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Physics is a physical world simulator and playground -- you can add squares, circles, triangles, or draw your own shapes, and see them come to life with forces (think gravity, Newton!), friction (scrrrrape), and inertia (ahh, slow down!).


Ideas to try

  • Sorting different sized balls in to two buckets, large and small (with no jams).
  • A cyclic mechanism for lifting balls from the bottom of the screen to the top, again and again.
  • Try dropping 2 different mass objects at the same time.
  • Experiment with pendulums of different lengths and masses.
  • Ping pong, can you make a device that hits a ball back and forth across the screen?
  • Try building a mechanical binary clock.
  • Convert rotation into parallel motion using pistons.
  • Experiment with touching one motorised circle against one pinned circle of various sizes.
  • Try building a rag-doll puppet and make it dance in a convincing way.
  • Use just links and circles to make a structurally sound Eiffel Tower.
  • Try building a ratchet mechanism.
  • Try building an analogue clock face where the min hand goes around 60 times for each hour.


Boxes - Rectangles of any dimension

Use: click (top-left corner) drag + release (bottom left corner) -- like dragging a selection box in a photo editor

Circles - Circles of any radius

click (center) drag + release (outer edge)

Triangles - Triangles (equilateral) of any size and initial rotation

Use: click (center of base) drag + release (tip)

Polygons - As many sides as you would like. Draw your own N-gon.

Use: Click for each point, to end: right click, or left click in the circle around the original point


Use: Click and hold to draw any shape you'd like!

Grab - Drag existing objects around with the mouse Joint

Click on any object, drag to another object + release to create a distance joint

Erase - Click on an object to erase it, or draw a line of destruction--erasing everything in its path!



There are quite a few code layers to contend with. A regular Python Activity acts as a Sugar wrapper to Physics which is written using OLPCGames which itself wraps Pygame, Physics then uses Elements as a wrapper for Box2D.

Release Notes


  • Migrated to Sugar Labs
  • Motor toolbar button added
  • Pin toolbar button added
  • Toolbar reworked for displaying state and keyboard accelerators
  • Stop/play toolbar button added
  • Prevented very small freehand and polygon shapes to prevent Box2d crashes


  • Original created by Brian Jordan, Alex Levenson, Chris Hager