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Slack is a chat client that has reached wide adoption. The rise of Slack has coincided with the rise of chatbots. A chatbot is a simple, conversational interface into a computer program that may have simple functionality, like telling you some simple statistics, or more complex functionality, like helping you manage your continuous integration pipeline.
Bot design and engineering is a new field, and a vast array of resources and techniques are available for developers looking to hack on it. Amir Shevat is the director of developer relations at Slack, and is responsible for communicating with developers about the best ways to build bots for Slack.
After seeing his talk at O’Reilly Bot Day, I had a number of questions about where we are with bots today and where we are going. I enjoyed this conversation with Amir, and if you aren’t already convinced that bots are an important platform for engineers to understand, this conversation will convince you.