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What kind of PowerShell questions do you answer?

For all Experts that answer PowerShell questions here, what kind of questions do you answer?

A few possible answers that spring immediately to mind:
1) Any and all
2) Only those I already know the answer to
3) Only those that I can answer with 5 lines of code or less
4) ...

Personally, most of the time I'll answer questions that have an easy answer, or that I'm interested in the solution.  Particularly when I was just starting out, if I thought a question was interesting and that I ought to know the answer, I would work to find what the (or a) solution was.  More and more over the last year I tend to ignore the questions that just ask for a script to meet the asker's X number of requirements.  If the asker doesn't provide even the beginning of a script, I'm much less likely to contribute.  I would much rather explain how something works than just provide a script (teach a man to fish, and all that).

How about you (and feel free to say why)?
Rank: Savant

Expert Comment

Chris Dent2015-01-14 12:55 AMID: 141297
I have severe time constraints (that is, tiny children at home and a job which needs me to be working) at the moment minimising the amount of time I can commit to EE.

Therefore, for me it's typically neglected questions where I can figure out the answer.

Like you I tend to ignore the make-me-a-script requests. They really play into the time constraint problem. You might spend a week building something to meet a "customers" specification and they aren't anywhere near as much fun as those asking for help (#include fishing-analogy.h).

Chris
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Rank: Ace

Author Comment

footech2015-01-15 04:30 AMID: 141473
For a while, I answered anything I could, sometimes spending hours researching and testing.  This was more during my first year or two of learning PS (I could call this my learning phase, but does learning really ever stop with PS, or any scripting/coding language for that matter?).  Solving other people's problems can be a great motivator.

After a while I began to feel taken advantage of when answering these questions (I once saw a comment in another forum about not being a free scripting service, and I really like that description).  I tried a few times to prompt the asker for more, and to discourage the asking of make-me-a-script questions, but at the same time I was wondering if I was being too arrogant in my approach.  I admire others' ability to phrase a correction without sounding harsh about it.  Often if you try to guide the asker along the path to their own answer, instead of outright providing an answer, either someone else jumps in with a complete (sometimes more, sometimes less) solution, or you get a lower grade for your efforts.  After a bit more time, I began to feel less like I had to try to answer every question that was asked (especially when I know I could), and pretty much decided I would leave those questions I didn't like for others (that perhaps are in their "learning" phase) who wouldn't mind the challenge/opportunity of doing all the work.  It still bugs me a bit when I see those questions, but not as much (and hopefully less and less as time goes on).
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Rank: Prodigy

Expert Comment

sirbounty2015-01-18 02:21 PMID: 141907
"Any and all" would probably be the closest response from me.
I love learning PS and recognize that even subscribing to those questions that are outside of my capability are going to benefit me in the long run.
I'm all for 'teaching a man to fish', but I also recognize that some folks rely on this service (i.e our skills, when they have neither the time nor inclination to mirror the devotion we have) to aid them in their job.  I do try to teach as much as seems worthwhile, but if someone's simply going to gloss over that anyway, just to grab the script, I prefer not to waste my time (not a hard-fast rule, because I know future visits may bring the opposites' attention as well, so there's always a benefit).
*time constraints certainly always a factor as well! :^)
Cheer guys!
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Rank: Ace

Expert Comment

Subash Sundharan2015-01-19 06:24 AMID: 141992
My participation is very minimal when I am busy with projects or other work related tasks or issues, at this time just answer few easy questions to retain my expert status and free membership. :-)

When I am free, I answer as many questions I can, regarding make-me-a-script requests, I do answer few of them, if it's easy or I am interested in the solution or I can learn something out of it. But I tend to ignore questions which are time consuming..

Regarding 'teaching a man to fish', I do explain my script if the asker is interested to learn, else I wont bother to waste my time.. :-)

I also follow the questions which are above my technical expertise to see the other expert's inputs and to learn from it..
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Rank: Sage

Expert Comment

Joshua Grantom2015-01-20 11:59 AMID: 142148
When I have time, I will try and answer any PS questions I can. I feel it is a good way to keep Powershell fresh in my mind. Once I write a script at work that does exactly what we need, I hardly have to look at it again because we use a lot of automation. I will spend anywhere from a minute to a few hours on a Powershell solution if the request is of interest or an out-of-the-box request. It definitely keeps things interesting.
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