Neptune: New Framework for the New Year

Many years ago, I was copying an application from one site to another. The task seemed simple enough, but it was taking a long time. First I had to copy the code. Then I had to create the tables/columns/primary keys. Then I had to create any folders being used to store uploaded file (or if they were part of the application, delete any uploaded files from the folders that I copied). Then I had to change the look of the program to match the site to which I was copying it.

I remember thinking that it should be easier. I resolved that I could make a "Ten Minute Install". The goal turned out to be a bit harder than I imagined at the time (though not nearly ambitious enough in the long run).

Years later, however, this would be a major piece of my framework. Except instead of a "ten minute install" I have about a ten second install. To copy a Neptune program from one site to another just requires copying the folder that holds the program and then browsing to it.

By doing that, the files are copied and the tables/columns/primary keys (and optionally some data) are created. It will also set up folders for uploaded files and run any custom installation code. The program will automatically use any settings (including appearance) on the new site.


Another Fun Framework

With all of the ColdFusion frameworks that have been released this year, this feels a little like "me to". The fact of the matter, however, is that this framework has been in development for a few years and is being used on a dozens of sites. Moreover, it is different from other ColdFusion frameworks in some pretty significant ways.

The framework doesn't have a name yet. I have been calling it "AFF" ("Another Fun Framework" or "Anti-Frameworks Framework") so far, but it needs a better name pretty soon. I'm open to suggestions, of course.

I wasn't sure how to approach my first blog entry on the framework, so I decided to just answer the questions that I normally ask when I see a framework.


Why I don't like Hub-and-Spoke

In my recent review of Luis Majano's ColdBox presentation, I mentioned that I don't like Hub-and-spoke. I was asked for clarification on why Hub-and-Spoke doesn't work for me.


Framework Presentations: COOP and ColdBox

The Online ColdFusion Meetup Group had two presentations yesterday and I was fortunate enough to be able to attend both. The first one was from John Farrar about his COOP framework and the second was from Luis Majano about his ColdBox framework. I haven't used either of these, but I have been interested in both for some time.


AppLoader: Loading Application-Scoped Components

Early in my use of Application-scoped CFCs, I realized that I would have to have some mechanism to reload them when I changed the code.


John Farrar on COOP

Yesterday John Farrar presented to the Online ColdFusion Meetup Group on his forms custom tag set, COOP. Actually, he describes it as a framework to separate page markup from processing logic.


Database Introspection or Database Definition

In most of our interactions between code and database, one dictates the other. If we are working with a legacy database, then the structure of the database will dictate how we write our code. If we are proceeding from a visual prototype, then our database follows from our design.


My Weekend (Data Transformation,TDD,CFUnit)

We have been working to enable access to our data via ODBC and/or MS Access - a project more complicated than expected. While we were working on this, I went to cf.Objective.

Among the very good presentations I attended was one called "Test Driven Development" by Paul Kenney. I had attended a few online presentations about TDD before and read a few articles as well. I always came away thinking that I should try that out "some day", but also feeling like I didn't quite grasp the concept fully (I did not grok TDD).


Peter Bell on LightWire

I attended Peter Bell's online presentation on LightWire Wednesday which was put on by


What is this Framework for, Anyway?

On the CFCDev list, Barry Beattle just asked several questions trying to understand a badly-written Fusebox 3 app. One of his last questions was "what pain do these actually solve?".

To me, this seems like a really good question. I frequently see discussions on whether frameworks have any value or which frameworks are "best". The first discussion seems to produce a lot of heat with the non-believers saying "That doesn't seem to solve any problem that I have". The second discussion seems to generally resolve with "It depends.".


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