Annotations for ColdFusion Podcast Episode 21: Performance Tuning

I enjoy keeping up with the ColdFusion Podcast whenever I can, but I usually lag behind by a couple weeks until I find the time to listen to a few of them during some downtime. This morning I began listening to the most recent podcast at home, and then continued during my drive to work. The podcast was so interesting that I found that I had to share my right hand between the manual shifter and a notepad where I was jotting down some thoughts regarding Episode 21, Performance Tuning ColdFusion MX Applications.

Here I'd just like to take a moment to annotate some of the bullet points from the discussion while also extending with additional information.


IT Conversations Podcast on Understanding Linux

I recommend this 40 minute podcast of Peter van der Linden on the topic of getting started with Linux to any Linux novice or any Windows user a change to considering Linux. Peter describes the history and culture of Linux, with comparisons to Windows, as well as how to understand what makes a Linux distribution and how to choose one to suit your needs.


Scientific American Podcast

Science researchers, students, and enthusiasts now have a comprehensive and reputable source of science news in audio format since Scientific American has started its own podcast.

Scientific American Podcast

About the host:

Join host Steve Mirsky each week as he explores the latest developments in science and technology through interviews with leading scientists and journalists.

Episode 1:
In this episode, Scientific American editor-in-chief John Rennie reflects on the Korean stem cell debacle; the National Inventors Hall of Fame announces this year's inductees; and evolution defender Eugenie Scott discusses the importance of the decision in the recent Dover evolution trial. Also: hear outtakes from the CSI show you're never going to see on TV. -- Hey, I know that guy!

After some late evening blog reading I put away my laptop and decide to catch the last half of the local news. Channel 5 then begins a web site review in a section they call The Click, and they begin to highlight a website where you can compete for Florida vacation packages. I snag the Tivo remote and hit rewind three times before my wife starts to give me the eye, so I hit record and risk rewinding one more time. Finally, it hits me... I think to myself, that's Doug Hughes' new site, and blurt out, "Hey, I know that guy!". So I get out my laptop to start blogging this - at least its warmed up already.

You know Doug, too. He's the Alagad guy who makes ColdFusion-based software including Captcha and Image CFCs, as well as the new Reactor framework. :)

Turns out that you can watch the video segment on WCVB's website:

The Boston Channel, The Click:
Bid On Your Next Florida Vacation

Discovering the Adobe Bloggers

My view of the web technology world has been almost exclusively through the lens of two blog aggregators, MXNA and Full As A Goog. To my surprise, several new faces have turned up on MXNA today... native bloggers from Adobe itself. I didn't even know Adobe did blogging, so I'm pretty happy to know about this now.

The MXNA category Macromedia has been renamed to Adobe (formerly Macromedia), and now includes notable Adobe gurus such as:

This blog,, now shows up on the MXNA Adobe category. I choose to run my own domain and site independently, and I've never experienced any pressure to move my blog to the domain, especially since I blog a lot of personal material here as well, although my posts are largely about ColdFusion.

So check out!!,... now if we can only convince the Adobe bloggers to start using the Jedi-grade BlogCFC. now using BlogCFC 4.0

With some effort, I migrated TalkingTree from BlogCFC 3.5.2 to 4.0 beta, complete with new look. Ok, so today Ray released the final 4.0 version, so I missed the boat on that one ;-). I've given up the Aura skin in favor of something lighter on the graphics and easier to maintain.

Migrating blog versions was slightly challenging since the BlogCFC 4.0 kit comes with a migration tool for verion 3.8, and there were some changes to the tables between 3.5 and 3.8 so I had to figure those out. Specifically, I had to alter tblBlogEntries to add a column for allowcomments, add the tblBlogTrackBacks, add the tblBlogSearchStats, add the tblBlogSubscribe table and then adjust it coz it was missing a blog column, plus a few other small tweaks.

I also integrated my webcam view and HTTP referers view into the blog using a stripped-out stats.cfm page as template.

