Blue Dragon J2EE Goes FOSS

Yes! Finally there is a mature version of CF supported by a stable company that is FOSS.

I love CF. I dreaded the thought of having to go back to PHP or learning .NET or Java as main programming platform. I like PHP, ASP, .NET and Java well enough. But CF has spoiled me. It just takes so much more code/work to write apps in these languages. Besides, I know CF like the back of my hand. I *think* in CF. I dream in code. I program in my sleep and when I dream it is genearly from a CF stand point.

I have been learning Java due to my FUD with "CF is dead" and the general lack of jobs for CF in my area. I just got started with Java and to bring my chops up to speed, with my CF chops, on any of the above, will not happen with out some serious effort.

BTW, I never had FUD with CF until I started looking for a job outside my geek friend circle last year. But that is another story for another time.

But no more. With Blue Dragon J2EE going open source it means that all the companies and dept's that balked at the $7500 per box cost for Enterprise CF have no (good) reason to do so anymore. The $1500 jump in price for Adobe's Enterprise version really pissed me off seeing that it effectively priced itelf out of the ball park for most (mom and pop or local) ISP's and hosting companies and grass root startups (like my past efforts).

The one thing I have learned while learning Java is how powerful (and easy) CFML is. When I started learning Java (and OO programming in general) my eyes became wide open and realized how little I knew and that I was just scratching the surface to the potential of CF.

A few years back, I had foolishly thought that I had done pretty much most every thing that could be done with CF. And at the time, just around when cf 6 was released I probably was pretty much versed in 80-95% of the language to the point where it was rote.

Imagine how stupid I feel now with a ~year of OO under my belt and still not knowing shite.

So I DL's the J2EE version of BD, read the docs. I deployed it on TomCat and got busy.

First thoughts: TomCat was at 23 megs just sitting there. With BD it hit about 33-35 megs, again, just sitting there. It was at about 45 megs running some simple CFM's, i.e no CFC's. I did beat on it a bit (looping over 10,000 items) but it never went over 45 megs. Adobe CF 8 on tomcat hovered at easily twice that and the stand alone version (on apache) kisses 200 megs (sitting there) not including the ODBC, .NET bridge or search services,

All I have to say is that I am thoroughly impressed with BD. Aside from some minor syntactical difference, and missing some minor functionality from Adobe's offering; I am very, very impressed.

In fact, after reading the docs, the enhancements that BD brought to the plate (for CF 7.x) more than makes up for its compatibility issues.

So hello BDJ2EE. Me love you long time.

Open Source my ass

Open Source is starting to get on my nerves.

I love open source about 90% of the time. But FF and Eclipse are turning into a bloated sacks of fark that makes MS's worst bloated sack of fark look like notepad.

Let me see.... Right now FF is using 450 megs of ram and Eclipse is @ 358 megs.

A browser using 450 megs of ram? I close out all but one browser window and it is still using 450 megs. Open what? Suck what?

If a site has a flash video (like Youtube), FF pegs the processor of my 3 yr old (1.8 gig P4 - 1.28 gig ram) laptop and grinds it to a farking halt. Unusable.

Flash videos also pegs my 2.8 gig duel processor HP box. Nice.

No wonder I think that OSS zealots are idiots.

"But OSS is FREE!"

So is dirt. Blow me.

I don't know shit....

If you are a CF developer (or web developer) and you are still using DreamWeaver or Homesite or CF studio and not using Eclipse or any other of the advanced IDE's like Komodo, Visual Studio, Aptana, NetBeans etc, *you literally have no idea what you are missing out on*.

If you use F1 on DreamWeaver, Homesite or CF studio as a primary source of information about programming, CSS, HTML and your available options you are also missing a HUGE piece of information .

I have been using Eclipse for about 9 months now and the one thing it has taught me is how little I know. When I first fired up CF studio some 10 odd years ago I looked at all the CF related buttons and the options and felt clueless.

By using various Eclipse distros like the one provided by Pulse I feel even more clueless than I did 10 years ago. AND I have a working knowledge of web development and client and server side languages like JS, SQL, XML, XSL, HTML, XHTML, CSS, ASP, PHP, RegEx, CFML etc under my belt. As well as being exposed good doses of VB, ASP.NET, C#, ROR, Java, PERL, Python etc over the years.

The one thing I am finding out that I don't know shit.

At FSU the is an engraving on Dodd Hall that reads "The half of knowledge is to know where to find knowledge"

Now I know the other half of knowledge is making sure that you are being exposed to *new* knowledge on a regular basis.

If you explore Eclipse it will end up teaching you more than you can possibly imagine.


My new favorite things: Groovy and Grails

I ran into it here.

Sean Corfield wrote on it

I have been looking for a replacement for CF for some time now. I am not taking any chances and started learning Java. As you might know Java is huge and it is going to take a while to get up to speed with it. I have played with ROR and and Jruby I am not fond of the syntax or the development process

Enter Groovy and Grails. Grails makes some pretty complex and advanced techniques ridiculously easy to do. And the language is similar enough to CF and CF script to make the learning curve and barrier to entry not as steep as say Ruby or Java. And since it creates Java Byte code it should (in theory) run side by side with CF (That is this weekend’s science experiment). Basically to lets you write Java apps with out having to actually write Java.

