With the Greeter skill you learned about the Alexa skill architecture and interface configuration. Now we’ll expand on what we learned with the Greeter skill by building a more feature rich skill called Airport Info. Airport Info will make requests to the Federal Aviation Administration’s JSON backed web service, and inform users if there is any delay at an airport that they specify. We will see several new features of the skill interaction model that let us build more sophisticated skills. The Airport Info skill will also show how local testing against an intent and slot can be accomplished using the alexa-app-server module. The skill will also show common patterns for dealing with third-party JSON Web APIs to retrieve data in response to a user request. This module covers:
In our last post on building Alexa skills, we implemented a model that knows how to talk to the FAA. Now we’ll see how to hook it up to a new Alexa skill. We’ll be using alexa-app as a framework to build our skill, and alexa-app-server will allow us to test interacting with the skill locally. We will be using these libraries because they grant a path to supporting a local development and testing workflow with an Alexa skill, which allows us to rapidly test and develop.