Robotics Merit Badge Gets Real: Geeks Unite!

Robotics Merit Badge Gets Real: Geeks Unite!

It's not often that you hear of the Boy Scouts of America making the tech news wires. So why now? Simple: a new merit badge. That new badge just so happens to be called "Robotics," and it's easily one of hippest things to happen to BSA in some time. The Scouts currently offer over 120 badges, but the newest is the most geek-friendly of all. The Robotics badge is aimed to promote science, technology, engineering and math, and after a year or so of putting the badge criteria together, Scouts can now seek to earn it.


Officials are expecting over 10,000 Scouts to earn the badge in the next year, and the badge will require them to "design and build a robot while learning about robot movement, sensors and programming." Even video game controllers can be considered Robotics, which leads to us thinking that DIY/hacking is probably a great way to get this badge. You know things are going the way of the nerd once the Boy Scouts devote a merit badge to it. Power to the hackers!
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Now why couldn't this come out when I was in the Scouts?

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I never did boy scouts but this sounds so awesome. I have been wanting to get my nephew into some of this stuff. Although the thought of 10,000 kids building robots together sounds like it could also be a sign of the machine uprising. I thought the scouts were mostly about surviving out in the wild and such, is that wrong? I suppose having a killing machine you built yourself would work for surviving though.

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BSA is simply a organization that is designed to keep kids of the street and teach kids life skills. While most of the stuff does focus on survival and camping etc. it is good to see them embracing technology a bit.

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I did the full range from Cubscout all the way through Eagle Scout and Explorer Scout. Order of the Arrow, etc. As draco said, although there is a focus on survival and camping, they also cover things like business, Cinematography, american culture & heritage, Architecture, Chemistry, Drafting, Computers, Radio, etc.

http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/BoyScouts/AdvancementandAwards/MeritBadges.aspx

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Im a Eagle Scout as well

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Hell yeah... that is all.

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hahaha i remember I got a nuclear energy merit badge when I was in the scouts and I thought that was pushing it...

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ya, get a badge for hacking a sony platform... :P

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I've been in a camp for robotics when I was a kid, not sure anything came of it really.

Anyways, it's nice that the scouts are giving out badges for robotics now, will really motivate the kids to dabble more with DIY and electronics work.

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The short khaki shorts scared me away from boy-scouts from a young age :(

Now I almost wish I'd been able to look past that since they're involved in Nature, the Outdoors AND Technology, all things im a big fan of

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The Boy Scouts was fun for me and I am glad to see them putting this out there. Not only is it useful today think about when a 8 year old is 20 and then think about how fast technology is moving now. The pace is incredibly fast, so in 12 years not to mention 22 where will we be really. I could not predict it I am sure of that, but I know it is going to be way past where we are at today, and we are not lacking right now in many ways technically speaking if you get my drift. Yes there could be more, and it could be more integrated into daily life, but look at today compared to 20 years ago or even 10 for that matter. The internet did not exist as it does now. Yeah I used to bounce around on arcanet/IRC, and grab corporate phone numbers to chat with people who I could not even understand half of what they were saying in wherever before 91, but the net is so far past that it is not even funny. So this is great for the boy scouts as well as for the boys and girls.

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