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When the hit sitcom The Big Bang Theory first came along few of us ever thought that it would be a success. A couple of goofy scientists trying to make jokes did not appear to be a brilliant idea until we got to know and love Sheldon and company.
So perhaps we have to go through the same process with the Big Brain Theory, a reality series in which engineering enthusiasts are challenged to make amazing things every half an hour.
Each week an engineering challenge is presented to the brainy contestants, who then have to find a smart solution to the given problem. The only tool they have is an electronic blackboard.
Although they may all produce great ideas, the judges only select two people with the best solutions to proceed to the next round. The pair create a team from the failed contestants and together they take the winning idea and build it into something practical that be used by the public.
The “winners” and their team are given a limited budget and time in the workshop. They build whatever solution they had proposed and, when they are finished, the products are tested.
If the product doesn’t work then the builder is elim- inated. Sometimes both ideas bomb out, literally, and when that happens both parties are up for eviction.
The overall winner of the competition gets a cool $50 000 (around R500 000).
You may not be a techno bug but you might just be curious how the remote to your gate works or the mechanism of your blender.
This show is a little like How Stuff Works, only with the scientists competing and exploring several ways to reach one solution. It’s sure to spark your curiosity.
• The Big Brain Theory premiers on Wednesday August 28 at Discvoery Channel (DStv channel 121) at 9.25pm.