There have been quite a few announcements of new features coming out in ColdFusion 9 (codenamed Centaur) so I'll just hit a few of the most exciting to me:
- CFaaS (ColdFusion as a Service) - ColdFusion core services are available via web services such as PDF document management, email, charting and image manipulation.
- Enhanced CFSCRIPT support - that's right! The tag functionality we have been been breaking out of script for is now available in cfscript! No more switching back and forth... use script when it makes sense for the entire process, not just bits and pieces.
- Implicit getters and setters - I just cannot say enough about this feature. Thanks Adobe!
- Lots of changes to CFCs - too many to list, just go check the docs.
- Caching improvements - granular control of objects and page fragments to disk or memory cache.
- Portlets - Government shops will love this one. You can now expose ColdFusion applications as portlets in leading JEE portals.
- Desktop server manager - AIR app lets you manage multiple servers from the same console (even supports clusters).
Now to the second release of the night - I've seen quite a few ColdFusion IDEs - having worked in ColdFusion Studio, Homesite+, instructing in Dreamweaver and rocking the house in CF Eclipse, and now I'm proud to have gotten to take a sneak peek at ColdFusion Builder, the first code centric IDE for ColdFusion put out by the parent company since Homesite! I have to say, it's very cool and very handy. It is built on Eclipse, so one IDE to rule them all. Code generation has been moved out of Flex Builder (now Flash Builder) and integrated into CF Builder. You can connect to CF exposed services right from the IDE, generate AS3 code, start and stop servers and <drumroll>STEP DEBUG</drumroll>. CF Builder also provides code hinting and insight the likes of Flash Builder :). It even supports code refactoring, meaning updating a function name in a CFC will update all references to that function within your project!
I'm pretty excited about this release. I was glad to see the release provides more under the hood performance and functionality than widget-type tags. Go see for yourself:
Now the fun bits:
ColdFusion 9 Public Beta
ColdFusion Builder Public Beta
Developing Applications with ColdFusion 9
ColdFusion 9 CFML Reference
Installation Guide for ColdFusion Builder
Using Adobe ColdFusion Builder