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An XY-Plotter is a simple CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machine which connects to a computer via an Arduino. Two stepper motors control the motion of a pen very precisely so that it can draw pictures. To program the XY-Plotter, you first draw a design on graph paper, then label the (x,y) coordinates of each corner point, and finally type the G-Code into any text editor. You can test your code using our virtual online Plotter. If you have access to an actual XY-Plotter, you can then run the program and see it draw your picture.


Preparation Time

5 minutes

Activity Time

60 minutes to introduce the activity. The full unit can last 4 to 10 class sessions.




Deepu Sengupta programmed the XY-Plotter Simulator


Amanda Katharine Serenevy
Riverbend Community Math Center
(574) 339-9111
This work placed into the public domain by the Riverbend Community Math Center.