I'm Representing Alagad at CF.Objective()!

I'm packing up for my flight up to Minneapolis and am looking forward to seeing everyone and delivering my presentations on OO Design and Open Source Enterprise Java with CF! I also wanted to mention that I'm joining Alagad full time next week, so I'll be representing them and wearing some of their swag at the conference. I will still be contracting at Broadchoice to help them with the Workspace product, but won't be an official employee any longer.

After the conference, I'll find more time to blog, now that the move is over (both to Alagad and into a new house!) It's been a crazy few weeks!

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Slides and Code from My Code Generation Presentation

As promised, here are the slides and code from my cf.Objective() 2008 presentation, "Leveraging Code Generation to Jumpstart Your Development". Check the bottom of this entry for the enclosure.

So far the conference has been great. I've learned a lot at several sessions, including Andrew Powell's integration presentation on using Spring and Hibernate as the Java model for an app using CF for Controller and View. Chris Scott's ColdSpring presentation got my wheels turning with regard to custom Proxy Factories. And the announcement of the ColdFusion Open Initiative was most welcome, with a public bug base and more organized enhancement request system.

I'll post more after the conference is over, but so far it's been as good as I expected it to be!

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Get Model-Glue Training, With ColdSpring, Transfer and Reactor Too

Just a quick note that Doug recently posted about a sweet price decrease for his first Model-Glue training class. Setting up a training business is difficult so the price drop doesn't surprise me at all. You really need to build up a base of happy students who spread the word, and in the beginning that means you need appealing pricing.

Well, this is good news for anyone interested in building their ColdFusion skill set. Not only will you get a good dose of Model-Glue, from the basics on up, but there are course sections on CFCUnit, ColdSpring, Transfer, and Reactor as well. Given the number of questions on various lists and blogs about MVC, dependency injection, object-relational mapping, and general object-oriented programming concepts, this seems like a great way to get your head around a lot of topics quickly and efficiently. Just because some of us long-time CF'ers had to beat our heads against he wall trying to learn things doesn't mean you have to! (I could also tell you about walking to school in the snow uphill both ways...)

Anyway, the upshot is that anyone in the midst of trying to learn these things should definitely have a look at the class. $800 is just really darn cheap, and I wouldn't expect it to stay at that kind of price point for very long. Get in while the getting is good.

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The Bookstore App Meets ColdFusion 8 (aka Operation: AJAX)

I've been playing with the new AJAX capabilities in ColdFusion 8, and I'm impressed. They've really made it easy to add AJAX functionality to an application. As a personal experiment, I decided to try converting an existing page-based app into a single-page, AJAX-driven one. So as usual, I brushed the dust off of my tried-and-true sample bookstore application and went to town.

Some of you might have seen the bookstore app before; I've had it on my site for quite a long time. It's gone through Fusebox 3, FuseQ, Fusebox 4, Fusebox 5, Mach-II, and Model-Glue:Unity versions. It was also the basis for my "Framework-Agnostic Models" presentation at this year's Frameworks Conference.

I was quite stunned to find that converting the Fusebox 5 version into an AJAX application took about 2 hours. Yes, 2 hours. Part of the reason it was straightforward was that the app already leveraged self-contained content blocks for each page element. Basically, each of the sidebar elements, the main page content, and the menu are all CFDIV blocks now. Each one updates on its own, asynchronously, using the built-in AJAX goodies in CF8.

It was interesting to see how my development approach had to change to support a more event-driven GUI. Each link or form is tied to a JavaScript event handler that determines which content elements to update via AJAX. I can see now how doing complex GUI programming is a real challenge, because this was only 8 or 10 events. I think I have some learning to do when it comes to patterns that apply more to GUI development than the patterns I'm used to dealing with in the model.

In any event, I've added this AJAX-ified version of the bookstore to the Framework-Agnositc Models Code and Presentation .zip file in the right sidebar. If anyone is interested in having a look, please do and let me know what you think.

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Mach-II / ColdSpring / Reactor Bookstore Port

Matt Williams was kind enough to make the short jump to a Mach-II port of my bookstore sample application. Thanks Matt!

I hope some folks find it useful. This little app really is taking on a life of its own. ;-)

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