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Why CF?

Posted on 2003-03-11
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Let's say you are in charge of a website which needs work from a front and back-end perspective - admin panels, contact with external sources.  Integration is important, too.  The existing team know PHP very well.

Would you say ColdFusion is the way to go?  Whether yes or no please state why - easy to learn, easy to implement... etc.

I've looked at CF for a little while now and it seems very good, although the Macromedia stuff is very subjective.  I was wanting opinions from current developers.  So please put all the good and bad points forward.


Thanks in advance.
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Question by:mjlindley
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15 Comments
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:HamdyHassan
ID: 8112425
CF is easy to learn = short learning curve
CF is easy to develop.
When it comes to Database handling, CF is the best.

New version CFMX makes developing more easy with new concept of components, it's like two ties.
plus it's faster because you run java bytecode.

check
http://beta.experts-exchange.com/CXO/Web/Web_Languages/Q_20392252.html
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LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:HamdyHassan
ID: 8112468
at the same URL, I found this interesting post

As you know, php and CF accomplish similar tasks and the guys here have already posted alot of the important factors.  In my experience, the choice often ends up being an executive decision - do we want to pay for support, or do we want to go the open-source route and rely on the open-source community for answers.  

If you have to convince an executive that the system you are building "WILL" work - i would go with CF so you can have the comfort of knowing there is  someone ready to answer your questions at all times.  The community support for php is good, and the manual tells alot, but you cant count on people always helping you.

If downtime means dollars, you may want to consider CF - if you like working through things on your own...stick with php.

Also, since you like php and CF - you need to check out http://www.fusebox.org and http://www.bombusbee.com 
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LVL 8

Accepted Solution

by:
TallerMike earned 500 total points
ID: 8112757
http://forums.devshed.com/archive/5/2002/06/4/18789
http://www.phpbuilder.com/mail/php-general/2000102/2508.php

To be honest, I don't really know PHP. I'm more of a ASP/Cold Fusion guy. But if your programmers already know PHP, I don't really see any reason to switch languages. Sure Cold Fusion is a rather easy language to learn.

Considering your team already knows the pitfalls of PHP and probably how to write clean optimized and reliable code... this short learning curve for CF really is meaningless.

In my experience there's a general rule that states "Use the best language for the job". So I guess you've got to ask yourself, is there a reason that you would want to use Cold Fusion over PHP?

I'm kindof curious, who brought up the idea of using Cold Fusion to begin with? Seems kindof odd if you already have a team devoted to PHP to want to switch over.
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Expert Comment

by:substand
ID: 8113541
i don't know if you can integrate php and flash as easily as you can flash and cf- so that might be something to consider as well.

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Expert Comment

by:chrispont
ID: 8121763
Some Points on Coldfusion...

1/ Performance. PHP is know to be considerably slower than coldfusion. Coldfusion has load bearing enhancements and generally renders pages faster.

2/ The whole macromedia suite. Think how easy it is if you set up dreamweaver correctly how you can author pages. Once you set up your database connection, you just hit Insert>Application Objects>Recordset, select your tables and attributes and there's your query.
Want to display your query in a table? Insert>Application Objects>Dynamic table. It couldn't be easier!

3/ CF has integrated POP and SMTP mail components, is fully integrated with LDAP, and has a native search engine built into it based on the very powerful Verity search engine.

Hope this helps!
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Ken-doh
ID: 8127141
chrispont you need to examine your facts:

1 PHP is the fastest web scriptiong language when configured correctly with apache on linux

2 dreamweaver is awful CFstudio is the only way to go

3 the pop and smtp mail i think u mean cfmail is awful and falls over if u send more than 50 emails on a win2k box with exchange as ur mailer - you have to write threads to do this. LDAP is awful due to the nature of its error messages - i have it working took ages

MX is not stable - read mm forums if u dont believe me.
PHP is

THE BIGGEST ADVANTAGE OVER PHP THAT CF HAS IS ITS DEVELOPMENT SPEED you cna do in days what it would take weeks in php.

Cold fusion in my opinion is better than PHP despite what I have said But get it clear CF is not a programing language. No OO approach

my advice to u is use Cold fusion server 5 not MX

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LVL 4

Expert Comment

by:crosenblum
ID: 8132212
Just because it does not do OO approach, does not make it less valid programming language.

OO is not the be all to coding.

I like logical, goal oriented thinking.

To do x, I have to do y then z then a.

But OO is helpful in understanding things like Javascript, css and dhtml.

