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If Indiegogo doesn't suspend them too, it could be a real watershed moment for them. It'll brand them as the place to go for scam products.



They already are.



I'm assuming from the context you're touting that as an example of a "scam product" - first time I've heard of them but http://tellspec.com/order/ has beta device for purchase at present and they appear to be getting plaudits eg "Selected to be part of the HIVE at TED Med 2015" is on their website (and confirmed at TED MED).

Surely ordering the beta would show straight away that the product was entirely non-functional (ie fake)?

Did I miss something that you're relying on to form this opinion?

Edit: perhaps http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/small-busi... ?


Yes, almost certainly a scam, for a few reasons. The first being that hand-held Raman spectroscopy devices are currently the realm of extremely pricey systems that are targeted at industry primarily (we're talking $10k at the very, very low end). Building a hand-held device that could do even a tiny fraction of what those units are capable of would be hugely disruptive for that market. So why not approach that market at all? Probably because it's vastly more savvy than consumers. Additionally, there is absolutely zero hard info anywhere about their device, it's design, it's specs, anything like that. Not only isn't there a specrum, there isn't even a "this is what a spectrum from our final equipment might look like" representation. It's all smoke and mirrors.

The biggest giveaway in that particular campaign though is something that most ordinary people won't pick up on: gluten. You tell someone that a spectrometer can detect sugar, they'll nod, you tell someone that it can detect gluten and they'll still nod, but people who know better will have their ears perk up. Because gluten is just a protein, and proteins are a nightmare when it comes to spectroscopy. Spectroscopy picks up the different bonds that are in a molecule. A simple molecule with only a few, very different bonds is easy to distinguish. But proteins are polymers made up of tens of thousands to millions of amino-acids, which blur together in spectroscopy. To distinguish different proteins from one another with any kind of spectroscopy (whether Raman, IR, or even NMR) requires high end equipment which can give you very high resolution spectra. A low cost, consumer grade spectrometer is going to have very low resolution and be even more difficult to do. If they could pull it off it would be a tremendous breakthrough. The idea that they've made such a huge leap without seeking traditional investors to go after the industrial market, without any substantive research backing is, frankly, not robust against the much more realistic probability that they are pulling some sort of scam that involves a device that maybe has some capability or other but is nothing like what they say it is.




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