Tag Archives: EV3

EV3 Interface

EV3 vs NXT: Software

The EV3 software is very much like the NXT.  My Code Crackers team wrote a line detection program with recovery logic on the EV3 in under 10 minutes.  This was their first time using the program.  The location of the tools pallet is different – on the NXT it is on the left and in the EV3 it is at the bottom.  Same concept, though, drag blocks to the canvas and set properties.

Inline Properties

My favorite change is inline properties, at least that is what I call it.  Properties are visible and editable on the block – no more clicking a block to modify properties in the properties window.  This makes coding faster and the code more readable.  Below are examples of the line detection program in both the NXT and EV3 software.  The program looks for a black line.  If the black line is not detected after .94 rotations, it exits the loop.  The program uses a reset motor block, loop with logic exit condition, rotation sensor, light sensor and logic block with an “Or” condition.


NXT Line Detection with Recovery Logic SampleLineDetection_ev3EV3 Line Detection with Recovery Logic Sample

Data Wires


The data wire interface is much simpler and cleaner.  The shapes, half circles and triangles, indicate what can be connected.  This is a big improvement.


Source: EV3 Help Content

Port View

EV3PortViewerWhat port is the color sensor?   In the EV3 Mindstorm software, you have access to a port viewer to see what is connected to each port.  I love this feature, no more guessing or cable tracing.

Flow Indicator

This is really cool – when connected to the brick, you visually see the program flow.   This makes debugging so much easier and fun.


EV3 Software on NXT

We also tested the EV3 software with an NXT brick.  It works.  Even if your team is not using the EV3, you may want to utilize the new software just for the inline properties.


Organizing 541 (Core Set) + 853 (Expansion Set) Legos

Plano 1374 4-By Rack System 3750 Size Tackle Box

Plano 1374 4-By Rack System 3750 Size Tackle Box

How exciting! The EV3 Core and Expansion Sets you have been waiting on for months just arrived.  Now that the stress of wondering if it will arrive in time for the Nature’s Fury challenge has been lifted, you have to start organizing and learning it.  There are several options for getting your kits organized:  you can use the Lego bins that shipped with the set, throw it all in box, hire a professional organizer or exploit a tackle box.

I love the Lego bins that ship with the kit, I use them all the time to sort stuff, but I find they are not the best solution for our kits.  The pieces get mixed up easy, and theirs doesn’t lend itself to the level of organization I prefer.  My solution?  A tackle box.  To be specific, I used a Plano 1374 4-By Rack System 3750 Size Tackle Box with the addition of a 3750 Stowaway box that fits in the top section, along with the wheels and cables.

Plano1374OpenI like the tackle box over other options because it is very portable and durable and, most importantly, it keeps pieces organized.  I would also recommend looking at solutions from Robotics Learning.  I  used their kit for the NXT, and it worked great.  Their labeling is great, and I’m eager to see what they offer for the EV3.