Inspiration

I wanted to have an easy way to remember Minecraft recipes and know what ingredients were needed for them. It also had to be able to support new recipes when Minecraft was updated with new ones.

What it does

Craft Helper is an unofficial Minecraft assistant that helps you find information without having to browse or search the web for it. You can ask it for information about several topics which it will provide to a user when they open the skill or ask for help from it.

How I built it

I originally just had all the recipe files loaded into the skill itself, but when it became more complex I built a second lambda. This allowed it to generate information files to cross reference items for uses in recipes so you can find out what an item is used for.

Challenges I ran into

When I needed the skill to tell me uses for an item I had to build a dedicated lambda that I could call that would connect to a Google spreadsheet to create massive data files for items, entities, and things. This creates a quick lookup for all information related to one of those topics.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

The files generated for this skill hold all the information needed for the skill to work. This allows a self contained ecosystem where it doesn't need to connect to a DB or external source. This keeps responses very fast even when generating large text speech with a lot of info.

What I learned

I learned pretty quickly that having individual recipe files wasn't going to work to find all the uses an item could have. It also had to look up every result in each recipe file to make sure it included all recipes for a particular item. This was slow and cumbersome which took a lot of time to scan for an item.

What's next for Craft Helper

Every few weeks more data is added and missing information is filled in. This is a never ending process which will shape Craft Helper into a more powerful and helpful skill.

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