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Creating dependencies between intents lets you guide visitors from one intent to another during in a dialog flow. This is useful in cases where you want to narrow down the question a visitor’s asking so as to provide a more specific answer. If visitors ask more specific questions to begin with, on the other hand, the Unblu Conversational Bot (UCB) can select the more specific intent immediately.

Sometimes, however, you want to prevent the UCB from selecting an intent directly. If you have an intent B that requires the output from the action of another intent A, for example, you want to ensure that intent B is only ever accessible after the UCB has selected intent A.

In such a case, you can create intent B as a subintent of intent A. Intent A is then referred to as intent B's root intent.

Subintents vs root intents

Subintents and root intents are both configured in the Bot Dialog Builder (BDB), and they share many features, but there are a number of important differences.

  • Root intents can’t be deleted.

    Subintents can be deleted. You can also move them from one root intent to another.

  • Root intents can be selected by the UCB using its prediction model based on the user’s chat input and the training sentences associated with the root intent.

    Subintents have no training sentences and are only accessible from their immediate superordinate intents through quick replies, buttons, and the like. This also means you can only use subintents in a single dialog flow.

  • Root intents have a state, such as New or Productive, that you can set in the BDB and which determines whether the UCB takes the intent into account when evaluating a user’s chat input.

    Subintents inherit their state from their superordinate root intent. The UCB never takes subintents into account when predicting which intent best matches a user’s chat input.

  • You can group and label root intents with tags.

    Subintents don’t have tags.

  • Subintents can only be used in superordinate intents, that is, the root intent or other subintents immediately above them in the same intent hierarchy.

Managing subintents

Creating subintents

To create a subintent, proceed as follows:

  1. In the BDB, navigate to the Intents tab.

  2. Click the intent you want to create a subintent for in the list of intents on the left.

  3. At the top of the selected intent’s details, click Add subintent.

  4. In the modal dialog that appears, enter the name of the new subintent, then click Create.

Your new subintent should now be visible in the list of intents on the Intents. The intent that it’s a subintent of now sports a chevron Chevron icon. Clicking the chevron hides or displays its subintents.

If you click your new subintent, a breadcrumb trail with its superordinate intents is displayed above the list of intents.

Configuring subintents

You configure subintents the same way you configure root intents, that is, by selecting the subintent on the Intents tab of the BDB and editing its details. There are, however, a number of differences in the detail view for root intents and subintents:

  • Subintents have a Delete button in the upper right-hand corner of their details. For more information on deleting subintents, refer to Deleting subintents below.

  • Subintents have a Move subintent button in the upper left-hand corner of their details. For more information on moving subintents, refer to Moving subintents below.

* * Because subintents never have training phrases associated with them, they don’t have a Training phrases tab.

  • Since only root intents can be labeled with tags, subintents don’t have a Tags section on their General tab.

Moving subintents

To move a subintent, you must first verify that it isn’t used in a quick reply or an answer of another intent or subintent. You can’t move subintents that are referenced by other intents.

Once the subintent you want to move is no longer referenced by another intent, proceed as follows:

  1. In the BDB, navigate to the Intents tab.

  2. Click the subintent you want to move in the list of intents on the left. If necessary, click the chevron next to each of its superordinate intents to navigate to the subintent in question first.

  3. At the top of the selected subintent’s details, click Move subintent.

  4. In the modal dialog that appears, select the subintent’s new parent intent, that is, the intent it should become an immediate subintent of. The modal dialog displays where the subintent will be moved to.

  5. Click Save to complete the move.

Deleting subintents

Unlike root intents, you can delete subintents. To do so, select the subintent you want to delete on the Intents tab and click the Delete button in the top right-hand corner of its details.

Deleting a subintent also deletes all of its subintents. If you want to keep its subintents, move them before you click Delete.

See also