Finally got a new cloud instance for the Oracle Digital Assistant Cloud Service, coming with the new version 18.4 and, by the looks of it, much has changed…
From bots to skills and digital assistants
In the landing page it is immediately visible the term ‘bots’ is no longer used. This is also in line with the idea of digital assistants, being multi purpose instead of a single use-case chatbot. The term bot from the previous version is renamed to ‘skill’ and new development options are available for combining multiple skills in a digital assistant, configure channels for your assistant to interact with users and a ‘Store’ feature, for specific functionality. Not clear what this store feature will hold and if it will be possible for us, bot developers, to publish reusable skills in the store, like a marketplace.
Skills are the basics for a digital assistant
Functionality which in the previous version was all available for a bot, is now present under ‘skill’. Here you can define the Intents, Entities, a Dialog Flow and Functions etc which will help your assistant to perform a specific use-case aka skill , like the new example Wine Skill for ordering Wine.
These skills can be combined in a multi purpose Digital Assistant together with some additional intents for this assistant, like greeting, help, exit etc. This is a good way to structure and reuse specific skills and dialog flows.
However a digital assistant does not have it’s own dialog flow. in stead these can be customized in the ‘settings > configurations’ panel where you can set parameters and labels (conversation parameters). The last i don’t think will work very well for a multilingual assistant, since the lack of resource bundles for this configuration.
Also what i noticed is they incorporated a form of version control for skills, allowing for multiple version development and a main version to be published and used in the assistants. Read the complete article here.
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