#LEGO Mindstorms RCX on OS X
After a lot of research on the web, I found it was a pain in the ass to communicate with the RCX on a MacBook Pro running OS X Mavericks.
By now, the only (and best) solution is to use NQC.
NQC is a programming language with a syntax similar to C but it's Not Quite C.
For more information and documentation: http://bricxcc.sourceforge.net/nqc/
NQC is provided as a simple command line program which acts as a compiler and a tool to communicate with your RCX hardware to transmit firmware and programs.
Follow these simple steps and you'll be able to enjoy programming your old RCX brick on a modern Intel Mac.
The only requirement is a Serial to USB adapter to connect the IR Tower to your computer.
Find a cheap one based on the PL2303 chip and install the kernel extension:
(I don't know if NQC works with the USB IR Tower on OS X since I only have the serial version)
##1) Building NQC from sources
For the lazy ones, I also provide a compiled version inside the /binaries folder.
(If you want to use it, copy the nqc executable inside your /usr/local/bin directory and go directly to step 2)
git clone https://github.com/Glitchbone/mindstorms-rcx-osx-tools.git cd mindstorms-rcx-osx-tools git submodule init git submodule update cd nqc sudo make install
If the build succeeds, the nqc executable will be installed globally.
##2) Uploading the official LEGO firmware
Find the name of your serial port:
This command will return a list of available devices. Look for something like "/dev/cu.PL2303-XXXX" and write it down.
I provide 3 LEGO firmware in this repository:
firm0309.lgo: RCX firmware version 3.09 - Provided with RCX 1.0 & 1.5
firm0328.lgo: RCX firmware version 3.28 - Provided with RCX 2.0
firm0332.lgo: RCX firmware version 3.32 - Latest firmware (Not sure if this one is compatible with NQC)
We will use firm0328.lgo for now.
Send it to your brick:
nqc -S/dev/cu.PL2303-XXXX -firmware firmwares/firm0328.lgo
This will take a few minutes.
##3) Send a test program to the RCX
I provide some example programs (from the NQC website) in the /examples folder
Upload the music.nqc program with this command:
nqc -S/dev/cu.PL2303-XXXX -TRCX2 -d -pgm 1 examples/music.nqc
When the transfer is complete, you can test it on your brick by selecting program slot 1 and running it
For more informations on the NQC utility, please refer to the official manual:
For the NQC syntax reference: