I’ve had about a week to process the information avalanche I experienced at Devcon. I took a lot away from the conference. Much of it was technical in nature, coding techniques, the use of the new technology in ColdFusion MX and Flash MX. Some of it was soft information, and relationships with incredibly smart people I would never have met otherwise. I would say, however, that the one thing that will stick with me the most is the concept of Rich Internet Applications. That is Macromedia’s term, not mine. In my mind, what this is really is the natural evolution of Internet technology in a way that it now supports true client server type interaction. Now I should say, before you start sending me email that says I am wrong about this and that it is possible to create client serverish interactions using the DOM and DHTML, I know about that stuff. I know it really well because I have been working on the browser based rewrite of a manufacturing ERP system for the last six months. There are a ton of limitations doing this stuff with DHTML, not the least of which is that HTML based UI’s just are not the best way to visually display some kinds of information, or the best way for users to interact with that information. Flash and Flash Remoting will give us the ability to do much of this stuff in an easier way. Cold Fusion Components will allow us to create objects with methods that are reusable, and this will lead to a more object oriented approach to our system development. I just wish we were using the MX platform now as I struggle with the creation of a manufacturing item creation interface. So that’s what I took away in a nutshell.
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