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over 1 year ago

Building Alexa Skills “For Good”

What exactly is a “tech for good” skill? It’s a skill that has a positive impact on the planet or on local communities and that solves a real customer problem. These should be skills that customers keep coming back to because they continue to provide ongoing value. Here are a few ideas of the types of skills we are thinking of in each of our content bonus prize categories:

  • Sustainable transportation: A skill that helps you plan your route using public transit, or that tells you the location of the nearest bike-share bike or electric vehicle charging station, or a skill that introduces you to local carpooling resources would all have a positive impact on the environment while helping customers.
  • Circular economy: A skill that helps customers understand what can/cannot be recycled in their area, or that identifies the nearest drop-off point and operating hours for a nonprofit that accepts donations of household goods, or a skill that teaches you how to maintain and extend the useful life of products or gear that you own would all count.
  • Resource efficiency: A skill that helps you improve your energy efficiency at home or that connects with your utility data to help you track and improve your energy or water consumption would all have a positive impact on the environment and customers.
  • STEM Education: A skill that helps students and parents find local extracurricular STEM learning opportunities (camps, afterschool programs, etc.) or that helps facilitate STEM learning, like an interactive game to broaden knowledge of STEM topics or careers.
  • Disaster relief: A skill that notifies a customer of a weather service watch, alert, or advisories impacting the area where the customer lives, or a skill that helps a customer learn about the ways to help with a disaster – from donating cash or products to volunteering.   

Check out the resources page to see datasets and additional information for each bonus category. For more inspiration, check out the nonprofits we are featuring to learn more about the types of problems they are trying to solve. You have 19 days left to submit your skill to the Alexa Skills Challenge: Tech for good. Your submission is due by September 17th at 5pm ET (Find out what time that is in your city), and you have until October 1st to get your skill certified. Good luck!

Questions?

If you have any questions about the hackathon, please post on the discussion forum.