Amazon introduced Alexa Skill Blueprints, tools to add jokes, houseguest instructions, or other custom content to the voice-activated software without learning how to code. Called Alexa Blueprints, the guides let users write answers to custom questions - say, "what's the best city in the world?" - or set up trivia and games.
Effectively, the new functionality allows anyone to create their own Alexa skill. There is no coding knowledge required, because Amazon's offering "Blueprint templates" that make it easy for you to make a Skill within minutes.
We think it's the "Storyteller" class of Blueprints that has the most potential.
Visit the Alexa Skill Blueprints website (blueprints.amazon.com), then sign in to your Amazon account hooked up to your Alexa devices, and browse and select a Skill Blueprint template that you like.
You can even program Alexa's intro to the game, sound effects, and more. Amazon hasn't set a limit on how many skills can be created by users, but it has set a limit on where the feature is available as it's now only live for users in the USA with no word on when it will expand to other regions.
The Echo Spot will be available in-store and shipped out to customers on 26 April, with pre-orders starting today on Amazon Australia for $199. Or, just as you ask Alexa to turn off the lights, now she can show your security camera feed. The Echo Spot is diminutive in size, but not in power.
If you named your custom skill, "John's Birthday", you can just say, "Alexa, open John's Birthday skill".
When you're ready to build, simply click the "Make Your Own" button toward the top of the blueprint page.
After you've created the custom skill, it will be available in the Skills You've Made webpage on the Blueprints site. While the new addition of Alexa Skill Blueprints does open up to some jovial fun, it is also open to abuse with people setting up the voice assistant to offer incorrect responses in households.
The experience page dictates how the user will interact with the skill, and how Alexa will respond. You'll also be able to enable, disable and delete your skills.
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