Some of my favorite things: CF, PHP, Java, ROR all playing together. Literally.

I am in search of the perfect application stack. There are many things about the above app stacks to love. I like them all. I have used all of the above to varying degrees. I have been on the Java train for some time and have been trying to get my head around it for the last few months. I wrote a couple POC apps in ROR to see what the hype is about and have been using PHP for years. And CF has been by my side for the last 10 years or so... A while back I was giving jRuby a spin using GlassFish and NetBeans and I really liked it. I liked it a lot. I also liked working with Java in NetBeans.

The thing is, I can't get them to play together all under one roof.

CF runs on Java so that is a given. PHP can play with Java a and ROR has been ported to Java via JRubyy. CF can talk to PHP and Ruby. I just wish I could get the all to run together, on the same machine, on the same web/app server, on the same port.

So I tried to install CF 8 as a WAR file on GlassFish and it worked. But CF 8 Enterprise is $7500, so I tried installing Railo and that is running fine. I am about to see if I can get JRuby and php/Java bridge to run as well.

If I can get all of these to run on the same server (on the same port) I will have the perfect platform. The RAD capabilities of CF and ROR, the bazillion OS PHP web apps out there and the power of Java (and bazillion prebuilt Java apps and tags as well).

ZDNet disgusts me more and more everyday

Every time I get one of their "Tech updates" it has at least one story that fans the flame of the eternal (and in my opinion, STUPID) holy war. My opinion is that software (OS's included) are tools to get a job done. Look, it is a hammer, not a freaking religion. For 99% of the population computers are, much like a truck, a means to an end and not the end themselves. But of course there are always those people who become emotionally involved with their tools and have those stickers of Calvin, of Calvin and Hobbes, peeing on the rival truck's logo. Ford drivers have Calvin peeing the Chevy Logo and vice versa. Most people would probably agree that the whole Chevy vs. Ford debate is a big adolescent prick wagging contest and, at its core, is pretty damn stupid. If you look at it from this vantage point, the whole Windows vs. Linux argument here is basically on the same level. It is a bunch of "grown ups" carrying on like kids on a playground except the mantra of "my dad can beat up your dad" has been replaced with "my Operating System can beat up your Operating System"

I am an IT professional. In being so I keep up on the latest trends by reading blogs and subscribing to trade journals and newsletters like InfoWorld, IDG,,, and so on. In comparison to these journals, ZDNet reads like a gossip column. Some of these "Tech Update" have more in common with Joan Rivers's coverage of Hollywood red carpet events than IT professional's covering industry events and trends (you know who you are). Do any of the aforementioned trade journals partake in ZDNet's brand of IT yellow journalism? In a word, no. They offer sound, competent coverage of pertinent industry news, developments and tools. Often times they do have their own slant or agenda but they don't use sensationalism to drive traffic to their website's comment section. I would wager that the majority of the traffic on the ZDNet news and blog site is generated by their "discussion" section.

I use Linux freakin every day. I develop on the LAMP stack, among others. It is a fantastic platform. We also develop using the Microsoft, Adobe, Sun and New Atlanta stacks. Why? There are several reasons, but mostly because it is more cost effective. Visual Studio is a fantastic product. Java is, well Java. Flash and Flex don't have viable alternatives, and we can get ColdFusion apps out the door in half the time it takes to develop them using "free" platforms like LAMP or .NET.

I use Open/closed Source tools every day. For instance my primary IDE is Eclipse. Eclipse is absolutely astounding. But I also use DreamWeaver, mostly because it is the best tool for building web based GUI's. My Databases of choice are MySQL, Derby and MS SQL Server, in that order. I love MySQL. It is by far my favorite, but SQL Server's Data Transfer services make MySQL look like a child's play thing. Mind you, all of them are outstanding at what they do. They just do different things better than the other. Do I care if they are Open Source or not? Not really. Just as long as they do what I want them to do and gets me from Point A to point B in the most efficient, practical and cost effective manner.

I use Windows as my OS of choice. Why? One reason is that a good portion of my day in, day out tools run on Windows with out having to kludge together a work around or have some apps be crippled or semi functional, like I would with Linux. Another is that Macs, while very nice, are still too expensive. The other reason is that *I don't like* the Linux desktop environment. I have tried to like it. I really have. I tried to switch in earnest. I used it almost exclusively for three months, so I know. But after 12 weeks of kludging together a work-arounds and a few rounds of dependency hell, I finally said screw it. I need to get some work done.

What really bothers me is that I have been played for a fool by the editors of ZDNet. Once again they have sucked me into this time wasting and ultimately futile debate, AGAIN. I stopped get the ZDNet news letters a year or two back for the same reason. But I started to do so again, despite the flame bait that they use to drive traffic to their site, because they do have items of professional and personal interest. It is rather insidious how they drag you into the fray. But now I am going to back off and port the energy that I have wasted in this mindless debate into developing my skills on BOTH Windows and *nix platforms.

