CFUNITED Day one a wrap: Sessions, BOFs, and Community

Today was seriously intense. The day started at 8am with a Welcome talk to introduce all of this year's speakers followed by a great keynote address by Ben Forta and Tim Buntel, with guest appearance by Simeon Bateman of the CFEclipse proejct (Thanks for the Sam Adams!). At first I tried attending sessions while taking notes which I later blogged, and this worked for a while during Ray Camden's, Nate Nelson's, and Simon Horwith's talks.


Now Available: Flex for Web Application Developers

The new Macromedia training course that I wrote about in March is now available. First course is May 31st in Seattle according to the Macromedia Training page.

Check out the course outline at Schooner Technical Media Training.

Blog In Black - Outstanding Breezo on Using Eclipse for CF, Flex, ActionScript, and SQL

I'd been considering finding a speaker to discuss Eclipse, CFEclipse, and related as an event at the Online ColdFusion Meetup Group, but Kai Kˆnig of recently recorded a presentation on this.

Kai did an absolutely fantastic job providing a survey of multiple uses Eclipse for ColdFusion, Flex, ActionScript, and as a Database explorer through a discussion of slides and plenty of good demos and walkthroughs.

"Breeze session on Eclipse and how to use it with Macromedia technology"

ColdFusion highlighted in Macromedia Fourth Quarter Results

Betsey Nelson, CFO of Macromedia, noted in the Breezo of today's Fourth Quarter Fiscal Year 2005:

Server products posted nice strong results this quarter with major strategic wins in both Flex and ColdFusion...

I'm still listening, so there might be more on CF. There's definitely a few slides just on Flex in there.

Here's a text version of the quarter's results.

CFMX 7 Verity Error: com.verity.organize.WorkSpaceException

When creating collections in ColdFusion MX 7 via the Administrator or code, you might encounter the following error:

Unable to create collection {collection name}.
An error occurred while performing an operation in the Search Engine library.
Error opening the collection: com.verity.organize.WorkSpaceException: Path not found [VdkError_PathNotFound]. (-104)

The Verity collection directory tree contains a subdirectory called ws to act as a work space during collection creation. When that directory starts to accumulate directories and files, Verity may report this WorkSpaceException.

The work space directory on a "Server Configuration" installation would be
whereas if Verity was installed in J2EE configuration on WebSphere on Windows for example the Verity work space directory would be
where the Verity bits were laid down in the ColdFusionSearchService directory as a sub-installation routine.

To resolve the exception and create Verity collections again, stop the ColdFusion MX 7 Search Service, remove all the contents of the ws/ directory, then start the Search Service.

Macromedia Flex for Web Application Developers - A New Course

View Final Project for Macromedia Flex for Web Application DevelopersThis week I've completed a new Macromedia course, Flex for Web Application Developers, recently renamed to indicate the course's appropriateness for programmers from all web application backgrounds, rather than just ColdFusion. The course is designed to be a day longer than the existing Fast Track to Flex course and has a target audience of web application developers that may not yet be proficient with ActionScript 2.0 or Object Oriented concepts and programming.

The Macromedia Training web page has not yet been updated to include this course, but that is expected soon. I was forturnate enough to participate in the course in its final testing stage where the instructor sought feedback from technology professionals, to be used in carefully tuning the class towards the general skill set of contemporary ColdFusion MX Developers. In addition, this week's course in particular was also used to train Macromedia Training Partners who will later be teaching this course as well.

The Flex for Web Application Developers course demonstrates how to easily build robust Flex applications that provide a sharp looking user interface while integrating with ColdFusion components as the primary data provider. Knowledge of Actionscript 2.0 is not assumed, and the progressive use of Actionscript from day one builds fluency in the language through osmosis, so to speak. The course emphasises programming best practices for Flex's markup language MXML, as well as Actionscript and ColdFusion's CFML language.


TalkingTree Blog joins up with GalaxyGoo Blog

I've recently had the honor to be invited as a guest blogger on GalaxyGoo which emphasizes the unique nexus of web technology and science. Today I've made my first introductory post to GalaxyGoo Blog. Since I've never had an "About Me" section on, I'm reposting my GalaxyGoo blog entry here to serve just that purpose.

About Me
Hello, my name is Steven Erat and I'm the new kid on the GalaxyGoo block, er..., blog. I've been invited by Kristin Henry of GalaxyGoo to contribute blog entries based on my experience in both scientific research and software development. You might even know me already from my blog on or through my employer Macromedia.


Monster Resume Writing Service

I'd like to recommend the Monster resume writing service. Recently I decided it was time to update my resume, especially since my entire career history before Macromedia was in Biology, and I had nothing to reflect the professional computer skills and web-related technologies I've learned in the last 4 to 5 years. I've come a long way since my first BASIC program in 1981 or my first HTML page in 1994.

The service requires that you first complete one of 4 resume wizards, depending on which type is appropriate for your industry or career level. That wizard entails a very lengthy and highly detailed battery of questions requiring not only details and facts but short answers or essays. These questions address your professional career, educational background, certification levels, and has a variety of customizations. I spent 6 hours on a Saturday afternoon completing a wizard because I put a lot of thought into how I responded to questions such as:


Amazon BookKit CFC

I'd like to give proper credit and thanks to Cameron Childress of Sumo Consulting for the ColdFusion CFC that interfaces with Amazon's Web Service for Associate referals. Cameron has dubbed it the "BookKit CFC" and distributes it for free from his website. The books displayed in the Recommendations panel on this page are rendered using BookKit CFC.

The CFC is really a piece of art and I enjoyed reading the code and following the logic. The CFC queries Amazon's webservice, generates the HTML behind each book view rendered, and then caches the HTML result for some interval (controlled in a config.xml file). Each call to the method getRandomASID( ) pages through the cached result list, yielding a new for every page hit.

To enhance your experience here on, I've written a wrapper around the CFC that provides category-specific book recommendations based on which blog category you are viewing, although the main blog page displays a default set of recommendations, and categories such as ColdFusion, Flex, Linux, and Biology display a narrowed list of books. To implement this I use a csv text file to hold the list of book ids, then I filter on the blog category, and finally call the CFC while passing the filtered book list.

Thanks Cameron!

Flex Store Application: A Web Service From ID to Implementation

I'd like to repost my answer to a Forums question about Web Service mappings in Flex. This shows the relationship of a web service alias the Flex Store application to the class that implements the web service.


How does the sample flexstore identify the web service location? I've traced it to the flex-config.xml file, under the white list named service "FlexStoreCatalogWS. I guess my question is how, and to what, does {context.root}/services/CatalogWS?wsdl get resolved?


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