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When a user asks Alexa to open a skill, the request is routed to the skill’s back-end, which determines what behavior was requested and an appropriate response. In this lesson, you will create that back-end with JavaScript. We will store and run our code in AWS Lambda, where it will be accessible by our skill. We call that code a Lambda function.

Why AWS Lambda?

AWS Lambda is a serverless compute service that runs your code in response to events. It has many applications, but it’s ideal for building Alexa Skills. It:

  • offers a free tier AWS account with up to 1 million requests per month,
  • works with the Alexa Skills Kit SDK, and
  • automatically scales to support the rate of incoming requests without requiring you to configure anything.

In this course, we assume that you’ve already built your skill’s interaction model in Build Your First Alexa Skill. If you haven’t done that, take the time to complete the course and come back when you’re ready!

We will also use this opportunity to customize the skill’s response to include your name, so Alexa responds:

  • “Hello John, welcome to the Codecademy skill”

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