Passionate Development From Journeyman to Master

The downside of being a ColdFusion developer in Australia

I've come to this realization, if you are a ColdFusion developer (esp if you're a new to it), you might be disappointed with the reality in Australia.

Working on Legacy Applications

You'll most likely have to work on legacy applications built pre-CFC days (pre 6.1MX). Spaghetti codes abound. Unlike on the other parts of the world, where companies are writing apps in newer CF versions, using frameworks and best practices. This is also my suspicion, I believe in Australia there's a smaller percentage of fresh CF developers compared to UK or US for example, this limits the possibility of being exposed to best practices (my bias is the younger you are, the more tuned to best practices you are -> the younger you are the more likely you are to read books and blogs).

Resistance to OO and Frameworks

Most ColdFusion frameworks are following some OO approaches anyway, so I lump OO and frameworks together.

You'll suggest moving to more OO approach as well as using frameworks, for long term benefits. But this will mean re-write and re-architect the application. Management asks why, the app is working, it does what it does, what's wrong with that?

Even if they are agree in moving to OO and/or frameworks, you'll find these problems:

  1. Not many ColdFusion developers (speaking from the experience of 1 and 8 months working in ColdFusion) know or have used ColdFusion frameworks nor OO before (in fact finding a decent ColdFusion programmer is actually quite hard in Sydney, let alone one that uses frameworks and knows OO).
  2. You want to be mentored by the senior developers or system architect on these areas, but they have no or little experience on them.
  3. There's no framework training available in Australia yet, at least in Sydney. In one of the job interviews that I had this year, I was asked whether I know any Model-Glue training in Australia, obviously this guy is keen getting his developers to work in framework but finding it hard to get his developers trained.

In places like US for example, I think there are little problems with the points above.

We really need new applications written incorporating best practices and what's possible in ColdFusion. We need the legacy applications to be re-vamp. We also need pre CFMX developers to at least be trained in OO (I believe Rocketboots has some courses on this). Only then you can entice fresh blood to come and develop in ColdFusion, or in my case to stay and develop in ColdFusion and not moving to Java, .NET, PHP or even Rails.

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