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📰 News and Stories

Story Shake-up: Storyline Shuts Down Code-Free Alexa Skill Builder to Focus on Invocable Service for Voice Designers: Vasili Shynkarenka, CEO of Storyline, announced in an email to 3,000 users that it would soon discontinue its code-free Alexa skill building and publishing tool. Users have until the end of the year to make edits to their Alexa skills built in Storyline and after that, the company will continue to host the skills but no more edits will be possible. If current users wish to be able to maintain their skills, they must port them to another platform before year-end.

How To Export Your Skills from Storyline and Keep Them Alive for Free In 2019?: We see many Storyline users ask themselves what should they do with their skills now? The majority of these users are not professional UX designers. Nevertheless, some of them created amazing Alexa skills with thousands of users! We at BotTalk firmly believe that the voice community as a whole should help Storyline users keep their Skills alive. That is why we decided to welcome Storyline users to our platform! We’re offering Storyline users an export of their existing Skills to BotTalk. The logic (the decision tree) of your skill will be exported.

Communicate around the house with the Google Assistant: From dinner bells to shouting, attempting to gather the family from around the house is nothing new. And now, your Google Assistant is getting in on the game. Starting today, you can broadcast your voice from your Assistant on your phone or voice-activated speaker, like Google Home. So when you need to round up the family in the morning, just say “Ok Google, broadcast it’s time for school!” and your message will broadcast to all Assistant enabled speakers in your home.

New Report: Over 1 Billion Devices Provide Voice Assistant Access Today and Highest Usage is on Smartphones: Over one billion devices now provide voice assistant access worldwide and the highest monthly usage in the U.S. is on smartphones, in cars, and on smart speakers, in that order. These are a few of the findings in the newly published Voice Assistant Consumer Adoption Report 2018 which is the result of a collaboration between Voicebot, PullString and RAIN Agency. Oren Jacob, CEO and co-founder of PullString commented:

Becoming Alexa Developer from Visual Designer in just 4 hours!: This workshop was a side event for the beyond tellerrand conference in Berlin. On the World Usability Day (November 8th, 2018) a Multimodal Conversation Design Workshop took place at Edenspiekermann Berlin office.The goal of the workshop was to give UX Designers the basic knowledge about the Voice design, the process and the differences from the GUI design workflow and user experience and the ability to create real Voice User Apps for Amazon Alexa using the BotTalk platform.

📓 Tutorials and Opinions

How to Get Started with the Alexa Presentation Language to Build Multimodal Alexa Skills: The Alexa Presentation Language (APL) is Amazon’s new voice-first design language you can use to create rich, interactive displays for Alexa skills and tailor the experience for tens of millions of Alexa-enabled devices. Using APL, you can easily build customized, robust displays that coincide with your personal brand and the context of your voice experience.

Why Writing a Script Is the Best Way to Design for Conversation:
Conversational design hinges on customers being able to easily interact with your skill to get information in a way that makes sense for them. Doing this right requires you to think about the many ways a customer could interact with your skill and then identify the way to facilitate the best interaction possible. You might be thinking that flowcharting sounds like a more comprehensive way to design for conversation, but that's actually not the case.

📆 Upcoming Events

5. Hamburg Voice Interface Meetup (Hamburg, November 28)