Beautifying Thunder Beta

A few years back I switched to the dark side, and never looked back.  That is until I started beta testing Thunder.  

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Why TryCF.com?

Good question.  Since the launch of www.TryCF.com I have been asked why I created the site, and what it's purpose is.  

First of all, my intent was not to replace cflive.net, at all.  In fact, I first made www.TryCF.com "public" ( not that it was broadly announced, just that it was publicly available ) before cf.Objective() 2013 (May 2013).  So if you look at the timeline of things, that predates cflive.net.  So there.  :)  Joking aside, I really had no idea cflive was being developed, otherwise there may have been an opportunity to colaborate efforts.  Really though, the focus of TryCF.com is quite different than that of cflive.net.  TryCF.com attempts to provide an interactive learning tool that removes the barrier of setting up a local/remote dev environment just to try and learn CFML.  I can't speak for Russ' overall intent for cflive.net, but that doens't seem to be it at all.  Cflive.net is an invaluable tool for quick testing/prototyping of CFML code against both major CFML engines.  I've used it quite a bit, and recommend it when I can.  

Second, trycf.com is meant to be engine agnostic.  You can run your code against Adobe ColdFusion 10 (at the time of this writing, will upgrade as newer versions become available) and Railo 4.1.2 (again, will be upgraded as time goes on).  The target audience of this site probably doesn't care what is running their code, only that it does in fact run.  When exploring a new language it is a huge turn-off to find yourself neck deep in religious debates over which engine or framework, or whatever should be used.  I, as a student, just want to see how CFML accomplishes common things before I commit to researching which engine and downloading/installing/configuring it for development.

Last, TryCF.com is meant to be community driven.  I have a real job (two in fact), not to mention a loving wife and 4 kids.  There's just not enough hours in the day for me to create new tutorials.  Many participated in the most recent tutorial contest (kindly sponsored by Adobe), and as a result we've added quite a few top quality tutorials.  I hope to see this resource grow, and will contribute to it myself (content wise) as often as I can, but it really relies on the CFML community (or the ColdFusion community if the acronym bothers you ;) ).

In a future post I will outline how the site and the cfml runners work.  It's rather an interesting architecture (and mostly free at that).

I'm speaking at cf.Objective() 2014!

Somehow I was able to fool convince the fine folks on the CAB for cf.Objective() to let me talk at the 2014 conference!  This was the first time I've proposed a talk for any conference, and though thinking up titles was difficult, the overall process was pretty sweet.

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