Trigger intent and action

I would like to initiate a story from a Python program, based on an external event. This is inspired by the example Reminderbot from @koaning . Assume I have rasa server and rasa actions running.

Assume I have a Python program as follows:

import requests

def do_stuff():
def sensor_plant():
    # "reads sensor plant"
    event_plant_dry = True
    return event_plant_dry
def do_more_stuff():

def run():
    event_plant_dry = sensor_plant()
    if event_plant_dry:
        payload = {"intent": "EXTERNAL_dry_plant"}
        r ="http://localhost:5002/webhooks/rest/webhook", json=payload)
        # expected response Your plant needs water! Let me know if you are done.

if __name__ == "__main__":

Assume I have an Python program as follows:

from rasa_sdk import Action, Tracker
from typing import Any, Text, Dict, List, TextIO, Union
from rasa_sdk.executor import CollectingDispatcher

class ActionWarnDry(Action):
    """Informs the user that a plant needs water."""

    def name(self) -> Text:
        return "action_warn_dry"

    async def run(
        dispatcher: CollectingDispatcher,
        tracker: Tracker,
        domain: Dict[Text, Any],
        ) -> List[Dict[Text, Any]]:
        dispatcher.utter_message("Your plant needs water! Let me know if you are done.")

        return []

Further yml files include the following:

nlu.yml no specific additions as in reminderbot


  • rule: warn dry plant steps:
    • intent: EXTERNAL_dry_plant
    • action: action_warn_dry



  • EXTERNAL_dry_plant
  • all other intents as in reminderbot


  • action_warn_dry
  • all other actions as in reminderbot


  • story: water the plant steps:
    • intent: EXTERNAL_dry_plant
    • action: action_warn_dry

Then if I run, I would expect the response r to be “Your plant needs water! Let me know if you are done”

However, I get a different unrelated response. Do I need to change the payload, and if so how, to trigger the desired response “Your plant needs water! Let me know if you are done”, which should allow to proceed the dialogue? A second question would be: are the story and rule definitions not redundant?

@Roel in the future, could you add markdown syntax to your posts with code highlighting? That way it’s much easier to distinguish between code and text. For a tutorial on this, check out this guide.

Also, you can ping me on this forum by adding a @ in front of my alias, like @koaning.

Just so I understand the context better, what responses did you get back?

Also, can you confirm what service is running here? Is this the action server?

Thanks I will certainly make the post more readable. I just found out how to edit it.

Regarding the response: If I used as message one of the other intents of the various intents I have, e.g., what is the time? then the response is the actual time. So far so good.

This is I think the default rasa server running locally on my machine.

Are you running an action server as well? The custom actions run as a separate service to the core Rasa Open Source service.

Yes I start with a Terminal in Pycharm with the command:

rasa run -m models --endpoints endpoints.yml --port 5002 --credentials credentials.yml

Next I run in a second terminal:

rasa run actions

Then I run

In that case it seems that this line:

r ="http://localhost:5002/webhooks/rest/webhook", json=payload)

Is asking a custom action to run. You should get a response with information.

You seem to expect that sending a payload to the action server causes an update in a conversation. Is this true? The action server is designed to merely respond to Rasa Open Source, it doesn’t know anything about where certain conversations are happening.

So something like the following may happen:

"Sensor measures dry plant"
Bot: You need to water the plant. Please let me know if you are done.
Me: I have watered the plant
Bot: That is great. Did you water the other plant too?
Me: No.
Bot: Please do so and let me know if you watered both plants.
Me: I have now watered both plants
Bot: Thank you

Thus the initiative is with the bot, based on external event. I would like to know what the best way is to accomplish this.