5. Messaging

5.1. Returning multiple responses

Often, with commands that take a long time to run, you may want to be able to send some feedback to the user that the command is progressing. Instead of using a single return statement you can use yield statements for every line of output you wish to send to the user.

For example, in the following example, the output will be "Going to sleep", followed by a 10 second wait, followed by "Waking up".

from errbot import BotPlugin, botcmd
from time import sleep

class PluginExample(BotPlugin):
    def longcompute(self, mess, args):
        yield "Going to sleep"
        yield "Waking up"

5.2. Sending a message to a specific user or room

Sometimes, you may wish to send a message to a specific user or a groupchat, for example from pollers or on webhook events. You can do this with send():

    "Boo! Bet you weren't expecting me, were you?",

send() requires a valid Identifier instance to send to. build_identifier() can be used to build such an identifier. The format(s) supported by build_identifier will differ depending on which backend you are using. For example, on Slack it may support #channel and @user, for XMPP it includes user@host.tld/resource, etc.

5.3. Templating

It's possible to send Markdown responses using Jinja2 templates.

To do this, first create a directory called templates in the directory that also holds your plugin's .plug file.

Inside this directory, you can place Markdown templates (with a .md extension) in place of the content you wish to show. For example this hello.md:

Hello, {{name}}!


See the Jinja2 Template Designer Documentation for more information on the available template syntax.

Next, tell Errbot which template to use by specifying the template parameter to botcmd() (leaving off the .md suffix).

Finally, instead of returning a string, return a dictionary where the keys refer to the variables you're substituting inside the template ({{name}} in the above template example):

from errbot import BotPlugin, botcmd

class Hello(BotPlugin):
    def hello(self, msg, args):
        """Say hello to someone"""
        return {'name': args}

It's also possible to use templates when using self.send(), but in this case you will have to do the template rendering step yourself, like so:

from errbot import BotPlugin, botcmd
from errbot.templating import tenv

class Hello(BotPlugin):
    def hello(self, msg, args):
        """Say hello to someone"""
        response = tenv().get_template('hello.md').render(name=args)
        self.send(msg.frm, response)

5.4. Cards

Errbot cards are a canned format for notifications. It is possible to use this format to map to some native format in backends like Slack (Attachment) or Hipchat (Cards).

Similar to a self.send() you can use send_card() to send a card.

The following code demonstrate the various available fields.

from errbot import BotPlugin, botcmd

class Travel(BotPlugin):
    def hello_card(self, msg, args):
        """Say a card in the chatroom."""
        self.send_card(title='Title + Body',
                       body='text body to put in the card',
                       fields=(('First Key','Value1'), ('Second Key','Value2')),

5.5. Trigger a callback with every message received

It's possible to add a callback that will be called on every message sent either directly to the bot, or to a chatroom that the bot is in:

from errbot import BotPlugin

class PluginExample(BotPlugin):
    def callback_message(self, mess):
        if mess.body.find('cookie') != -1:
                "What what somebody said cookie!?",