Structure!

The main features of the Firebot Botbuilder are briefly introduced below.

Editing

Elements (blocks and connections) can be edited via the side menu by simply clicking on the respective object. The side menu slides out of the left side of the screen.

The detail menu is activated by right-clicking (or long pressing) on ​​a block or connection. The respective element can be copied or deleted (red field).

From a block you can also create connections (green field), or the block can be removed from a group (if they exist).

Multi-Select

Multiple blocks or connections can be selected by pressing 'Shift' (or 'Command') and simultaneously clicking and dragging with the mouse.

These can items then also be moved or added to a group.

Creating new elements

In the left upper edge there is a blue plus-button. This makes it easy to create new blocks, connections, groups, and templates.

Simply click on the blue '+' and select the respective entry.

Zoom & Navigation

In the Firebot botbuilder you can zoom in via the mouse wheel (or touchpad). The position can be panned by holding down the left mouse button and simultaneously moving the mouse.

The overview can be kept at any time via the Navigator in the lower right corner of the screen.

Components

The bot roughly consists of two types of components: blocks and their connections with each other.

Blocks contain the contents and actions of the bot. Texts and media that the bot sends to users are stored here, for example.

Links link two blocks and serve users as an interaction. These can occur either in the form of Buttons ('Quick Replies') or text input. Each connection can also contain a combination of actions.

The Graph shows you the bot as a kind of flowchart. The bot starts at the orange marked block. Then the bot "walks" through various connections \ (arrows) and blocks \ (rectangles). The path is determined by decision logics and user input.

Blocks can be created via the Plus button on the top left or directly via the Detail menu (right-click on a connection). In the case of the detail menu, simply click on an empty space in the editor. This creates a new block as well as a connection to it.

Blocks

In blocks you set the reaction of the bot to user input. To edit a block, open the side menu by clicking on a block with the left mouse button.

To create a new block, click on the blue + button in the upper left corner and select the first option with the speech bubble:

Tab Content

  • Title: Each block requires a name which helps to distinguish it in the graph.

  • Tags: optionally set, to identify the block in the backend (can be searched for).

  • Content: Here you define the content the Bot sends. There are currently five types:

    • Text & Links: classic text and web links
    • Media: Pictures and videos (or GIFs)
    • Gallery: Multiple elements arranged side by side with picture, title, optional detail text, URL to a page and clickable button (s)
    • Buttongroup: One or more buttons that open an external web page or call an action. Web Link Size specifies the size of the window being opened [more].
    • Buttongroup in the interface:
    • Looks like this in chat:
  • Pause: Delay time in milliseconds until the bot continues. The bar below lets you change the delay time.

  • Random: If this option is enabled, the bot randomly selects a response from the blocks created under "content".

  • Connections: Here you can see which other blocks are already linked by clickable text bubbles or text input.

  • Remember: The bot remembers this block as the most recently called one for a specific user as soon as it is displayed to him or her. If another block is called afterwards, it will be remembered as most recent. Via the action (see next point) 'Show last remembered block ' this block can be called from any location in the bot (provided that the calling block is not remembered).

Tab Actions

When the bot calls a block, it can also execute Actions (also: 'functions') [more about actions].

The name of the selected action is displayed at the top. With a click on it the action can be edited.

Further functionality

In addition, you can find these buttons at at the bottom of the dialog window:

  • : Deletes this block.

  • Set as starting block: Sets this block as the bot\'s entry point for new users.

  • Remember block: Defines if the block should be saved in the chat history. The action [Show recently remembered block]{actions.md#remembered} uses this functionality.

  • Test block: Launches the bot in test mode on Facebook Messenger, starting with this block.

Connections

Connections between blocks define a response option (button or text input), which is given to your users after the display of one (or several ) blocks. Each block can have several of them.

To edit a connection, open the side menu by left-clicking on it.

To create a new connection, you can either right-click a node an select the green connection button or via the menu in the top left corner, which is accessible with a click on the blue + button:

Settings for a connection

  • Name: name for this connection to distinguish it in the interface (is not displayed to the user).

  • Type: Type of the response. Quick Replies are clickable buttons; Text input lets users themselves enter text and Location takes the user's the position as input.

Type 'Quick Reply':

  • Title: Title of the (blue) button (Quick Reply) which will be displayed to the user.

  • Image Icon: Link that points to a picture to be displayed inside the button.

  • Text matches: Keywords that count as answers when typed in by the user. If users type in and send one of these keywords, that link will be activated - just like clicking on the quick reply. The type of user response remains Quick Reply.

  • Conditions: Can be set to define if the connection should be shown to users, dependable of a comparison with a variable.

  • Actions: Functions that are executed when the response is activated [more about actions]

  • Connections: Blocks tied together by this connection. The bot displays the response selected in the dialog window for the block selected Origin block. If the user selects this answer, the Destination block is displayed as next block in the chat.

Templates

Templates can be used to integrate predefined components consisting of blocks and connections into a bot.

A template is also created using the + button in the top left corner:

A template can now be selected in the dialog box. This opens a wizard that guides you through the required steps. Thereupon, a new sequence of blocks and connections is integrated into the bot according to the template. These can be edited and modified regularly.

More Interface Functionality

Working with the graph

Groups

  • Create groups:


  • Assign blocks to groups:


  • Move groups:


  • Collapse & expand groups:

Testing

The blue button Test Bot lets you test your bot on Facebook. You can find it directly above the graph view.

The search field can be used to search the graph for blocks, connections, and tags. Found items are grouped and can be focused by clicking on them.

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