Creating the new skin was the most time consuming part since I was having lots of trouble with MSIE and CSS. In every case Firefox worked like a champ while editing the stylesheet, but MSIE wouldn't display the style as I expected it to. There's still a couple issues when viewing with MSIE, but the two browser views are largely the same.

I also had to reintegrate Google Adsense with a smaller size since I couldn't force the 728x90 leaderboard into a smaller space, and I didn't like the way the 468x60 leaderboard displayed, so I used two 234x60's instead and put them in table to force a little horizontal balance.

The final work to be done on the new blog set up was integrating Site Meter stats and the Technorati claim code.

I like many of the new features of BlogCFC 4.0, including real support for podcasting via RSS 2.0 and enclosures, automated pings, better search stats, unsubscribe comment features, disallow comments, and printing support.

Good stuff.

Podcasts from a ColdFusion TagTeam

I'm psyched to see that ColdFusion enthusiasts Bryan Kaiser and Michael Haynie have launched, a site dedicated to ColdFusion news and indepth reviews of web application topics. I found their podcast to be very professional, upbeat, and most importantly very useful. The alternating or conversational approach by this ColdFusion tagteam kept me very tuned into the discussion for the half hour duration. Episode 2 ramps up with an overview of recent news from the ColdFusion blogosphere followed by a lengthy analysis of the history and current state of AJAX while focussing on ColdFusion integration, illustrated with a Google Maps use case with free code that you can download and put to work right away. Bryan and Michael present just the right amount of information to consume during lunch or a long coffee break, ... information you can use. is definitely worth your time.

Breaking the silence

Just when I returned from sabbatical and started getting blog-happy, I ran into an error that prevented me from updating or inserting into the blog database. It had stopped me from adding new blog entries this week, and if you had encountered an error recently when adding a comment, please try again. I worked with my ISP to resolve the problem, and I can finally release my blogging frustrations!! :-)

Error Executing Database Query. [Macromedia][SQLServer JDBC Driver][SQLServer]The log file for database 'TalkingTree' is full. Back up the transaction log for the database to free up some log space.

Back in the saddle again

This week I've returned to the office from Macromedia's generous sabbatical program. For the last 45 days I've occupied myself with a wide range of activities, and surprisingly almost none of which had anything to do with ColdFusion. Now that's a vacation!


[steven@macromedia /work]$ shutdown -h +360 'Going on sabbatical. Please log off'

Like many others at Macromedia, its my turn for a long sabbatical, although I've been eligible for over a year. For the next six weeks, until September 12th, I'll be out of the office. I suspect that this is the first and the last time I'll be able to take such an extended leave.

I plan to spend the first 3 weeks at home, biking, swimming, reading, and blogging. Some of my objectives include reading parts of several technical books including one on Eclipse which has a chapter on building plugins, one on building Dashboard Widgets on Mac OSX, and one on Photoshop CS. I may take some time to read up SELinux, too.

During this last month I've been reading Thomas Friedman's The World is Flat, which I highly recommend, so I hope to finish that up. I think that Friedman's book is complemented by Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel, and by Spencer Well's The Journey of Man: A Genetic Odyssey, but best if read (or viewed) starting with Wells and finishing with Friedman. If I find a day to spare, I think I'll finally sit myself down to watch the whole 8 hour series Cosmos, by Carl Sagan.

During the second half of my sabbatical, I'll be in Barcelona, Spain and then in the high Pyrenees. My wife and I were married in a civil ceremony two years ago and now we will be having a formal ceremony in a 12th century church in a small mountain village near the border with France, close to Pico Aneto, the highest mountain in Spain. I used Ray's BlogCFC to create a dual English/Spanish informational website to assist the guests.

If you're not familiar with the region, check this out. Its a small Javascript app that zooms in on Barcelona and the Pyrennes, which I made for those who will be travelling from the US. It's a little slow in MSIE, but great in Firefox. This was before Google Earth came out, so I was trying to provide a way for non-technical people to get their bearings.

shutdown -h +360 "Going on sabbatical. Please log off"
Broadcast message from root (pts/1)
(Fri Jul 29 11:56:35 2005):
Going on sabbatical. Please log off
The system is going DOWN for system halt in 6 hours!

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