The taste must have been pretty lousy but I guess it succeeded at filling her up.

Either way, it’s cool to see soylent in Popular Science, which I read every month as a boy.


#4

Looking at the recipe she used, which seems to be her own.

I really don’t understand why Americans have to use “cups”, “teaspoons” and “tablespoons” instead of grams and millilitres. :S


#5

I just looked at it again to check out the comments and someone just said that they ordered soylent from soylent.ca. @rob are you guys aware of this site? It looks like they are selling 1 - 3 days of “soylent” using recipes from soylentmaker.com.


#6

This post is more of a reply to soylent.ca’s sales and the fact that the recipe the girl from popsci was using was made by a biochemistry student not a nutrition store snake oil sales man or a copycat DIY

people should be extremely careful with all of these DIY formulas. someone becoming ill from an overdose due to miss labeling from the manufacturer or personal error in measurements seems like something that is just waiting to happen. Also this DIY being done by people with no experience in the medical field and lack of knowledge in general chemistry, biology and laboratory topics is dangerous.

If anyone is really committed to their own health and wants to undertake an endeavor such as this one, i would highly recommend reading some basic books.

I would recommend any chemistry book that covers nomenclature, basic units of measurements, conversions and stoichiometry.

This is a textbook i have come across, its cheap and has a fair bit of information. It is written in a way that someone with no experience in chemistry is able to understand. The mathematics used in it is limited to pre calculus although the extent required for the concepts above is very basic algebra.

Along with that, i would highly recommend that people read and understand the implications of material safety data sheets.
http://www.msds.com

Manufacturing tolerances and 3rd party testing results of manufacturing standards is something worth looking into for all suppliers.

Rob recommended these biochemistry book,

I like this textbook
http://www.amazon.com/Lehninger-Principles-Biochemistry-David-Nelson/dp/1429222638 – from my first class solely on biochemistry,


#7

I contacted the soylent.ca guy and strongly advised him to stop selling. The FDA is going to come down on him pretty hard if he continues. I really hope this does not tarnish the name or make anyone sick.


#8

Gram is mass, you have to weigh it. Cup is volume, just scoop and pour. It’s easier, and Americans are epic slackers. I find it odd that this guy friend of the author who is supposedly a chemical engineering grad student isn’t working in mass measures though. But I guess he hasn’t made himself too sick yet.


#9

Health Canada not FDA, a lot of people sell food from home, and as long as no one gets sick, i see them being able to see this with out much issue.


#10

@jsr from your article: Vancouver food inspectors can impose fines or seize high-risk, homemade products that are sold publicly, but they prefer instead to first educate individuals about the potential dangers.


#11

@VirgaHyatt True but also it seems fairly unenforced. Unless someone gets sick from it and makes a complaint or they actually start making a lot of money, it sounds like it is unlikely for health Canada to do anything.

Along with that it does not sound to hard for people to make something like this out of their home legitimately and sell it, the main issue being people getting sick a wrecking the name “soylent” or worse ending up in the hospital.

In Toronto, you can sell from home if your property is zoned for
commercial activity and your business has been approved by the local
health department, said Jim Chan, manager of the city’s Public Health
food safety program. Also, food preparation areas must be separate
from the rest of the home to ensure there is no contamination by pets
and other potential sources of illness.

Due to limited resources, however, Toronto food inspectors are
typically only able to investigate home cooks if someone has made a
complaint, and even then, as in Vancouver, they cannot inspect homes
if residents refuse them entry, he said.


#12

What I really love is how we have 2 types of “Ounces” - one for weight and one for volume. We could have also used the scoop method with milliliters and other metric volume measurements, but I think that we end up using cups and quarts due to all of our recipes and goods being measured in them, and growing up with them. Hard to change one’s ways when everything is fighting you.

My primary concern with seeing the previously linked youtube video and the article is that many appear to be showing off Soylent, which is great, but have an alternate recipe. In addition to potential health issues, the presentation will have a strong impression on others. If they have a poor experience, it will reduce their likelihood of trying the official recipe or other ones they might like better.

I feel we should attempt to positively inform others that if they did not feel that their experience was awesome, they should still give the official release or an alternate recipe a try. I am sure everyone will have their favorite mixture depending on what they are looking to get out of it and taste preference. Some people hate chocolate, most people love it. There won’t be one universal solution.

That other site selling 3-day batches is quite interesting. And the Popsci.com article has some good in it too. I really just can’t wait for my month of Soylent so I can go on the adventure myself, knowing that mine will be mixed under Rob’s command. He is my food hero!


#13

This is actually worse than I thought. She published her own, pretty bad, recipe: http://www.popsci.com/science/gallery/2013-06/my-week-soylent-liquid-diet-future

This is really bad for the image of Soylent as most people will copy her recipe.


#14

I just left a comment on the step by step guide pointing to the forums as well as Rob’s blog. Hopefully that will help to get people the right info.

Looking at her recipe I think most people will be a little thrown off by some of the measurements as well. I mean .6 tsp? .7tsp? How is the average person supposed to be able to measure that. Most people just have 1/4, 1/2 and 1 tsp measurements and most probably wouldn’t even be able to convert that to .25, .5 and so on.


#15

What kills me is that Soylent as a drink starts out bland, meaning that it is a blank canvas. You can do anything you want to it to make it taste amazing. Why someone would choose to drink a terrible build of Soylent is beyond me.


#16

Perhaps @rob should contact her directly? Seems like an important press opportunity and a way to spread the word.


#17

I say yes. Do contact her. She is effectively writing a story about a product that is NOT Soylent.

Send her a week’s worth of @rob’s own and have her write about it.


#18

In general, I do agree with you all about research and safety concerns, etc, but isn’t what the author is doing exactly what we are all doing? Nobody on this forum is using @rob’s own exact formula because it isn’t in production yet. I think an article from the perspective of an actual DIYer rather than just an outsider view is interesting, and certainly doesn’t paint the experience in a negative light (issues with soylent.ca in the comments aside).


#19

Yes, but we understand the difference whereas she went with the first jar of goop she found and downed it, at the same time writing a story on how awful it was.

Giving her the original should allow her to understand what it is all about.


#20

I don’t really know what you’re all talking about. I found the article very funny and eloquent. I’ve read some others that even said, and I quote: “…I dumped the whole thing in the sink”. Here’s the article:

The girl from Popsci was a LOT more neutral that almost every person I’ve read. In youtube every single video has SOMEONE stigmatizing Soylent. So I really don’t understand how you can thing this article can do any damage. It actually gave me curiosity about the product, others are just mean. And the guy from Gawker even wrote that as if Rob gave him the Soylent himself. And I don’t know if that’s true and Rob was looking for publicity, but either way, THAT’S a bad article.