At long last we have a real code gallery for the Script Center. This was a project that was in the planning stages for nearly a year. The great thing about the new code gallery is the way it fosters community involvement. The people who best know the needs of the IT Professional, is the community—because they live, eat, and breath corporate IT on a daily basis. The community gets the help desk calls on Monday morning at 8:00 AM, or the emergency alerts on Friday night at 2:00 AM, and therefore the community knows some of the pain points involved in being an IT Professional.
In the past when someone from the community wanted to share a script, they had to write an e-mail to Scripter@Microsoft.Com, I would then paste the script into a web page template, and submit it to the Scripting Editor. He would convert the page to XML, and post it to a staging server, where a background job would pick up the change and replicate it to the production servers. This was a process that in the best of times took several days … when things were busy … well lets just say, there are still nearly 100 script submissions that have yet to be converted.
With the new script repository, the community is in charge of submitting their own scripts. They provide the tags, summary and description when they submit the script. Once submitted, the script is immediately available. This feature, in and of itself, would be a great improvement over the old process. However, as they say on late night television, “But wait there's more …”
The new code gallery has community ratings, rankings, and discussion. These features will encourage collaboration. One thing I learned a long time ago when I was just starting out in IT, is that no one knows everything. Since that time, I have learned that lesson again and again. I may spend 8 hours on a script, and be really proud of it. When I share my script with another scripter, as often as not, I will receive feedback very quickly that point towards improvements. This should not be surprising, given the old saying “two heads are better than one” especially when the other heads are also scripting gurus.
Full disclosure time, there is one significant downside to the new Technet Script Center Gallery … it is highly addictive! I spent more than 8 hours this week playing with the search feature, experimenting with the tag system, and finding all kinds of really cool scripts to examine. I was like a kid in a candy store (ok more like a fat old man in a candy store, but lets not get technical). In a word, it is awesome! Check it out.