In terms of understanding methods and properties.

But when it comes to application coding, solid logic with good planning and swift organization, can do about any project.

I am a Professional Cold Fusion Developer, for me CF is the starting point to a Web Developer career. It's ease of rapid development.

Sure like any application language has it's pros and cons, what language doesn't?

Just because it is easy to learn, does not make it a lesser language.

The real key to any language's competency is how well it does in it's main strengths, stability at all levels of traffic, solid database interactivitity.

And the big how much time and money does it take to do x project.

But the language becomes irrelevent if other bad factors in application development come in to place. These may sound very familiar to you.

Bad Planning
Planning for the Short Term, instead of the Long Term
Unclear communication of precise goals and objectives.
Unconcern with quality of the application code and framework.
No effort in creating a professional development cycle and environment.
No project management process or system
No Standards to help indicate the barometer we want to aim for, to keep ourselves at the top of the game.

And my personal favorite, Do it the right way the first time.

Have fun...
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Ken-doh
ID: 8134836
completly agree with you comments above. as I said i like cf. i work for a mm partner and have better cf skills than php.

i would say that if you know php very well. dont go and do the site in cf:

1 license cost: 1000 for a proffesional license.

2 because you lack skill in this area, although learning cf is easy some of the more advanced stuff like ldap is not as easy

3 CFMX is not as stable as php.

4 if you want to do any com+ then cf is not really viable because of cfmx is all over the shop

on the + side

you will learn a new programming language :)
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Expert Comment

by:bobdinski
ID: 8137960
PROS:
Coldfusion is pretty cool for intranet development.  Check out the Verity collections.  You can index just about any file format, and make/call these collection right inside your HTML.  Don't know how hard this is to do in PHP, but coldfusion makes it really easy to index all those nasty little files.

Since coldfusion is tag-based all the reference material is going to be pretty standard...this tag does this...this is how to implement this tag...etc.

Custom tags can sorta act like functions and make developmet OOP-like, for or all you OOP luvahs.

Coldfusion 5.0 was built using C++, so the community that developed it and debug it will be large.  This doesn't mean that performance will be the best though.

If you know assembly you can Hack into the source code.

The best thing is the learning curve.  A highly trained monkey can do tag based web-development (if you have a website about bananas).

CONS:
Performance has the potential to be slow because of all the underlying C++ code (Microsoft's fault).  Performance might be better on linux, not sure.

</beginline>All the tag's can make a "classical" programmer crazy, if thier brain just doesn't function that way</endline>

Malicious SQL can be passed via the URL string, if your programmers don't "type check" on thier SQL statements.

cfmail is bad.


That's all I can think of right now.

-Bob





 







 
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LVL 8

Expert Comment

by:TallerMike
ID: 8138069
Isn't CFMX written in Java?

And I'm afraid that Custom Tags are nothing like OOP. Just fancy includes that are expensive (in processing) to use. Although I do love them! The reality is, if you love OO, then you'll hate Cold Fusion. Old versions of Cold Fusion don't even support functions, and the newer version that do, still don't let you go willy-nilly...
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Expert Comment

by:bobdinski
ID: 8138425
Good point TallerMike,

I was being sorta' "general" about custom tags.
Yes CFMX is written in JAVA so it's fast, because (I think) interpretation is done on both client/server, but CF5.0 was written in C++

-Bob
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LVL 4

Expert Comment

by:crosenblum
ID: 8138567
What is the big deal about OO?

How does it make you a better or faster or more efficient coder?
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Expert Comment

by:bobdinski
ID: 8138679
The big deal about OOP is that you can write functions that take passed arguments from anywhere in your code, do some calculations/whatever you want, then output the value to the spot in your code that you called the allready defined function from.  It reduces the need to write redundant code

EX.
pseuso code:
define function addscore(a, b)
{
  x = a + b)
}return x

pseudo code:
define variable v
define variable d

getfrominput v,d
addscore(v,d)
print addscore
getfromanotherinput v,d
addscore(v,d)

Think of all the possibilities now, nesting, looping, pointers oh boy!

-Bob
 
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LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Ken-doh
ID: 8150376

well with cfmx you have cfc's which are glorified custom tags but are invoked with a cfinvoke command.

also cfmx is about 30% faster on linux with apache than windows with IIS.

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Author Comment

by:mjlindley
ID: 8150478
Thanks to all for their input.  TallerMike was quite active in the thread.  My thanks to him.

FYI: PHP it is!  d:-)
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