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Learn how two IBM summer interns created a full-functioning basketball chatbot with IBM Watson.

My name is Jazmin Carrillo Morales, and I am an incoming senior at Woodside High School in California. I’m spending eight weeks as a summer intern at IBM’s Watson West office in San Francisco. I had no prior experience working with AI technology, so I knew this internship would be a great learning experience. I am glad to be an IBM intern because I have the ability to learn more about different careers in the company. I am not yet certain what career I want to pursue, which is why I am trying to learn as much as possible and get a feel of what it is like to work for a large technology company.

My name is Miguel Tostado, and I am an incoming senior at Menlo Atherton High School. I am interested in computer science and mechanical engineering, but I’m not yet sure what I want to study, which is why I am excited to be an intern at IBM. At IBM, I want to gain experience and explore the various careers IBM has to offer. In my time here, I have worked on a couple of projects, one being a chatbot, which we will explain on how we created.

We wanted to experiment with IBM Watson® and our manager, Peter Moskovits, mentioned that we could create a chatbot. We decided to create our chatbot on basketball because it is a topic we are both interested in and want to learn more about. We enjoy watching the Golden State Warriors. This past season, we were excited when the Warriors made it to the finals, but we were disappointed when they lost to the Toronto Raptors. We are basketball fanatics, so we created a chatbot that can answer questions about the 2018-19 NBA season. We managed to create a full-functioning chatbot with IBM Watson using resources like YouTube and Google to help guide us in creating it.


  1. The first step is to search for IBM chatbot.


  2. Click on Get started free to start the chatbot.


  3. Use your IBM Cloud login information to access IBM Watson.


If you don’t have an IBM ID, you can easily create one for free.

  1. Click on Create a skill.


  2. Click on Create a skill once again. Disregard the basketball skill on the screen since that is the one we created.


  3. Once you have named and created the skill, you are ready to start your chatbot. There are three key components that make up the chatbot: intents, entities, and dialog.


Intents are customer goals expressed in user input. Determine the types of questions and requests you want your assistant to understand and provide example utterances for Watson to learn from. You can add prebuilt intents from content catalogs, such as general greetings. (See Intents Explained by an IBMer for more information.)



Entities clarify a customer’s purpose by allowing the assistant to recognize synonyms. When Watson recognizes the synonym input into the system, the assistant will choose the best way to respond to the user. (See Entities Explained by an IBMer for more information.)



Design a dialog flow for the assistant to follow while it interacts with customers. A good flow triggers appropriate and useful responses based on the intents and entities detected in the user input. (See Dialog Explained by an IBMer for more information.)

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Once you have created a node under Dialog, you can test your assistant and ask a question that can be answered with the information you have entered in the node.