AlexaDev Tuesday – New City Guide Alexa Skill Template

Publication Date: 12/26/16 – With the recent expansion of Alexa’s built-in vocabulary of slots and intents, lots of exciting new possibilities present themselves to Alexa skill developers. Case in point: the new City Guide Alexa skill template.



Amazon’s Jeff Blankenburg has the details:

We all have our favorite places. It may be your childhood hometown, an exotic place you visited, or even your college town. Regardless of why a city is your favorite, we all have our favorite spots to visit and want to tell others about, and that’s exactly what this new skill template helps you do.

This new template uses AWS Lambda, the Alexa Skills Kit (ASK), and the Alexa SDK for Node.js, in addition to the New York Times Search API for news. We provide the business logic, error handling, and help functions for your skill, you just need to provide the data and credentials.

For this example, we will create a skill for the city of Seattle, Washington. The user of this skill will be able to ask things like:

“Alexa, ask Seattle Guide what there is to do.”
“Alexa, ask Seattle Guide about the Space Needle.”
“Alexa, ask Seattle Guide for the news.”

You will be able to use your own city in the sample provided, so that users can learn to love your location as much as you do. This might also be a good opportunity to combine the knowledge from this template with our Calendar Reader sample, so that you can provide information about the events in your town, as well as the best places to visit.

If this sounds like something you’d be interested in trying, click here to read Jeff’s full post about the new City Guide template and tutorial, on the Amazon Developer Blog. If you’re ready to dig right in, click here to go directly to the How to Build a City Guide for Alexa tutorial page.