question

TheIncredibleMW avatar image
TheIncredibleMW asked

Alexa English UK recognising less and less

Coincidently, my issues started once the NodeJS ask 2 was released on github (5 days ago).

It seems that the Alexa no longer recognises works such as "mortgage" and "fixed rate" as easy as it used to. As well as this, it seems to be matching seemingly random handlers to things even though they are clearly defined utterances to match...

Some sample "issues":

(Me) Ask XXX what is a fixed rate mortgage

(Alexa) Chooses wrong intent, interprets as: "ask XXX what is fixed rate my ktichen"

(Me) Ask XXX what is a fixed rate mortgage
(Alexa) "alexa ask XXX what is a six street mortgage"

(Me) Ask XXX what is the status of my mortgage

(Alexa) "ask xxx the status of my motivation"

alexa skills kitvoice-user interfacenode_js
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1 Answer

KirkC@Amazon avatar image
KirkC@Amazon answered

Hi. Before we get started, the issues you described wouldn't have to do with the new version of the Node.js ASK SDK, or anything on the skill's back-end at all. These issues have to do with the skill's voice interface, or "front-end."

Next, I enabled your skill and I was indeed able to reproduce some of the behavior you described. For example:

Me: Alexa, ask <invocation name> what is a fixed rate mortgage.

Out of 5 attempts, I received 1 successful response from the skill. However, what I found was that the specific words being misheard were:

  • "a fixed" being heard as "affixed"
  • "rate" being heard as "read"


I then looked at the skill's sample utterances and slot values. What I found was that the slot value that this intent points to does not have "fixed rate." What I would recommend then is adding "fixed rate" to the appropriate custom slot, saving the interaction model, and then be sure to also click the "Build" button.

I'm unsure if you've made any other changes to the skill's interaction model since posting but in all my attempts, Alexa never misunderstood the word "mortgage." It looks like you've included "mortgage" as part of the sample utterance itself, which should make that word very reliable and also means it wouldn't be passed as a slot value to your back-end. If that was a recent addition, it appears to have worked for me.

1 comment
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Great analysis Kirk

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