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We’re excited to announce Addteq's Amazon Echo API Integration has received the 2016 API Award for the category: Internet of Things API's. The 2016 API Awards is the industry’s largest award event at the API World 2016 Conference & Expo, the world’s largest API conference & expo with 3,000 attendees. Every year hundreds of nominations are received, and the API World advisory board selected our product based on three criteria: Reputation in the API Industry, Recent Media Coverage, and Innovativeness of the API initiatives.

"The Amazon Echo API Integration is a great example of how more and more of the tech industry is realizing that APIs are not just how we integrate tools and apps, APIs are the new way of doing business and building new revolutionary technologies.” Said Geoff Domoracki, founder of API World.

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What is the Amazon Echo API Integration Anyway?

Amazon's Echo is a hands-free speaker you control with your voice. Amazon Echo connects to the Alexa Voice Service to play music, provide information, news, sports or any custom user defined functionalities. Alexa provides a set of built-in capabilities, referred to as "skills". For example, Alexa’s abilities include playing music from multiple providers, answering questions, providing weather forecasts, and querying Wikipedia.The Alexa Skills Kit allows you to teach Alexa "new skills". We wrote custom skills that will query the JIRA server using the REST API for information regarding a particular issue. The response is formatted so that Alexa can read the information to the user.

By using Docker, Addteq, Atlassian and Amazon products, the Addteq team members were able to connect Amazon's Echo to an active JIRA instance in order to query for Issue information. The team connected the Echo to their Docker clusters. They had four Docker instances running on Codefactori (Codefactori is Addteq's platform as a service for Atlassian tools) to increase/decrease the size of the cluster. By doing this, Addteq was able to achieve Codefactori automation. 

 

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Addteq's Amazon Echo API Integration was given an award at the API World 2016 Award Ceremony.

Check Out the Integration In Action

How does it work?

User says "Alexa" to wake up the Echo. Then says, "Asks Codefactori" to invoke our custom skill. Then the user mentions the JIRA issue to query for status, summary, comments, etc.

  • Alexa, Ask codefactori, Whats is the status of DEMO-12 ?
  • Alexa, Ask codefactori, Whats is the last comment on DEMO-64 ?

 

The functionality is not limited to only query for JIRA issues. We can also extend it to create, transition and assign issues. We are planning to make Echo part of our daily standup meetings to make our calls even more effective!

Addteq also wanted to experiment with the integration between Echo and Codefactori to automate the creation, monitoring, and destruction of nodes within a cluster. We created a Docker cluster - which can have a minimum of 1 node and a maximum of 4 nodes. The idea was to make the cluster elastic so that it could operate based on the received server load. When the node drops/fails, the monitoring system automatically created a JIRA issue for support with the priority based on the number of nodes affected. We created a skill for Alexa that could query a python based REST endpoint, retrieve the status, add, remove, and count of nodes.

The interaction is similar to the interaction with JIRA:

  • Alexa, Ask codefactori, Whats is the status of Docker Cluster ?
  • Alexa, Ask codefactori, Add a node to Docker Cluster ? 

Whatever Alexa responds back with, the JIRA issue associated with affected nodes can count the number of nodes, list the docker container ID's, and notify when you add a node. 

Now the fun begins! Using a list of preset commands, simply ask Alexa the command in which you want to perform. For example, by using the command associated with "Add node to Docker Cluster", Alexa will go ahead and add the node. With a different command, "Remove node from Docker Cluster" she can also drop a node. 

Some of Amazon Echo's Actions: 

  • Add node to Docker Cluster
  • Remove node from Docker Cluster
  • Status of Docker Cluster
  • Number of nodes in Docker Cluster
  • Status of a JIRA issue
  • Last comment on a JIRA issue

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Stay tuned for next week's blog to see what we are doing next with Amazon Echo!