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ColdFusion Frameworks

Working With ColdFusion Frameworks

Frameworks can drastically reduce the time frame of your Development Cycles by letting you focus on the fundamental business solutions rather than getting trapped in the nitty-gritty of developing repetitive code. For instance let’s say you are working on an enterprise level online accounting system coded in ColdFusion. Instead of writing tons of code on how to handle transactions with the database and user verifications, you can work on the actual logic of the accounting system because the framework you are working with provides you with all the necessary routines to take care of repetitive but essential tasks.

So basically a framework is like a library of different code routines that you can use as and when you need them, but the big difference is that once you start working under a framework, it basically controls your work flow, and this is not in a bad way. A framework helps you streamline your development process and maintain code so that it can be easily used and customized.

Being a highly evolved modular programming language, ColdFusion has a wide array of outstanding frameworks to work with – some free source, and some commercial. You choose a ColdFusion framework based on your requirement and level of comfort.

But why would you use a Framework to work on a ColdFusion Application instead of simply writing the code and installing it? A framework is extremely helpful if you’re working on large enterprise level application where you need to manage and track thousands of changes.  When you use a framework you not only use its components you also manage your code through it.  Another benefit of using a framework is that multiple programmers acquainted with the same framework can work on a single ColdFusion Application without ever having worked together.  This way if all of a sudden you have to abandon the project, a new programmer can immediately take on the responsibility exactly from where you have left without going through elaborate documentation.

The most prevalent type of ColdFusion Frameworks is the Model-View-Controller Framework. As the name suggests this framework helps you keep the view and the model separate from each other so that you can independently modify one without disturbing the other. The model part consists of code that excesses data from a database or data repository on the server side and the view part presents the data on the client side.

Some of the hottest Model-View Controller frameworks are:

FuseBox: this is one of the oldest ColdFusion frameworks and it is just like an actual electrical fuse box.  When you work with FuseBox you just have to write ColdFusion templates; you can develop your applications merely by creating CFM pages, cfinclude tags and custom tags. You can also integrate ColdFusion Components (CFCs) in combination with creating templates.  There are two great benefits of using FuseBox:

•    It lets you configure your application using XML
•    It is a good framework for you if you’re just now migrating to the object oriented approach

Model-Glue: this ColdFusion framework uses an XML configuration file and it is an out and out object-oriented, implicit invocation framework. It has been released under lesser GPL that means you can download it for free, use it and even alter it.  It is lightweight enough to integrate with other frameworks.  It is similar to Mach-II but has a slightly simpler functionality.

Mach-II: it was one of the first object oriented frameworks to be introduced after ColdFusion Components were introduced in ColdFusion MX.  It takes care of all the repetitive tasks you may ever have to encounter while developing a ColdFusion Application while you can focus on working on the critical, unique features of your application.  It is ideal for working on large-scale, high traffic applications and it has got a vibrant community constantly working at improving it.

ColdBox: just like Mach-II and model glue cold box too is an object-oriented, event-based, implicit invocation framework.  It has just recently been developed. The ColdBox website claims that the strongest feature of this ColdFusion framework is its extensive and extremely helpful documentation and this is really true; it is very difficult to completely utilize an application without proper, helpful documentation. There are plenty of sample applications included with the framework that you can modify to create completely new applications.

In the coming weeks we will be discussing more ColdFusion frameworks, so stay tuned for updates.

In the meantime, you can visit our CF Section here ColdFusion Development


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