CFUGitives User Group

I just got back from the CFUGitives user group; and had a few ramblings that I thought I'd share with the world.

First off, I spoke a bit about Flex and demonstrated some of the proof-of-principle demos I'd been working on. Nothing mind-blowing; but it's good to be moving forward w/ the technology.

Second; in earlier meetings they discussed creating a group application. Well, it looks like this is actually going to get off the ground. The 'leader' on the project signed up the project on cfopen.org. Since a lot of the group has high interest in Flex stuff, the decision is to try to implement things as an API; so that any front end can be built on top of it (And theoretically so that future features could be easily tacked on ). I offered to do some object modeling for it. I believe I'll be walking a fine line between Simplicity and Flexibility. Kudos to Erik for getting it started.

Third, we spoke a bit about Woot.com's RSS feed. Some of the items have colons in them, such as "media:thumbnail". How do you access them by name; as opposed to hard-coded array positions. We didn't walk away with a specific solution, but I stepped through the problem when I came home. This was my approach.

First, we need to get the feed:


<cfhttp url="http://www.woot.com/blog/rss.aspx" method="get">
<cfset results = xmlparse(cfhttp.filecontent)>

When traversing feeds like this, I often like to dump them to make it easier to see visually:


<cfdump var="#xmlparse(cfhttp.filecontent)#">

I see the top level channel is 'rss', so let me dump that:


<cfdump var="#results.rss#">

After, RSS is Channel (it's only child)


<cfdump var="#results.rss.channel#">

Now, we're going after media:thumbnail. We can skip the iTunes stuff and go right to the items. I'm not quite sure how to sort out product listings blog entries in the woot RSS (I believe the coder was doing that), so for this example i'm assuming that we're getting item 2, the first woot product (at the time of this writing)


<cfdump var="#results.rss.channel.item[2]#">

From there, I got the media:thumbnail. The ':' is invalid in a variable name, so you can't access it using the structure dot notation we've been using. I used the associative array notation:


<cfdump var="#results.rss.channel.item[2]["media:thumbnail"]#">

From there, we can get the thumbnail location:


<cfdump var="#results.rss.channel.item[2]["media:thumbnail"].xmltext#">

When dealing with foreign RSS feeds, I often use this type of drill down approach to get at the data I want / need.

CSS Training in Hartford, CT

Sandra Clark, is going to be giving a 4 day hands on CSS training class in Hartford Connecticut. The dates will be May 9th to May 12th. Here is the message from her I just saw posted to a mailing list.

It doesn't look like I'll be able to afford it this time around, but we'll try to get her to speak at [one of] the CT User Groups. Maybe we'll try a combined meeting.

Her message follows:

---

I will be conducting a Hands on 4 Day Cascading Style Sheet Class in Hartford Connecticut May 9th- 12th.

A syllabus of the class can be found at http://www.shayna.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=training.syllabus_display&id=1.

I currently have 8 open spots available. Cost of the class is $1,399 per student.

Hope to see some of you there

Sandra Clark

==============================

http://www.shayna.com

Training in Cascading Style Sheets and Accessibility

Go to CFUnited for free!

That's right folks, you too can go to CFUnited at no cost. No, you don't have to buy Micheal Smith one beer too many on the day before the conference. But, you do have have to be from Washington.

The Seattle User Group is sponsoring the trip. Details are from their press release, below. I wonder if I know anyone from that area who might be eligible.

Unfortunately, it looks like they're only buying you the ticket. Travel, lodging, and food are your own responsibility (in my experience that is often the bigger piece of the financial pie when it comes to conference going).

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

For more information contact: Garrett Wiedmeier 206-613-3215 info@seattlecfug.com

SEATTLE COLDFUSION USER'S GROUP CFUNITED 2006 REGISTRATION SCHOLARSHIP

This "scholarship" shall pay for the registration fee of the CFUNITED 2006 conference in Washington, DC, for one individual. The individual will be responsible for all other conference expenses (travel, lodging, etc). This is not a cash award; the Seattle CFUG will pay for the winner's CFUNITED registration on their behalf.

