Robotics/Exotic Robots/The LEGO World/LEGO Robots

LEGO has created the Robotics Invention System, which is essentially a LEGO set which may be used to build and prototype robot designs.

The main components provided are,

  • 2 Motors
  • 2 Touch sensors
  • Light detector
  • RCX (Robotic Command Explorer) controller

These can be used with Technic Lego such as cogs, axles, gears and other components to build reasonably complex systems.


The robot interfaces to a PC through the RCX controller using either an RS-232 serial port and cable, or an infrared (IR) transceiver connected to a USB port. The program can be executed through the connection in real time or downloaded to and stored on the RCX controller. Downloading and storing the program allows the robot to run autonomously without the need to be tethered to the computer.

Programming and SoftwareEdit

Lego provide their own GUI Software [1] to program the RCX controller. The versatility of the LEGO system, and the added sophistication you get with scripting languages has meant other people have developed their own programming languages to control the RCX, namely,

  • NQC - Not quite C: A C derived scripting language.
  • lejos - Robots control in Java.