Is there an ESRI labs? Well not technically, but you can find some “lab quality” stuff in ArcScripts. I got to thinking about this when I saw Zillow introduced their own labs section. Specifically this quote caught my attention:
“Every now and then, someone writes a tool in their “spare time” (i.e. nights and weekends) that we don’t have time to fully test to make sure it integrates well with the rest of the site. So, in the spirit of playing in a tech sandbox, we came up with a way to put these ideas out there for everyone to use, test and make suggestions.”
We’ve all seen those cool mashups and tools that ESRI employees seem to trot out every User Conference or Dev Summit so why doesn’t ESRI “formalize” the process some more and let some of these great ideas out into the wild? I’ve mentioned an ESRI sandbox on this blog before and I still think it is a great idea. Many cool ideas have come out of Google Labs and I’m sure that users would love access to some of these great tools that ESRI prototypes from time to time.