All people interested and currently using the ColdFusion (CFML) web programming language in Washington state in any capacity may apply. The winner will be selected based on a short application and reference check, and will be at the sole discretion of the Seattle CFUG founding members. Decision is final.

Application requirements:

1. You must live or do business in the state of Washington, and verify this in some form.

2. A simple one page essay on why you use ColdFusion and why you need this scholarship.

3. Demonstrate current use of CFML in *any* capacity or skill level (project management plans, documentation, live website link, or other...) The decision will not be based on how advanced the CFML code is, but extra consideration will be given to projects that solve specific problems that needed solutions.

4. Self-employed: One professional reference. Employed: Reference letter from your supervisor indicating support of your attendance, and, beyond unforeseen business circumstances, you will have the time to attend CFUNITED 2006.

5. Current founding members of the Seattle CFUG are not eligible.

Submission Deadline: April 15, 2006 4 p.m. Pacific time.

Submit to: Garrett Wiedmeier, CFUG Manager, via email: info@seattlecfug.com

The Seattle CFUG is an equal-opportunity volunteer user group community.

About the Seattle CFUG: The Seattle ColdFusion Users Group offers speakers, programs and professional development opportunities for webmasters, programmers, database admins, designers or anyone with an interest in dynamic web applications while meeting and sharing ideas with other like-minded people in the greater Seattle area. The group meets on the first Thursday of each month in Downtown Seattle. www.seattlecfug.com.

Garrett M. Wiedmeier Manager of IT Services Downtown Seattle Association Mission: To Champion a Healthy, Vibrant Urban Core

500 Union Street, Suite 300 Seattle, WA 98101 206-623-0340 206-625-9940 fax www.downtownseattle.com

Goodbye Tim

Tim Buntel, the ColdFusion product manager has turned in his resignation.

Tim has been a part of the ColdFusion team since the Allaire days and he was always prominent at various conferences and the blogsphere. It will be interesting to see who replaces him.

I hope he got a nice chunk of cash from various stock options throughout the mergers. It will be interesting to see who steps up to fill his shoes.

No New Atlanta cfObjective

I just heard that New Atlanta will not be a sponsor at CFObjective. I have no idea if they were interested in doing that, but the organizer used the "No BlueDragon, No Microsoft" in a way to entice Adobe to increase sponsorship money.

It apparently worked, as Adobe is paying four-times as much than was initially discussed.

I think the real shame is that this prevents the *BEST* speaker from last year's CFUnited from presenting. When I say best, I'm not giving an opinion, I'm talking about scores from the speaker evaluations. Charlie Arehart gained the highest score of all presenters.

I think I'll give my presentation in my BlueDragon MySpace T-shirt.

The future of User Groups at Adobe

Adobe President & COO, Shantanu Narayen, talks about the future of User Groups at Adobe: http://adobe.breezecentral.com/drupdate0106/

cf.Objective()

cf.Objective() is coming. It is a conference focused on advanced ColdFusion development.

I'm a confirmed speaker. Currently they are accepting topics from other speakers too (you have to log in first).

It should be a nice intimate crowd (comapred to CFUnited which has grown too big)

The future of Coldfusion

Simon Horwith interviewed David Mendels, the new Adobe head of the Flex / CF business for the CFDJ. Here is the article:

http://cfdj.sys-con.com/read/161456.htm

I didn't see any major relevations in there. It sounds like things are same old same old and the next version of CF will have more integration w/ Adobe products (PDF and LiveCycle).

The skeptic in me wants to see it to believe it. Quite frankly, given the amount of functionality in CF, I can't imagine what additions would constitute a major release.

There has been speculation that CF will get an influx of marketing money. While I hope that will be the case, I'm not convinced it will happen.

It is Official

Macromedia.com is now owned by Adobe

Words from Adobe CEO Bruce Chizen

Adobe releases software bundles with MM software

Adobe Web Bundle (Adobe Creative Suite and Macromedia Studio

Adobe Design Bundle (Adobe Createive Suite with Macromedia Flash)

Merger News hits the MM web site

A Macromedia Press Release about the merger (tomorrow) hit the MM web site:

http://www.macromedia.com/macromedia/proom/pr/2005/acquisition_clearances.html

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