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A simple SDK to get your hands dirty with Nabaztag
C C++ Ruby JavaScript HTML Makefile Shell

Nabaztag Hack Kit

Everything you need to hack the Rabbit: a sinatra server including simple api framework to run custom bytecode on Nabaztag v1/v2. Includes original compiler sources for linux.

Getting Started

Compile & Run

The kit comes with violet sources and binaries to compile custom Nabaztag bytecode. On a linux machine those binaries are compiled on instalation of the gem. Following three binaries are available:


Merges multiple *.mtl files into one. Files are included like in C: #include "<relative path to file>". Output is temporary file .tmp.mtl.


Compiles a *.mtl file. It calls mtl_merge before, and fallbacks to remote compiler in case binary is not found and HOST is given.


Runs a *.mtl file. It calls mtl_merge before, and fallbacks to remote simulator in case binary is not found and HOST is given.

Understanding the Bytecode

The bytecode is written in a custom language by Sylvain Huet. It is referenced as Metal and files end with .mtl. Unfortunately documentation is very poor (and in french). Check directory ext/bytecode/ which contains a basic overview & documentaion as well as a list of (common) commands. A good reference is the original bytecode, included in the directory as well. Major parts got extracted into seperate files, found in lib/ directory and ready to be included in your code.


The kit includes a simple test framework to test custom bytecode. See test/bytecode/test.mtl. A typical test looks like this:

 let test "<test name>" -> t in
    assert_equalI 0   10 - (2* 5);

The framework offers assertions similar to Ruby Test::Unit style. Mind that the variable type has to be given explicit. Convention is:

  • I = interger
  • S = string
  • L = list
  • T = tab

Following assertions are available:

  • assert_equalI I I
  • assert_equalI S S
  • assert_nil I
  • assert_equalIL
  • assert_equalSL
  • assert_equalTL


The Server is the communication endpoint for the rabbit. Its two main purposes are:

  1. serving the bytecode on bootup
  2. receive and respond to HTTP requests in a defined format.

To start the server, run shortcut rake run or, as it's based on rack, rackup -p <portnumer>.


As example and for my own purposes I implemented a simple API to deal with RFID, LEDS, BUTTON and EARS easily.

Input Devices




Current Button has very basic functionality: a short press send HTTP Request of type Log to server, a long press foreces the bunny to restart.

Output Devices

Data for all output devices are stored in buffers. Each device has two: one for ontime, imediate playback, another for permanet loops.


Buffers 0 - 9, where 0-4 are used for onetime, and 5-9 for loop playback.


Buffers 10 - 13, where 10 & 11 are used for onetime, and 12 & 13 for loop playback.


The server part was heavily inspired by Trudy.rb, compiler code copied from OpenJabNab. Thanks!


A good introduction to understand Nabaztag Protocol:

Nabaztag Background

Read following posting for more background on Nabaztag Hacking (uses google translate:)


I'd like to hack the Violet mir:ror too. Some starting points:

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