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ColdFusion 8 Developer Tutorial Paperback – 2 Jul 2008

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (2 July 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847194125
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847194121
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.3 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,541,800 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

John started working with computer programming around 1977. He has had the opportunity to work on projects used by Apple, Blue Cross, Brunswick Recreation, Casio, GVSU, Johnson Controls, Sprint, and many others. This history covers over 30 years of knowledge and experience in the industry. He started doing web development over 10 years ago. In the early days of the Web ColdFusion stood out to him not just as a way to make web pages into web applications but as a maturing solid platform good for the developer, site owner, and end users. He started at version 4.5 and has been enjoying each version upgrade more and more. John owns a company called SOSensible. His company does work for large companies but has a special focus on also making sure technology is approachable beyond the enterprise. They have developed a number of Open Source solutions including COOP. COOP is a mix of Custom Tags and CFCs that provides structure while keeping development simpler. It demonstrates his love for the things that make ColdFusion/CFML a delightful language to build websites. He has spoken at national and regional conferences, online meetings, and area user group meetings. He is also an Adobe User Group manager. John knows that community is a viable and productive tool to build developers and the companies they serve. He has learned much from great resources in the community including bloggers, books, conferences, and resources to great in number to mention here. He blogs at for the community.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
You cannot compare this book to the Web Application Construction Kit series as it targets a completely different market. I purchased this book to get a crash course on some of the new AJAX features built into ColdFusion 8. I found it easy to follow and very well thought out. It's a one stop book covering all the basics and some of the more advanced and powerful features in ColdFusion 8.

If you are learning ColdFusion or new to some of the CF8 features I would recommend this book over the Application Construction Kit series simply because it has everything a beginner would need to get started, but even if you're an advanced CF user don't discount this book as it serves as good refresher.

The only negative for me was the very brief mention about Eclipse in `Tools'.
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Format: Paperback
To me this book is printed tutorial as it states on front cover; the writer claims that the book would be beneficial to beginners as well as advanced developers; unfortunately this is not true; as the book does neither targets beginners truly nor advanced programmers; many times the writer drags readers with assumptions of knowing the bits and bytes of the topic; the best way to learn ColdFusion is:

First: Read "Programming ColdFusion MX: Creating Dynamic Web Applications / ISBN-0596003803" to start although it's outdated a bit but it's not bad as start point.

Second: Carry on and upgrade your information and knowledge of the new features in CF8 using ColdFusion 8 Developer Tutorial we are reviewing.
Pros. of the book:
-Well organised and written.
-Referencing all possible related IDEs and software.
-Covers fairly advanced topics and API such as Google Maps.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x8e4736a8) out of 5 stars 8 reviews
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e2eb0a8) out of 5 stars What is a good ColdFusion Book these days? 1 May 2009
By Pablo N. Varando - Published on
Format: Paperback
You know, I read books on ColdFusion all the time (I fly a lot) to stay up to par with things, but mostly to get different perspectives on how people see and use ColdFusion in their own lives. We all have our own perspective and uses; and I like to see how others use it and/or teach it.. (the teach it part intrigues me, because I teach it too.. so i do my best to learn from others and see what works and what doesn't so I can do it better myself).

Recently, I got my hands on a copy of John Farrar's [ColdFusion 8 Developer Tutorial] and I have to say.. I think it's clearly covers a broad range of subjects, but I think what I like the most is that it goes above and beyond most books. He clearly focuses on the readers and does everything possible to get you to get it... (if that makes sense).

I am not one to recommend books, I think tutorials and "demonstrations" work better when it comes to learning things, but I think that this book can teach people quite a bit and really get them to understand and master the coding logic that is needed to become a good developer.

If you have yet to read this book, I suggest you pick up a copy.. It's not only worth the cash.. but will also be a good reference later on.. Lots of Ajax in there too.. which I haven't seen in many other books (other than WACK... but that is another story!).

Overall, I would give this book a 4.5 (out of 5 stars) because it delivers a good range of topics, clear communication, and most importantly it helps with next steps!

Great Job John!
Keep them coming!
10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e2eb0fc) out of 5 stars Very poorly written and extremely disorganized 22 May 2009
By PK - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The author has a very clumsy writing style: indeed, it is difficult to believe that he is a native speaker of English. Even simple concepts are explained so badly that they are difficult to understand:

"You can nest structures inside the structures in addition to actual variable storage containers. It is the first step towards packaging your data inside the application."

He is trying to say that structures can contain other structures, and that this can help to organize data.

Here's another gem:

"Most of the failed web pages come when we start getting interactive."

He is explaining that people sometimes make mistakes when they program in ColdFusion.

Despite all this verbiage, when there is a need to explain something properly, he doesn't bother. For example, it is important to know when to use # in CF. His explanation is:

"This is required for functions to work properly."

Since # is not usually used inside functions - and the example he gives is actually a tag rather than a function - the reader isn't any the wiser.

Here's more:

"Computers see upper case letters differently from lower case letters. So THIS proved the point that strings are case sensitive."

[In English] The function find() searches for sub-strings and is case sensitive.

Note that he doesn't explain what the function find() actually does: indeed, at this point in the book (p.14) he hasn't even introduced functions.

I seriously doubt that anyone could learn anything useful from this book: it's truly dreadful. Even the cover picture makes no sense (cold fusion - i.e., fusion at low temperatures - is supposed to take place at room temperature. It doesn't need ice.) Buy Ben Forta's books, which are more coherent, more accurate and much better written. Or use the manuals which are free to download from

Packt is a publisher to be avoided. I have read another one of their books - Object Oriented JavaScript - and that also had obviously not been properly proof-read.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e881be8) out of 5 stars Wonderful Technical Book 6 Feb. 2010
By Logan - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book has been needed for some time. What I liked best
was that the book did not get too technical. The reader can follow
along. I was a developer that stayed at one level for very long..
and most books were a gigantic leap into so much technical jargon
that I was lost. This book is the next step if you are a cold fusion
developer that knows some of the basics or a developer new to Cold Fusion who catches on very quickly. Thank you!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8ea04a98) out of 5 stars This book has some good tips 21 Oct. 2009
By MBrown - Published on
Format: Paperback
First off, I think some of these reviews were very unfair to this author. Look at the bad reviewers history, they just love to complain. Being an author of ColdFusion books myself I think this book had some really good ideas and some tips I found very useful as a developer. These bad reviewers were most likely people that never had the opportunity to write or can't write to they use this as their outlet.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e2eb534) out of 5 stars Great starting place 5 Dec. 2008
By Jacob Munson - Published on
Format: Paperback
John's book is a good place to start if you are new to ColdFusion. Personally I have been writing ColdFusion for years, so I was reading this book from a review perspective, but it seems like it would be great for beginners. He starts with the very basics, like creating and using variables, and works up to more advanced topics like Ajax. I did find a couple of editing errors, but nothing too serious.
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