Ed Wilson: On Creating the Scripting Wife

Every once in a while, I get lucky. I was lucky when Teresa agreed to marry me, I was lucky when I decided to study for my MCSE way back in 1995, and I was lucky when I decided to add the Scripting Wife character for my Hey Scripting Guy! blog. How did the Scripting Wife arrive on my blog? Well, I will tell you. Teresa and I were sitting around in the kitchen (it seems we do that quite a bit) and were talking about the 2010 Scripting Games. She, in a moment of weakness, happened to mention that it might be fun to participate in the Scripting Games this year. She did this as more of an aside, than a declaration of intent. But this did not stop me. I said, “wow that is cool,” and jumped over to her computer, went to my FaceBook account, and made a posting about the Scripting Wife participating in the Scripting Games. I then hopped over to Twitter, and made a tweet to the same effect. When she started to recant her wish, I simply said said, “You cannot. I have already announced it to the world. Now you have to participate.” To which she replied, “then it will be up to you to teach me, because I cannot understand that stuff you write in either your books, or on your blog. It is all geek to me.”

Her comments cut me deeply, because I have always prided myself on writing clearly. I have also always tried to make my writing easy to follow and easy to understand. But then it dawned on me … there are millions of people who could benefit from learning Windows PowerShell that have no programming background, and who are just as turned off by geek speak as Teresa. This does not mean they are dumb—in fact on many occasions, I am clearly convinced that Teresa is at least as smart as me … if not smarter. But it goes to the heart of the matter … how do you teach someone Windows PowerShell if they have no background in any of the concepts.

The answer? Let someone who is in a similar boat as they are explain it! Thus, in the Scripting Wife articles, we follow Teresa as she attempts to wrestle with learning Windows PowerShell. She is on track to participate in the 2010 Scripting Games in the beginner category. This year, the Beginner category really is for beginners—and I hope you will take this opportunity to start the process of learning Windows PowerShell. On Windows XP, you need to install it … and that was the first thing the Scripting Wife did. The great thing, is that the Scripting Wife does not let me get by with anything … and she also has a great sense of humor.

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