Saturday, January 11, 2014

Using LeJOS to write write programs for the EV3

Over the years I have thought many times of getting in to Android development; buying books, reading up online tutorials and such. But every time I would be driven away by the sheer ugliness, unusability and slowness of Eclipse. It wasn't until I discovered IntelliJ that I could start making sense of Android and now that is what I do for a living.

What this means is that when I bought the Lego Mindstorms EV3 and installed LeJOS on it the next step was figuring out how to develop programs for it on IntelliJ (and not Eclipse as suggested by the guys at LeJOS, but what do they know). This post explains how to do it on Windows and since IntelliJ is multi-platform the instructions can be ported trivially to Linux.

A few clarifications to the instructions follow:

The LeJOS source code (the classes required for development - think of it as the SDK) can be acquired using:
    git clone git://

Once the repo has been cloned switch to the latest release (0.5.0-alpha):
    git checkout 0.5.0-alpha
This will place you in a HEAD-less state but that is alright.

Your main class doesn't need to be labelled "Main". It just needs to implement the function public static void main(String[] args). This class serves as the entry point in to your application (execution starts in the main function/method. Just remember to use the actual name of the class in the MANIFEST.MD file when specifying the Main-Class value.

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