I wanted something for children to play with on Amazon echo devices, both educational and fun, but also customizable by the user, or at least by me, after the skill has been published. I imagined helping my kids with homework or study for the exam with Alexa. This skill can make studying/learning new things fun and interactive. The Alexa Skill challenge for kids couldn't have come in a better time.

What it does

This skill reads from a database and produces a list of trivia questions to ask the user. I have a web interface where I can update the list of questions and anything Alexa uses dynamically. At the moment, all of the questions are geared toward kids under 13.

How I built it

I used Alexa Skill plugin for Visual Studio and wrote the whole thing in .Net Core C#. The database and its web interface was created in .Net Core as well using ASP.NET MVC and Entity Framework.

Challenges I ran into

I started down the usual path of node.js to write this skill, and I learned a lot on programming with node. But at the end, given my background in .Net and the short time I had to work with, I scratched the whole thing and rewrote it in .Net Core 1.0.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

I did this project over the weekend, and I think I got a lot done. I have a working product at the end that I showed to my friend's family and we all had a good time.

What I learned

I learned to look around first for anything I wanted to do, because most of the time someone else has already done it and I could save myself a lot of time. I also learned a lot about node.js, its asynchronous callbacks, and its scalability.

What's next for Five Question Kid Trivia

I will maintain the skill and keep asking questions to the database to make the skill fun to play. Writing Alexa skills in .Net is still new, so I will revisit it to make the skill better.

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