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Q&A Skill with publishing to Alexa

Objective:

This document will use the Q&A App with Publishing to Alexa feature of the VoiceWorx platform to create an Alexa skill app.

Steps:

The following shows the general steps/activities that will be carried out in setting up this integration. Note: It is advisable to use same email for signup across the 3 channels below. Step 1 -3 below are compulsory.
  1. 4.
    Ensure you Login With Amazon (LWA) https://developer.amazon.com/alexa/console/ask account is setup by your admin. If you are the account admin, you can follow this instruction to set it up.
  2. 5.
    Set up connection to the external web API
  3. 6.
    Create a custom app in Voiceworx.
  4. 7.
    Publish the app
  5. 8.
    Test the Alexa skill.
Create Q&A App in Voiceworx.ai
This section details how to add Questions and Answers on the VoiceWorx platform.
  1. 1.
    If you are not already logged in to the platform, Login here using the a valid and confirmed user name and password
  2. 2.
    Using the left navigation menu, click “Content” then select “Q&A” as shown in the image below. Then Click on “Q&A” to create new Q&A.
  1. 1.
    In the “Add New Question” area do the following:
Add Questions: “what is the most populated city in 2020”
Answer Text: “Tokyo”
Answer HTML: <b>Tokyo</b>
Answer SSML: <speak>Tokyo</speak>
Media Type (optional): Image
Media URL (optional): https://demovideo.s3.amazonaws.com/VoiceworxLogo.png
Click: Save
  1. 1.
    After saving, you will be redirected to the questions list view. Step 6-10 below are optional. They describe how uploaded QA can be tested within the platform.
  2. 2.
    Optional Step Test QA in-platform: QA’s can be tested in-platform without connecting to any external device. To perform an in-platform test, click “Test Q&A”.
  1. 1.
    Enter any one of the questions you added in the step above and click “Submit Question”.
  1. 1.
    Click “Exit” to close the Test Q&A.
  2. 2.
    Optional Step (Test QA in Chatbot window): Click “Launch Chatbot”.
  1. 1.
    Chatbot opens in a new tab. Enter any question from the entries and click “Send”.

Create Custom App in Voiceworx.ai

To be able to use the QA from an external device like Alexa or Lex, users need to create a custom app and publish the app to the corresponding platform. To create a custom app in the VoiceWorx platform, use the following steps:
  1. 1.
    Click “Custom App” on the left navigation menu and select “Manage Apps”.
  2. 2.
    Click “Create New Custom Skills” in the custom skill list page.
  1. 1.
    On “Add Custom App” do the following:
Name: Any name can be used for Custom App
Custom Skill Type: “Q and A”
Category: None
Click: Save

Publish Custom App to an external platform

  1. 1.
    To Publish a Custom Skill, click “Publish” then click “Add App Publishing”. Note: The publish tab is only visible if a skill is currently selected. If you can’t see the “PUBLISH” tab, repeat the following steps:
  1. 1.
    Uncheck the “Require Account Linking” and “Auto Publish”. They are not required to be checked. However, if checked, the user will be automatically directed to the “Publish to Alexa” step. If Alexa skill type is selected, an extra field “Skill Invocation” is shown. This is what a user will say in Alexa to invoke the skill.
Note skill invocation value “query assistant”. This will be required to invoke the skill.
Note: Skill invocation MUST be in small letters. No CAPITALIZATION is allowed. Ensure that the skill invocation is unique and different from any other you have used on any other skill.
  1. 1.
    Click “Save”. Note: If “Auto Publish” is checked, you will see “Publish” rather than “Save”.
  2. 2.
    Click “Publish to Alexa”.
  1. 1.
    In “Publish Skill To Amazon Alexa” do the following:
Select Skill: VoiceWorx QA Skill
Select Amazon Account (LWA): VoiceWorx QA Skill
Click: Publish to Alexa
Note: Your admin must have setup the LWA as described here. If you are not the admin for this account, please contact your admin to ensure LWA is setup. If you are the Admin, follow the instruction described here.
  1. 1.
    Click “Go to Alexa Skill” in Publish to Alexa Result page. NOTE: Ensure that all messages in the Result screen below are green (success) before clicking “GoTo Alexa Skill”.
  1. 1.
    The Alexa developer console page will be opened. Note: Leave the Alexa developer console open as you will test the skill from its test page once you are done with the next section below.
  2. 2.
    On Alexa developer console page, ensure the Full Build Successful notification is displayed before going to the next steps below. Note: This may take a few seconds. A green box will appear in the lower right corner and will confirm. A skill that is not successfully built CANNOT be enabled using the steps below. When successfully built the underlined dots in the image stop showing on page.

Enable the published skill for use in your profile.

  1. 1.
    Login here using your verified Amazon account details.
  1. 1.
    If this is the first user log in, “Terms of Use” and “Setup” steps will need to be completed. If not, go to step 27 below.
  2. 2.
    Click “Continue” in the Alexa welcome page.
  1. 1.
    To skip the device Setup page in your computer, download the Alexa App to your mobile phone and login to the same account and fill your personal details to the app and then you could see the skip option in the webpage.
  1. 1.
    Click “Ok” in the pop-up box.
  1. 1.
    Click “Skills” on left navigation menu.
  1. 1.
    Click “Your Skills” in top right corner.
  2. 2.
    Click “All Skills” in top right corner.
  3. 3.
    Select “Skill” published in the steps above. Note: Skill list in image below will not correspond to your list.
  4. 4.
    Click “Enable”.

Test Skill in Alexa

  1. 1.
    To test skill in Alexa developer console, go back to the page you were advised to leave open in Step 21 or login to the developer console here.
  2. 2.
    Select the skill you enabled in the last section. Note: testing skills that were not enabled in Amazon Alexa skills page will result in errors.
  3. 3.
    Click “Invocation” menu and copy “Skill Invocation” text. This should be the same text you typed into “Skill Invocation” control in the Publishing page of the VoiceWorx platform. Check step 16 for further information.
  4. 4.
    Click “Test”.
  5. 5.
    Click “Allow” to access your microphone.
  6. 6.
    Change skill testing option from “Off” to “Development” for the Enabled skill to test. Note: It take a few minutes for Alexa developer console to build the skill. Therefore, if changing to Development does not work, wait a few minutes and try again.
  7. 7.
    Invoke the skill by pasting the skill invocation in the text box highlighted below and click enter. You can hold the mic icon and speak into your device microphone also. Note: If skill is correctly set up a welcome message that corresponds to the welcome message you added in the skill publishing step (Step 16) should be displayed.
Type in any question you set up in the Q & A content in VoiceWorx into the same text box above and click enter. You can click here to see the questions you have previously set up.
Congratulations! You have successfully completed building Q & A Custom App and publishing to Alexa.
Note: Keywords “App” and “Skill” are used interchangably.
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Objective:
Steps:
Create Custom App in Voiceworx.ai
Publish Custom App to an external platform
Enable the published skill for use in your profile.
Test Skill in Alexa