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Shoebot is a Python graphics robot: It takes a Python script as input, which describes a drawing process, and outputs a graphic in a common open standard format (SVG, PDF, PostScript, or PNG). It works through simple text files, and scripts can describe their own GUIs for controlling variables interactively. It can also be used as a Python module, a plugin for Python-scriptable tools such as Inkscape, and run from the command line.

Shoebot is a port/rewrite of Nodebox 1. It was also inspired by DrawBot and Shoes. Thus, "Shoebot".

Build Status


You can find the current docs at ReadTheDocs.

The Nodebox tutorials are an excellent intro to the language and its core concepts. Shoebot is a rewrite of Nodebox 1, so the original Nodebox documentation is required reading.

The Shoebot documentation has quite a lot more information on what you can do with Shoebot. Take a look at the wiki for a set of hacks and advanced uses such as:

  • import Shoebot as a Python module
  • use the included socketserver to have other programs control a Shoebot script
  • generate images via CGI scripts

Getting help

Installation can sometimes be tricky, to help us work out whats up paste the output of the following commands into an issue on github

python diagnose
python test

This will help us diagnose common issues more quickly.



Copyright © 2007-2018 The Shoebot authors (Stuart Axon, Dave Crossland, Francesco Fantoni, Ricardo Lafuente, Sebastian Oliva) Originally developed by Ricardo Lafuente with the support of the Piet Zwart Institute, Rotterdam.

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify
it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as
published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the
License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program.  If not, see <>.