Started in 2008, Steep Hill Lab of Oakland has continually pushed a revolution in medical pot. It was the first to test Harborside Health Center's weed for safety and potency, and it fomented a cannabis lab boom that continues to this day. Patients can now choose how strong a medicine they want, and Steep Hill helped create the market for more medicinal, cannabidiol-rich pot — a distinctly non-psychoactive weed, compared to the street stuff. Now the lab has released QuantaCann, a near-infrared sensor setup for clubs and growers. QuantaCann can estimate a cannabis sample's potency in three minutes instead of three to five days. Steep Hill's rapid potency testing changes the parameters of the weed enterprise, from seed to smoke. For scientific innovations in the face of a federal crackdown, Steep Hill Labs earns our award for the East Bay's Most Fearless Cannabis Scientists.