Deploy a Cisco Spark Bot

Objectives

As introduced earlier, Cisco Spark Bots are applications that invoke the Cisco Spark API under a Bot account identity.

In this lab, you will learn to run your own Cisco Spark Bot by taking several steps:

  • create a Bot account,
  • deploy a nodejs code sample from Cloud9 development environment,
  • and finally register two Webhooks to have your bot receive events as they happen in Cisco Spark rooms.

Pre-requisites

In this learning lab, we will create a Cloud9 workspace from an existing nodejs bot, and register it on Cisco Spark. Cloud9 by Amazon is a Cloud-based development environment to edit, run and debug source code in various languages. Cloud9 free plan lets you work on an unlimited number of public workspaces, and one private workspace. Click to sign up if you are not already a Cloud9 user.

Note that the Cloud9 signup process requires credit card details, even though you won’t be charged until you opt for a paying plan.

Step 1: Create a Bot account

Log in at “Spark for Developers” and open the "My Apps" menu.

My apps

Click on the “+” button, and choose “Create a Bot”.

Create a bot

You will access the “New Bot” creation form below.

Fill in a name, a unique email identifier, and specify a publicly accessible image URL with a minimal resolution of 512x512 pixels. Feel free to pick this image example for the sake of this lab.

Note that you will not be authorized to pick the email "my-awesome-bot@sparkbot.io" as it is already reserved. Make sure to replace future mentions to the bot email you have chosen.

Bot form


Click “Add Bot” to get your Cisco Spark Bot created.

Your Bot's access token is displayed. Paste it in a safe place as it won’t show up again, and we will use it in steps 2 and 3 of this lab.

Note that a Cisco Spark Bot access token lasts 100 years. If you ever loose or reveal it, you can come back to this Bot details page and regenerate an access token. The previously issued token will be automatically deprecated.

Bot token

Your bot can now be added to any Cisco Spark Room by specifying its email: my-awesome-bot@sparkbot.io in our example.

Go to your Cisco Spark client, and create a new room with your Bot as a participant.

Add bot

Even though you can chat with your bot, you won’t see him answer... as we haven’t connected it yet to any custom code logic. We’ll work on this in the next steps.