31 March 2011

Ion Torrent's Tilt-Shift View of the Future

What does tilt-shift photography have to do with Ion Torrent? Yesterday I would have said "nothing", but then they released a video that is apparently dedicated to it. Don't get me wrong, it's a really cool effect that makes everything look miniature, but I'm struggling to figure out what it has to do with next gen sequencing. The PGM acts as an iPod cradle; maybe it also doubles as a camera?

For your enjoyment, a pointless but cool video:

14 March 2011

Ion Torrent's $1 Trillion Investment

Ion Torrent has a new video out (see link below). In addition to reminding everyone that they're building on the $1 Trillion investment made in the semiconductor industry (not exactly sure how relevant that is), they also show images of the 314 and 316 wafers. From the images, it looks like the 316 chips are roughly 5x the size of the 314 chips (~74 chips/wafer for the 316 chip vs ~350 chips/wafer for the 314 chip). That more or less fits in with the 5x increase in number of sensors/chip (1.2M vs 6M). It's impressive that this 5-fold size increase only resulted in a 2-fold price increase ($250 to $500). Their next chip, the 318 which is slated for 4Q2011, will roughly double the number of sensors to 11M while holding the price at $500. If they have to keep increasing the size of the new chips, it seems like it will be difficult to keep the price at the current level. It will be interesting to see if they start increasing sensor density rather than just chip size.

Ion Torrent's video

06 March 2011

Riveting ad copy

Here is 454's latest ad for the GS Junior...

...with some absolutely scintillating copy...

"The PicoTiterPlate (PTP) device is placed in the Bead Deposition Device (BDD) in preparation for pipetting beads onto the PTP. The PTP remains in the BDD until ready for sequencing."

Nothing like a few TLAs to spice up your ad. Riveting!