Slack Metabot

Whoa, a Slack command-line client inside Slack.

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Having spent the last few weeks working heavily with the Slack API, this seems pretty useful. The Slack API does have a Tester feature for each method like this but it's nice to not have to load up Chrome to see the format of the results.
@SlackHQ for the future! @dblockdotorg tell us what made you build this? Spending so much time in Slack that you thought what else can keep you in longer πŸ˜‰? How do you think the Slack App Directory will change the game for Slack?
@bentossell I built it because I could :) Also it is often useful while developing slack bots.
@SlackHQ has been called the command line for non-technical teammates. (For one instance of this idea, see Partyline's "Future of UI" – For those who never built a website or tinkered around with code, slash commands may be a person's first exposure to programming. Other companies, like @jgvandehey's Growbot, use ascii and emoji to trigger events. There is a transparency to code that is brought out through Slack. @dblockdotorg, this is an awesome idea. I'm curious about a few things: - How has it changed your workflow? - Since this is in a channel, have you found that it increases transparency when building? - How can non-technical teammates who are interested in code watch and learn from your work? Thanks for posting. This rocks.
@wademvaughn Thanks for your kind words! I use the command line via DM primarily, the bot avoids having to type '--slack-api-key' to the command line client, so that can be nice. But if I need to explain to someone inside slack how slack API works I can now demonstrate it. The last question is broader. At Artsy non-engineers use Slack because it automatically augments context (eg. puts a preview for every link or internal data at your fingertips). You can have a 2 minute discussion with all the context and all the people you need to make progress without having to get a room, plan a thing, etc. WRT code specifically when an engineer has done "X", they often point to a Github pull request where "X" is described in human terms. And it's all going through a Slack conversation. A code change is that essential context and often code is fairly readable even by a non-engineer.
@dblockdotorg Have you thought about formatting the json so it's more readable with link breaks and indents using a Slack attachment?
@andygcook I made a change using `JSON.pretty_generate`, so it looks a lot better now. Attachments could be an option, opened