Building IoT Bots With CloudHawk and Google Home

I have been programming since I was a senior at Coronado High way back in 1975.  Yes, I am that old.  While today’s projects are light years beyond the simple things I once wrote in BASIC and Fortran, the thrill of creating something amazing out of a bunch of number and letters is still just as powerful.

For the past several months, I have been immersed in artificial intelligence and developing bots.  Specifically, I have been writing bots that connect users with the other technologies I love to play with – like IoT and Teams applications.  You may have already read about what I did with IBM Watson and WebEx Teams.  Since then, I’ve built similar bots for Avaya Spaces and Slack.

A couple weeks ago I fell in love with Google Home and threw myself head first into understanding DialogFlow and how it can be used to create fun, and ultimately powerful, voice bots.

Without going into all the gory development details (if there is enough interest I will write about that in a future article), I would like to introduce you to my Google Home IoT bot.

CloudHawk

CloudHawk is a cloud-based IoT platform that allows transportation companies to track their fleet of trucks as they carry shipments around the world.  Using the CloudHawk web portal, a company can visually see where their trucks are, how fast they are moving, and gather important telemetry information about a truck’s cargo.

For my Google Home bot, I created a web service that sits between DialogFlow and the many CloudHawk Restful APIs.  This allowed me to speak to those APIs as if I was talking to an actual human being.  Knowing Google Home, I expected to be pleased with the natural language processing functionality it provided my bot, but I ended up being absolutely astonished.  As you will hear and see in my video, I speak to my bot as if I was talking to a human being.

I hope you are as amazed as I am by this very simple demonstration.  You can be certain that I will add even more features and functionality over the next several days.  This is way too cool to stop now.

And just to be clear, this is real data from live sensors.  No smoke and mirrors for me, Baby!

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