The Nature neuroscience podcast, also known as the neuropod had this an interesting clip about a company called "Backyard Brains". Backyard brains is a company who tries to bring neuroscience to the amateurs. In other words they try to make neuroscience instruments cheap. Cheap here means that they sell you a "spiker box" for 99 USD. What can a spike box do? A spiker box will let you record action potentials from live cells. Further increasing the "coolness" of their product is that they have iphone/android applications that will let you display the spikes in your smartphone. As soon as I get a little bit richer I will buy one and then publish recordings from whatever I can find right here on this blog. This is seriously cool (and a little nerdy) stuff. Go buy!
Backyard Brains hope that their endeavor will lead to amateurs going into neuroscience and expand the field just like amateur astronomers have made very important contributions to the study of astronomy.
To conclude, although I have never tried the spikerbox I just cannot conceive a scenario where I would not love this thing. I you are still skeptical, check out their video below, it will blow you away!