FIRST Tech Challenge Documents

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FTC LabVIEW Training Material

This year all FTC teams will get a free copy of LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS (LVLM) 2012, you can also download LVLM 2012 now. The resources below will help get you ready for competition and help you build programming skills you can use in college and on the job. For more information please refer to the FTC Software Setup guide. Teams will then need to download the MCT Toolkit to get all of the required software components for competition. If you have any question about this material comment below, if you have technical questions be sure to post on the FTC forums.

Training for LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS

Learn the skills needed to dominate

FTC LabVIEW Quick Start Guide - The best place to get started, a 1-2 hour introduction to LVLM specific to FTC.

Great for workshops or for learning on your own.

LabVIEW Programming Fundamentals - An interactive LabVIEW training program from

Earn a LabVIEW programming badge if you complete the exam at the end. Great for students who want to self pace the training.

LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS Overview Video - Quick introduction to LVLM

What is LVLM and what tools and features does it have for working with NXT and TETRIX hardware.

Built In Training - Check out the training materials built right into Getting Started Window in LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS.

Videos Tutorials: Get oriented with all of the tools and components in LVLM.

Teach Me: Step by step tutorials for building and coding a robot.

Challenge Me: Open-ended challenges that will teach you concepts and test your skills.

FTC - Introduction to LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS: 1 hour training power point presentation

  • Introduction to LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS
  • Orientation with MCT Toolkit and FTC specific features
  • Autonomous and Teleop mode code
  • Advanced LabVIEW for FTC   - 37 minute video training for advanced LabVIEW techniques.

    Closed Loop Control

    Advanced Tips & Tricks

    TETRIX Robotics FTC Training Material

    Getting Started Guide

    Lessons: Step by step lessons for hardware constructions and programming motors and sensors.

    Extensions: Learn how to build and program grippers, dispensers, arms and launchers.

    Challenges: Open-ended competition challenges.


              TETRIX Mastery- Advanced LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS programming guide for FTC teams.

              Enable Training FTC Webinars - 1 hour, interactive, training sessions throughout the FTC season.

                   All the webinars have now been completed, but you can still watch them HERE.

              Webinar topics:

                   1. Getting Started with LVLM and LEGO NXT

                   2. LVLM programming for aensors and motors

                   3. Samantha Module, FCS Software, FTC Functions

                   4. FTC Teleop/Autonomous Templates

                   5. Intermediate LabVIEW Skills

                   6. LabVIEW Advanced Architectures Part I

                   7. LabVIEW Advanced Architectures Part II

                   8. SubVIs and Autonomous Code

    Training from the FIRST Community - Check out teams and mentors that are creating awesome LabVIEW training material.

    LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS and FTC Video Tutorial - aarontoddkennedy

    Rapid Prototyping - aarontoddkennedy

    Advanced Loops: Program a Conveyor Belt with Nested Loops - aarontoddkennedy

    Make an awesome LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS Tutorial? Let us know and we'll send you thank you gift.

         LabVIEW 101: Video Training - Video Training designed for students (This training is not specific to LVLM or FTC)

         LabVIEW Quick Reference Card - Print this out and keep it handy so you can learn your hotkeys and shortcuts.

    What Do You Think?

    If you have any comments or suggestions about LabVIEW for LEGO MINDSTORMS and FTC Specific tools, please comment on our feedback discussion.

             If you have comments or suggestions for LabVIEW itself (Bloack Diagram / Front Panel ) Then post it on the NI Idea Exchange.

    Missing Something?

    Is there a training topic you need more help on? What other material would you like to see on this site? Please submit requests in the comments below.


    Find a solution samurai

    Have questions or problems please post your issues to the FTC discussion Forums, where other teams and NI experts will help you find a solution.


    Find other fun ways to use LabVIEW (Not for competition use)

    Connect LabVIEW to your favorite comsumer electronic devices like Arduino, ChipKit, Xbox controller, Wimote, AR drone and much more.


    Here is a link to an overview of some really important points that FTC teams need to know to get ready for their competitions

    It's written for fairly young students to be able to follow. Please read everything carefully (even if you just skim over the steps that are obvious to you).

    The link contains off shoots to many other links. Things are presented in a very detailed manner.

    If you have questions, or need more help - post here or there....


    Hello. My team number is 4968.

    We are trying to program our robot with lab view. When I click create I do not see arm gripper under robot project. What shows up is blank robot, ranger, and tribot. What are we doing wrong?



    There have been some changes to the LabVIEW toolkit this year. So, don't be surprised if you come across posts/tutorials that might be out-dated. I'm happy to help you.

    A step-by-step for first time users this 2014-2015 FTC Season: 

    • 'Create Program' and go ahead and choose BLANK ROBOT as your project template.
    • You can load firmware onto the NXT from the 'NXT Terminal' (click 'Tools and Apps' at the bottom left of 'Project Center'  screen). Make sure to use a USB cable for this.
      • This will deploy 'Program Chooser'  and 'Samostat'.  Don't ever delete them, they are required for the FTC Software Inspection.
    • Set up your 'Schematic Editor'' so it matches your robot's configuration. SAVE
    • Go into 'Remote Control Editor' and map your controllers.
      • You can test using 'Prototype', but expect some added delay.
      • 'Generate Code' and deploy to the NXT.  Keep names to 15 characters or less, and avoid using special characters (especially 'dots').
        • You can now test using 'Teleop' mode. This simulates the FCS (Field COntrol System).
    • When you're ready to write some autonomy, the template is easy to find now. It is built into the 'New VI' pulldown menu.
      • Remember to connect the pink NXT strand to your first block, or nothing will happen.

    Have fun coding, and welcome to LabVIEW!