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0.2.5 • Public • Published

Google Chat bot toolkit for Node.js

Note: This is not an official Google product.


This is an experimental framework for building Google Chat bots using Node.js.

Getting started - an echo bot

  1. Create a new project:
npm init
  1. Install the framework:
npm install --save @google/chat-sdk
  1. Create an index.js file for the bot:
const { Bot } = require("@google/chat-sdk");

// Create the bot using http transport
// Note: set the project number to enable authentication of incoming
// messages.
const bot = Bot.http({
  projectNumber: process.env.GOOGLE_PROJECT_NUMBER,

// Echo back any at-mentions
bot.message(async ({reply, messageText}) => {
  await reply({
     text: `You said: ${messageText}`

// Start the bot

See the Google Chat bot documentation for instructions on how to register your bot.

You can also experiment on glitch.com by remixing this project

Configuring transports

The framework supports both HTTPS and Cloud PubSub transports.

To create a bot using https, use the Bot.http(opts) factory method. Options include:

  • port (default: 3000) - Port to listen on
  • path (default: '/') - URL path for incoming messages.
  • trustProxy (default: true) - Enables recognition of X-forward-for headers in requests
  • projectNumber (default: undefined) - Project # of the bot in the developer console. Enables verification of the authorization headers in incoming events.

For PubSub, use the Bot.pubsub(opts) factory method. Options include:

  • subscriptionName (default: undefined) - Name of the subscription to listen on

Note: PubSub bots do not currently support all features and may have issues with interactive cards and dialogs.

You can also implement your own transport (e.g. a fake for testing) by implementing the Transport interface and setting the transport via the bot.transport property.

If either Bot.http() or Bot.pubsub() are called without options, the bot will attempt to autoconfigure itself based on the environment.

  • PROJECT_NUMBER - Project number for validating incoming JWTs. When running on GCP, the bot will also attempt to read this from the GCP Metadata API.
  • PORT - Port number to listen on
  • GOOGLE_CHAT_SUBSCRIPTION_NAME - The name of the subscription the bot will receive messages on (pubsub only)
  • GOOGLE_APPLICATION_CREDENTIALS - Te bot uses the application default credentials mechanism to authenticate itself. When running on GCP, the framework should automatically discover its credentials. When running locally or on another cloud, set the GOOGLE_APPLICATION_CREDENTIALS environment variable to the service account credentials for the bot.

Adding event handlers

Add event handlers to the bot to respond to user interactions. The bot framework automatically detects the type of event based on the event type and message content and dispatches the event to the appropriate handler.

Handlers are called with a context object that provides quick access to common fields in the event along with methods for replying to, creating, and updating messages and dialogs.

Note that the context object can be safely destructured if desired.

Handling @ mentions and DM messages

Register a message handler using bot.message() method. THe handler will be invoked for any message that @ mentions the bot or user text in a DM. For example:

// Echo back any useer text
bot.message(async (ctx) => {
  await ctx.reply({
    text: ctx.messageText

Message handlers typically reply with the ctx.reply() method to post a new message in the conversation.

Bots can also register handlers with regular expressions to filter and match. When filters are used, multiple message handlers can be registered. Note that only 1 handler is invoked, and patterns are evaluated in the order they're registered.

// Respond to "@bot help"
bot.message(/help/, async (ctx) => {
  await ctx.reply({
    text: 'Here are some things you can try...'

// Catch all other messages.
bot.message(async (ctx) => {
  // ....

Handling slash commands

Register a slash command handler using bot.command() method. Slash commands can be identified by either the numeric command ID or the command name itself:

// Handle the slash command with id 1
bot.command(1, async (ctx) => {
  // ...

// Handle the '/poll' command
bot.command('/poll', async (ctx) => {
  // ...

For slash commands that display dialogs, use ctx.showDialog() to reply with the dialog:

bot.command('/poll', async (ctx) => {
  const pollConfigCard = {
    sections: [
        widgets: [
          // ...
  await ctx.showDialog(pollConfigCard)

Handling actions

Register action handlers for interactive cards and dialogs using bot.action() with the action name:

// Handle the slash command with id 1
bot.action('submit', async (ctx) => {
  // ...

Link unfurling (launching soon!)

For bots that have configured URLs to unfurl in the developer console, use the bot.unfurl() method to handle unfurl requests. A bot can use either a single generic handler for all unfurl requests or multiple hanlders with URLPattern to match specific URLs. When patterns are used, the resulting match and any capture groups are exposed via ctx.urlPatternResult.

Use ctx.updateMessage() to display additional information where the URL was referenced.

Example with pattern matching:

  hostname: ':customer.issuetracker.example.com',
  pathname: '/issues/:issueId'
}, async (ctx) => {
  const customer = ctx.urlPatternResult.hostname.groups.customer;
  const issueId = ctx.urlPatternResult.pathname.groups.issueId;
  const issue = lookupIssue(customer, issueId);
  const card = buildIssueCard(issue);
  await ctx.updateMessage({
    cards: [card]

Add to and remove from space events

To be notified when a bot is added or removed to a space, use bot.addedToSpace() and bot.removedFromSpace() methods.

bot.addedToSpace(async ctx => {
    text: 'Here are a few things you can try...'

Note that when a bot is first added to a space via an @mention, Chat only sends a single event. If an ADDED_TO_SPACE event contains a message, this framework internally dispatches the event twice; once for any addedToSpace listeners, then a second synthetic event for any messages listeners that match the user content.

Replying to events

The Context instance supplied to handlers includes several methods for replying to events:

  • reply - Replies directly to the user's message with a new message
  • updateMessage - For actions on interactive cards and link unfurls, updates the previous message where the action occurred.
  • newMessageInThread - Similar to reply, but for sending additional messages on the thread.
  • newMessageInSpace - Starts a new thread in the space
  • showDialog - Shows a dialog, either in respond to a slash command or dialog action
  • closeDialog - Closes the current dialog when called from an action handler.

These helpers automatically merges the space and thread names into the message. You only need to supply the message content itself.

Sending unsolicited events

The bot.sendMessage() event can be used to send an unsolicited message to a space, such as when notifying the user about an external event. This method is a wrapper around the chat API and is bound to the bot's configured identity.



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