De Gustibus, or Hacking your Tastebuds

Presented at DEF CON 17 (2009), Aug. 2, 2009, 4 p.m. (50 minutes)

Do you geek out over food? Do you rave over a particular vintage? Do you get into fights about relative merits of belgain vs. swiss chocolatiers? Know the difference between a Gourmet and a Gourmand? Ever done a real chocolate tasting? Wondered what's the big deal with food/wine parings? Ever tried Miracle Fruit? Like any other electrical/chemical machine the body can be hacked and that includes the tastebuds. Let's discuss taste, and then let's taste stuff! For a small fee ( < $2.00) you can choose to take part in a food/wine paring, A blind chocolate tasting (rating forms, will be provided, see how you compare to the experts) or experiment with Miracle Fruit (along with many things to try it out on), Real Vintage Balsamic Vinegar (like syrup) - Also feel free to bring something you've discovered and want others to try.


  • Sandy Clark / Mouse - University of Pennsylvania   as Sandy Clark "Mouse"
    Sandy Clark (Mouse) has been taking things apart since the age of two, and still hasn't learned to put them back together. That includes playing with her food. She has been known to starve rather than eat bad food, and spends way too much time exploring new flavors. An active member of the Hacker community, her professional work includes an Air Force Flight Control Computer, a simulator for NASA and singing at Carnegie Hall. She is currently fulfilling a childhood dream, pursuing a Ph.D. in C.S. at the University of Pennsylvania. A founding member of Toool-USA, she also enjoys puzzles, toys, Mao (the card game), and anything that involves night vision goggles. Her research explores human scale security and the unexpected ways that systems interact.


Similar Presentations: