Lego EV3 Robot Information

CS 1150 PEEE

Preparing For Lego Mindstorms Programming

The Lego EV3 robot starts with the "brick"—the central component that houses its "computer" and allows for connections to motors, sensors, power source, and to the computer where you produce your programs. You have to add motors, wheels, etc. to your robot. Once that is done, you have to develop your programs. We will do so, using the LabView programming environments on the laptop computers in the cart. More detailed instructions for building your robot and programming it are provided below.

You will need to get a brick and a box of robot parts in order to do your work. When you get the brick, notice how it is plugged in so you can plug it in again when class is over. Have fun!

Build the Robot

Once you have your brick and box of parts, open your box. You should see a cardboard top with various pictures. On the reverse of the top is a guide to what is in each tray. (You may also find a sheet of paper with the same guide). Remove the top and the tray of small parts. Below the tray you will find wheels, motors, wires, etc, and a pictorial instruction booklet to guide putting together your robot. Turn to page 7 to start construction. Follow the guide through page 38 to put together a basic robot. Stop adding parts at that point and start programming.

Programming the Brick

Start up LegoMindstorms (LabView)

Click on the Start/Windows icon (lower left of the screen) and select "All apps" at the bottom of the window. Scroll down to "LEGO MINDSTROMS Educati..." and click on the "LEGO MINDSTROMS Educati..." application. You can look around or go straight to programming.

At the bottom right of the screen is the window that allow communication with the robot's "brick" or controller.

Some initial tasks before you start programming:

Developing Programs

You may wish to view Darren Wilson's video that provides some information about settings on the various blocks.

Start programming. Some (perhaps) useful information is given below.

Here are some tasks you should accomplish with your Lego robot

If you complete these building blocks in the time allowed, you might consider putting them together to do larger tasks or identify additional building blocks for some larger task, e.g.,

Your Own Software

Until recently, the software for the EV3 robot had to be purchased (in addition to purchasing the robot). However the software is now available for download. So, if you'd rather use your own computer instead of one of our laptops, you should be able to download and install the Lego Mindstorms EV3 software. I found it at You will need the computer version (PC/MAC) not the tablet version or the smartphone app.

Note that there is a little additional information on the site about programming the robot (via the Learn to Program button). A users guide is also available. You can download it if you wish to have that additional resource.