After a Twelve Year Hiatus, BattleBots Returns on ABC!

Everything old is new again – and when it comes to some of the most interesting programming ever witnessed on cable television that’s hardly ever a bad thing. Earlier this year, ABC announced that it had picked up the highly popular franchise BattleBots, green lighting a six-episode commitment for 2015. If you’ve never seen the show, BattleBots is essentially what it's refreshingly accurate title suggests it is: two homemade robots enter an arena full of spinning blades, crushing pneumatic hammers, and powerful flamethrowers with only one solitary purpose – to destroy or be destroyed.

Battlebots
Source: ABC BattleBots

Aside from some subtle differences (the elimination of weight classes and the addition of contestant backstories aimed at endearing competitors to the audience) the format remains largely unchanged. The primary difference between the original run that ended in 2002 and today’s contemporary version is that the robots entering the arena these days are much stronger, faster, and incredibly more sophisticated than their turn of the century forebears.

And while you might agree that to base an entire reality TV series around the construction and competitive annihilation of remote-controlled wielders of mayhem, it wouldn’t be unfair to ask, why bring it back? Why now?

The reason may lie in the knowledge that the robotics industry has been growing by leaps and bounds over the last decade; new applications for advanced robotic technology are being discovered almost on a daily basis in a wide range of fields like healthcare, national defense, and deep sea exploration. That being said it wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination to suggest that ABC has recognized society’s growing fascination with new and emerging technology and wants to capitalize on it – and good on them for doing so.

Skills You’ll Need to Develop Before Entering the Ring – Or Defining a Career
Watching the show might give the viewer a false impression about how easy things like building a robot from scratch or programming an automation process really is. The fact is, there are many, many skills you’ll need to master before you could ever think about building a contending BattleBot – let alone develop new technology in any of the growing fields mentioned above. George Brown College offers a number of online technology programs to help you reach your goal – whatever it may be.

Programmable Logic Controllers: The Unsung Heroes of Robotics
Without PLCs, our world would not be the world we know today. PLCs are responsible for programming the logic control software that powers the heavy industrial and manufacturing equipment that essentially drives our economy. As demand for consumer and industrial goods rises, manufacturers are requiring more and more sophisticated machinery to manufacture their products in an efficient and cost-effective way.

The Technical Prowess of an Electronic Technician
Whether you’re determined to build your own robot in your garage at home, or are interested in the repair and maintenance of literally millions of devices that influence our daily lives, you’re going to need some technical acuity. One of the best ways to hedge your bets when considering a career in robotics is to determine which field arguably has the widest range of applicability. If you consider variety to be the spice of life, a career as an electronic technician may be right up your alley.

ETs are responsible for more than just repairing machines though – they have a hand in the entire lifecycle of a technological device, seeing a project through from the design phase to the manufacture and final installation of a product.

Electromechanical Engineers are Always On The Cusp of the Future
Whether it’s aiding in the design of a deep sea explorer, the operation of unmanned submarines or aircrafts, or maintaining servo mechanical equipment, EEs are never far from exciting or groundbreaking projects. EEs are technical problem solvers – employing mathematical, scientific, and engineering principles to get the job done.

EEs can also expect to gain employment in the highly competitive fields of research and development, product design, process analysis, and quality control.

To be fair, these professions go far beyond what it takes to create your own BattleBot. But at the end of the day, none of these fields would be anywhere if people didn’t possess a passion for technology, machinery, and robotics. Granted, a show whose primary goal is to entertain may not upon first glance appear very inspirational, but it just may be the key to unlocking the road to a highly satisfying and lucrative career.