Evaluating Microsoft Composer for Bot Framework

Original article can be found here (source): Artificial Intelligence on Medium

In the example above the echo bot is selected from Examples, loaded and run within the Bot Framework Emulator.

There is a very detailed tutorial to build a weather bot with API integration included.

The composer allows for Natural Language Generation. In essence it is just concatenating the dialog segments presented to the user with dynamic content embedded.

Graphic components can be incorporated for mediums allowing richer user experiences in terms of graphics; like web and app.

Responding With Cards

Adding LUIS

Example project for LUIS are available and excellent tutorials can help you in customizing your project.

The flow you designed can be deployed from bot composer directly into your LUIS account in the cloud.

Some of the functionality included:

Entities, Definition, Machine learned, Prebuilt entity, List entity, Composite entity, Regex entity, Roles, Patterns, Phrase lists features etc.

# BookFlight
- book flight from {city:fromCity} to {city:toCity}
- [can you] get me a flight from {city:fromCity} to {city:toCity}
- get me a flight to {city:toCity}
- I need to fly from {city:fromCity}

$city:Seattle=
- Seattle
- Tacoma
- SeaTac
- SEA

$city:Portland=
- Portland
- PDX

Multiple roles for an entity can be defined, as seen above.

Composer allows you to leverage the power of LUIS, which I found astonishing.

Testing

As stated above, the Bot Framework Emulator allows for seamless transition between the composer and the emulator.

Landing Page: Bot Framework Emulator

The sequence of events required to get your bot out of the door is also defined along a line of activity.

The Emulator can be cloned or Downloaded from GitHub.

It is described as a desktop application that allows bot developers to test and debug bots built using the Bot Framework SDK. You can use the Bot Framework Emulator to test bots running either locally on your machine or connect to bots running remotely through a tunnel.

Positive Elements

  • Graphic Design & Development Presence for Microsoft Bots
  • Seamless Integration with LUIS
  • Leveraging Intents and Entities with Contextual Entities & All Advanced Entity types
  • Seamless Deployment to Azure Resources & Azure Bot Environment
  • Built-In Graphic Elements
  • Seamless Testing in Microsoft Bot Simulator
  • Growth Within the Microsoft Environment
  • Migration Within the Microsoft Environment

Other Considerations

  • Structure Considerations Due To Merging of Dialogs, Triggers, Intents & Entities
  • Framework Maturity Concerns
  • Unknown Scaling Impediments
  • Technical Design Considerations for New Ways of Working

Conclusion

At the very least composer is a good way for an aspiring chatbot developer to get started in an easy way with no cost impediments.

Microsoft has a very powerful NLU API creator in LUIS with the best entity functionality by far; compared to other commercial cloud offerings.

Added to this, is the recently launched Power Virtual Agents. And, add to the mix Bot Framework, the emulator and now composer.

Microsoft has a multi-pronged approached and is addressing various sectors simultaneously with this approach.