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Skill Architecture and Interface Configuration

Training Module #1 by Big Nerd Ranch

In this module, we’re going to introduce the Alexa Skills Kit and teach you how to create skills, which are voice driven applications for Alexa. We will build and deploy a basic skill. This skill will be called the Greeter skill, and will say hello to users when they invoke the skill using the words that we specify. We'll see an overview of the skill interface and skill service components that comprise a basic skill, and how to configure them to create a working skill. We'll see how to build and then deploy a skill to Amazon Web Services. Our skill will respond to a user’s words with a greeting on any Amazon Echo or Alexa-enabled device. Finally, we'll see how to test the behavior of our skill once deployed. This module covers:

  • Developing Locally with Alexa-app server and Alexa-app NPM Modules
  • Generating Utterances with the Alexa app Module
  • Creating and Registering Custom Slot Types
  • Web service Interaction and Asynchronous Requests
  • Asking vs Telling Interactions
  • Re-prompting
  • Displaying Data on Cards

Blog: Setting Up Your Local Environment

If you want to build Alexa skills, where should you start? You could begin with building one of the sample skills like the color picker or the trivia game. But when you’ve already tackled “Hello, World,” you’re ready to dive in. Not quite yet. First, let’s set up a local development environment. Why should you use a local development environment over testing on a live server? There are many benefits. Chief among them are the fact that you gain access to the debugger and the stack trace, and you can quickly test changes without uploading files to a remote server, cutting down your iteration time.

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