The intend command generates intent requests for your service as if they were coming from Alexa itself.

It works in a manner very similar to the Alexa simulator available via the Alexa developer console.

To start using it, you will need a local file that contains your Intent Schema and Sample Utterances.
By default, we have adopted the pattern used by the Alexa Skills Sample projects (see here).

That is, we look for the Interaction Model files inside a folder called speechAssets located off the source root.

You can specify an alternative location via options to the command-line.


To invoke the intend command, simply type:

$ bst intend <INTENT_NAME> [SlotName=SlotValue...]

For example:

$ bst intend HelloIntent SlotA=SlotValue

The intend command will return the full request and response of the interaction with your Skill service.

By default, the system will:

  • Use the Intent Model and Sample Utterances in the speechAssets folder under the current working directory
  • Use the service currently running via the bst proxy command

If no service is currently running via bst proxy, and HTTP endpoint can be specified with the --url option:

$ bst intend HelloIntent --url https://my.skill.com/skill/path

Speech Asset Format and Location

If your speech assets (Intent Model and Sample Utterances) are not stored under ./speechAssets, you can use an option to specify another location.

By default, we look for:

  • ./speechAssets/IntentSchema.json
  • ./speechAssets/SampleUtterances.txt


$ bst intend HelloIntent -i interactions/IntentSchema.json -s interactions/SampleUtterances.txt

The format of these files is the same as they are entered in the Alexa Skill configuration.

The Intent Schema is a JSON file. Samples utterances is a space-delimited text file.

An example of these files can be found here.