Empower Mats.

Empower Mats: Facilitating the participation of blind or visually impaired students in competitive robotics programs.


We asked one of the students from TechBrick Robotics (http://techbrick.com) to learn Quorum and write equivalent program in EV3 and Quorum.  Lila completed 4 years for FIRST LEGO League and now has moved up to FIRST Tech Challenge. We have her a series of assignments. They are listed below. 

Her code for EV3 and Quorum can be downloaded here: zipEmpowerMats-CodeResearch1.zip

This is being provided 'as is' as an example. We cannot answer questions about the code. See the Quorum website for Q&A sources at https://quorumlanguage.com.

This video demonstrates the results of her work.

These programs demonstrate that all the functionality of the Mindstorms software is available in an accessible format for blind and visually impaired students. (Play full screen to see the code samples.)

Lila demonstrates some programs written in Quorum, accessible software for EV3. View in full screen mode to see the code clearly.

Sample Equivalency

Drive Turn Program in EV3


Drive Turn Program in Quorum


Empower Mats Reseach Tasks

Task One: Write and Document 5 EV3 Sample Programs

Task Two: Write and Document The Same Functions in Quorum

Write, test and document with screen captures, code, and photos of the robot, these basic EV3 tasks. THe consultant my modify or add to this list.

  1. Drive forward and stop three times
    1. Six inches and stop
    2. Then an additional 12 inches and stop
    3. Then an addition 24 inches and stop
    4. Be sure to use and document braking code for a clean stop and contrast non-braking and braking effects.
  2. Drive Forward and Turn
    1. Drive 12 inches and stop
    2. Turn 90 degrees clockwise
    3. Drive 6 inches and stop
    4. Turn 45 degrees counterclockwise
    5. Drive 12 inches and stop
    6. Turn 180 degrees
    7. Drive 6 inches and stop
    8. Turn 360 degrees
  3. Smooth Turns
    1. Drive 24 inches with a smooth turn in varying radii
    2. Tight circle
    3. Medium circle
    4. Large circle
    5. The using the medium circle to a right 180 degree turn then reverse to crate an S pattern.
  4. Sensors
    1. Drive forward and stop when touch sensor is actuated
    2. Drive forward and reverse when touch sensor is actuated
    3. Drive forward and stop and turn 180 degrees when touch sensor is actuated
    4. Drive forward and stop when light sensor is actuated
    5. Drive forward and reverse when light sensor is actuated
    6. Drive forward and stop and turn 180 degrees when light sensor is actuated
    7. Drive forward and reverse when ultrasonic sensor is actuated
  5. Attachments
    1. Create one attachment motor that lifts an object
    2. Drive forward to the object.
    3. Stop and lift it.
    4. May be combined with Sensors


  1. For each task capture enough screens to explain the task.
  2. Save code in an orderly naming scheme.
  3. Video the robot doing the tasks. Please use horizontal video.

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Empower Mats

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Tools to empower visually impaired students to participate in competitive robotics programs.

Robot Mats

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Build the skills of your current team with our universal training mats. They provide every scenario required to teach all the fundamentals programming and similar robotics systems.

Creative Play Mats

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These amazing mats feature imaginative, play-producing, images designed to provide just enough imagery to spur creativity.

TechBrick Education

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TechBrick is an independent robotics and STEM education program for home-schooled, public, and private school students in Harford, Baltimore, and Cecil counties in Maryland.

This project is being funded through a generous grant from the Vision Advancement Foundation (VAF) of Oklahoma. The VAF exists to provide excellence in eyecare, especially among those with distinctive needs.