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Programming your robot is done in Python, specifically version 3.9.6. You can learn more about Python from their docs, and our whirlwind tour.

Each board has an API which allows its various functionality to be controlled.


The following two lines are required to complete initialisation of the kit:

from sbot import Robot

robot = Robot()

Once this has been done, this Robot object can be used to control the robot's functions.

The remainder of the tutorials pages will assume your Robot object is defined as robot.


In Python, variables are case-sensitive. robot is an instance of Robot.

Running your code

Your code needs to be put on a USB drive in a file called When connected to the robot, this file will be executed. The file is directly executed off your USB drive, with your drive as the working directory.


If this file is missing or incorrectly named, your robot won't do anything. No log file will be created.

To stop your code running, you can just remove the USB drive. This will also stop the motors and any other peripherals connected to the kit.

You can then reinsert the USB drive into the robot, and it will run your again (from the start). This allows you to make changes and test them quickly.


A log file is saved to your USB so you can see what your robot did, what it didn't do, and any errors it raised. The file is saved to log.txt in the top-level directory of the USB drive.


The latest log is always called log.txt, if the code is rerun the previous log will be renamed with an increasing number suffix

Running Code before pressing the start button

If you want to do things before the start button press, such as setting up servos or motors, you can pass wait_for_start to the Robot constructor. You will then need to wait for the start button manually using robot.wait_start().

robot = Robot(wait_for_start=False)

# Do your setup here


Debug mode

It is possible to run your robot in "Debug Mode".

In "Debug Mode", your robot will print more information about what it is doing.

from sbot import Robot

robot = Robot(debug=True)


Debug mode is very verbose. It will print a lot of information that you may not need.

Included Libraries

Python comes with plenty of built-in libraries to use. We install some extra ones which may be of use:


If you would like an extra library installed, go and ask a volunteer to see if we can help.