And remember, you are being played as a fool in order to pad another mans bank account. Y'all have fun pounding sand. One day it might turn into glass.

FireFox is a P... I.... G.... PIG

I love Firefox. There are a couple of things I don't like about it, but for the most part it is fantastic. I can't see myself functioning with out PlugIns like Google toolbar, Webdeveloper, FireBug and Gspace. But the thing is a ram PIG. It has SERIOUS memory issues. I don't know if it is the plugins or what, but when my system is running slow at work I am usually pretty sure it is Firefox sucking 400-900 megs of RAM. Sure I have 15 browser windows open (IE doesn't get that bad) but DAMN if that thing doesn't sucks down ram like College Freshmen suck down free beer. But here is the kicker, I lock my workstation at the end of the day I just lock it and leave my apps running so I can pick up where I left off. I have come back the next day and and my box will be sluggish (Mind you this is a brand new Dell business class box with 2 gigs of ram and two P4 Duel Core 2.8 GHz processors). I look at the task manager and sure enough it is Firefox gobbling up ram. One time it sucking up 1.9 GIGS of RAM!!!

Slash Dot'ers Crack Me Up.

I am all about Open Source. I love it. It has changed computing and has contributed to the betterment of all users. I use TONS of OS Software and at work I am known as the Open Source Guy.

But I HATE Open Source fundimentalists. They are nothing more than elitist, intellectual bigots and snobs. That is why I use the term Open Sores as a category on my blog

So when I saw on that Apollo was featured on slash dot I HAD to look.

JD on EP  was nice enough to highlight some of the comments

My overall impression is that there are many reactionary attacks based on insufficient study of source materials, as well as an impressive number of defenses based buttressed by observable reality. One unstated subtext among many attacks seems to be "I don't like it so no one must be permitted to use it." Overall trend is positive, though.

From there I ran into this thread on slash dot. As far as I am concerned complaining about Flash not running on Free BSD is like complaining about water being wet, as illegalcortex pointed out in a very humorous manner.
illegalcortex (1007791)

Just give up. Otherwise, this will eventually end with them complaining that it doesn't run on the VIC-20.
by MaggieL (10193) 

Nobody *made* them call it a "cross-operating system runtime"...excuse us for asking how many operating systems it crosses.

They could have just called it a "proprietary thing to build apps with", but somehow that sounds less appealing.

illegalcortex (1007791)

I'd hate to be the sporting goods salesman when you people come around to ask about the cross-country skis...

MaggieL (10193)  

I'd hate to be the sporting goods salesman when you people come around to ask about the cross-country skis...

"How much country can I cross with these skis?" is so unreasonable to ask...

Look at it this way: if your OS portfolio is Mac and Windows, then you're about as "cross-platform" as Excel is.
illegalcortex (1007791)

"Can I cross water with these skis?"

"Well, no, not really. They're not water skis..."

"HAH! Do you realize water covers almost 71% of the Earth's surface. So you're telling me these skis are useless on over two-thirds of the planets surface?!"

"Uh, I'm not really sure what that has to do with-"

"And these skis, can they be used on mountains?"

"Well, mountains with snow and-"

"Not rocky mountains? What part of the definition of the word 'country' says that it doesn't include rocks?"

"Again, I don't really see-"

"And how about roads?"


"Yes, roads. Streets. Boulevards. Avenues. And sidewalks. And freeway entrance ramps. And stairs."

"Look, are you actually going to buy these skis?"

"Why would I buy these skis? I live in Los Angeles and it never snows. So until you come out with some skis that can be used in downtown LA, I suggest you stop calling these "cross-country" skis. Also, I don't have any legs, you insensitive clod!"

The part about the stairs cracked me up.

Look.... If something will run on Windoze (sic), Mac and Linux, or 99% of the machines out there, then it is cross platform.

CFEclipse All-in-One (BETA)

Mark Drew announced an update to CFEclipse All-in-One. This little nugget of fun is a standalone version of CFEclipse. All you need to do is unzip an run it.

You can download it here:

What I like about this is that it is a stripped down version of eclipse that is just 64.6 megs after being unzipped compared to the 155 MB of the standard Eclipse install (including the CFEclipse plugin). That makes it PERFECT for my CF(Absolutely)Anywhere project. That just bought me an extra 90 MB of space on my thumb drive. Thanx Mark!

In case this is your first time trying CFEclipse you can download the ColdFusion FlexBuilder Extensions here.

And here is how to enable Eclipse RDS Support courtesy of

CFEclipse / Eclipse Resources

Eclipse Modeling Framework (EMF)

Installing the DBEdit Eclipse Plug-in For Use With MS SQL 2000

DBEdit Plugin for Eclipse

The Dopefly Tech Blog - tons of hints, tips and resources for Eclipse and CFEclipse

The Dopefly CFEclipse Resource Page

The Aptana JS/CSS/HTML plugin for Eclipse:

Aptana review from


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