Virtual TJBot

Virtual TJBot

Introduce programming, cognitive technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) to students by helping them bring their own Virtual TJBot Robot to life!

Activity Duration

1 Hour

Preparation Time

1 – 2 Hours

Estimated Cost of Materials

no cost

Audience Age

11 – 19


Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning


Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese, Spanish, Swedish, Portuguese


This Activity Kit introduces students to cognitive technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) by helping them connect to a virtual TJBot robot. This virtual robot can be configured to use any available Watson™ cloud service such as Watson Assistant (chatbot), Speech to Text and Text to Speech. In addition to using existing programming recipes, students can unleash their creativity and create new recipes to bring the Virtual TJBot to life using Watson™ services. The Virtual TJBot uses the iPad to connect to Watson services and emulates the physical TJBot's behavior.

There is also a physical version of this Virtual TJBot Activity Kit where students create a physical robot out of cardboard and a Raspberry Pi. Please see additional information on the physical TJBot.

IBMers, be sure to log your volunteer time in the IBM Volunteering & Giving Portal, so you can qualify for IBM Volunteer Grants and double your impact. Record your hours here.

This activity kit will require the following resources:

  • An IBM Cloud account for the instructor
  • iPads for students – One iPad per 3–4 students works well
  • The room must have PowerPoint presentation capabilities


  1. Review the TJBot Activity Kit Start Guide

  2. Learn about the origins of the Virtual TJBot and read some background to make getting started and facilitating the activity easy

  3. Explore the Virtual TJBot Swift Playground on Github

IBM Cloud Account Information for Volunteers

IBM employees are encouraged to use their internal IBM Cloud accounts, which include all Lite services at no charge. IBM volunteers can also register for a Lite account following the link below. Questions can also be posted on the IBM Volunteers Slack channel.

Both IBM volunteers and non-IBM volunteers who require Cloud access beyond a Lite account are encouraged to request access to the IBM Citizenship Cloud by sending an email to with the following subject line “Citizenship Cloud Access.” In the body of the email, please outline what cloud resources you need and which Activity Kit will be used. Students will get appropriate access directly from their teachers. Volunteers who only require a Lite account do not need to ask for access to the IBM Citizenship Cloud.