Inspiration

While working in an NGO, I realised how important children are to our society and how crucial it is to nurture good habits into them and set them on the right path. Through this Alexa skill we want to reach out to children in a prodigious way. After all, good child behaviour isn't magic. It's a skill, just like anything else.

What it does

Using Daily Habits, children can learn social skills, good habits and how you should behave in various daily situations. We used a completely new approach to teach good habits and behaviour to children. The app uses two way feedback based conversational Q&A to teach kids various behavioural patterns. Rather than brutely teaching them what should be done, we make them realise how to behave in various practical scenarios by explaining with reasoning what is the right or wrong thing to do. This is essential for children.

How I built it

After deciding on the core concept, I started off with gathering the content through various material available online, offline and also through the NGO I am working with. Once I was confident that enough content was available, I started off with the Alexa Skill development. Although this is my first time developing a Alexa skill, being well experienced in general with programming and especially python helped a lot. I was fortunate enough to have a Alexa device with me to help during the development and testing post finish. The tools that became recently available for Alexa skill development were also of great help, especially the testing simulator (beta).

Challenges I ran into

Content gathering was the first challenge I ran into. Getting quality content and also delivering it in way I wanted it to took some time to get to the bottom of. After that during the skill development, i faced some issues with minor bugs present in the Alexa Interaction Model Builder (Beta). Although the documentation was quite extensive, I felt like there was a lack of community support for any new issues faced.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

I volunteer for Bhumi (NGO) which provides supplementary teaching to school children studying in Community and Government Schools. I dedicate some time every weekend to teach kids and I felt exuberant after seeing how they interacted with the Alexa skill I developed. They are very happy to learn through such a medium and I am proud of that.

What I learned

• I learned how much voice based User Experience will play a crucial role in the near future. • I learned how to teach children in a better way. • I learned how to develop Alexa Skills using the rich speech effects provided by SSML ( Speech Synthesis Markup Language ).

What's next for Daily Habits

We want to gather more content and improve the quality of the content further, because that is essential in the long run. Once we receive some feedback from the Alexa Platform users, we are planning to expand to Android and iOS platforms with the same concept. With mobile platforms we have more flexibility of visual display and providing very rich user experience.

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