Book Image

Hands-On Chatbot Development with Alexa Skills and Amazon Lex

By : Sam Williams
Book Image

Hands-On Chatbot Development with Alexa Skills and Amazon Lex

By: Sam Williams

Overview of this book

Have you ever wondered how Alexa apps are made, how voice-enabled technologies work, or how chatbots function? And why tech giants such as Amazon and Google are investing in voice technologies? A better question is: why should I start developing on these platforms? Hands-On Chatbot Development with Alexa Skills and Amazon Lex covers all features of the Alexa Skills kit with real-world examples that help you develop skills to integrate Echo and chatbots into Facebook, Slack, and Twilio with the Amazon Lex platform. The book starts with teaching you how to set up your local environment and AWS CLI so that you can automate the process of uploading AWS Lambda from your local machine. You will then learn to develop Alexa Skills and Lex chatbots using Lambda functions to control functionality. Once you’ve come to grips with this, you will learn to create increasingly complex chatbots, integrate Amazon S3, and change the way Alexa talks to the user. In the concluding chapters, we shift our focus to Amazon Lex and messaging chatbots. We will explore Alexa, learn about DynamoDB databases, and add cards to user conversations. By the end of this book, you will have explored a full set of technologies that will enable you to create your own voice and messaging chatbots using Amazon.
Table of Contents (13 chapters)


Having built a chatbot, you want users to be able to find it and use it. A lot of your users will already have Facebook or Slack, and they'll definitely have a mobile number. Being able to use our chatbots through these existing communication methods makes it a lot easier and more natural for our users.

To allow chatbots onto their systems, Facebook, Slack, and Twilio have created integration methods. This allows messages that are sent through each of those platforms to reach our chatbot, making our chatbot appear to be part of the system.

Amazon Lex makes it very easy for us to integrate with Facebook, Slack, Twilio, and Kik, hiding a lot of complex data formatting behind the scenes. To access the integrations that Lex has, click on the Channels tab, and you'll have the choice to configure Facebook, Kik, Slack, or Twilio SMS.