Do you lament that CF training sources seem to be dated? While that may be true for some resources, it’s not for all. There is far more available than I think most people realize.
I was asked today for help by someone who was looking for training for CF and who lamented that all the resources they found were “at least a couple years old”. I understood where they were coming from.
But here’s good news: first, while CF has certainly evolved (in many good ways), some topics are just as well served by older resources as newer ones. Second, there may be many more free CF training resources than you realize, and some may be more recent than you expect–indeed as current as CF2018, with others written for CF2016, or still others for CF11, and so on.
And some are meant for beginners, while others are meant for those wanting to expand their knowledge. Bottom line, there’s something for about everyone.
In this post, I elaborate on both points.
How CF has and has not changed
While CF has indeed changed in various ways with each release (CF2018, CF2016, CF11, and so on), the fundamentals have really not CHANGED. But don’t read that as me saying CF is old and stale. Far from it. I just mean that what may seem to some to be “newer” facets of CF development are indeed at least “a couple years old”, and so could be covered in training resources that may seem to some to be “dated”.
For instance, the ability to write entirely in cfscript (if that’s your style) has been there since CF11 (from 2014), which addresses a key concern of those who come from another script-oriented language, or simply “hate tags in code”. There are training (and of course CF doc) resources that show that. CF11 also introduced member functions, and both CF2016 and 2018 have evolved that still more–and there are resources that show using that.
And of course CFCs (to support OO-style development) have been there since CF6 (2001). That said, CF2018 (and other releases) have added more and more features that aid in OO-style development. There are resources that show that.
It was CF 10 (2012) that added REST support, and that too evolved in CF11 and on, and CF2018 adds the new REST playground. So sure, a training resource on CF REST development may not cover the playground if not updated, but most else that such an “older” resource on CF REST covered would apply today.
I could go on.
And by the same token, code written years ago generally still runs in later versions. The point is CF has indeed evolved, but even “older” resources are likely to be as applicable today, whether a “couple” or a “few” or even “several” years old.
Several available free CF training resources
Second, I offered her several training resources (of various forms) and assessed briefly whether each was really “all that dated”, and as I suspect some readers here may not be familiar with them all, I thought I would share them here also.
They can meet the needs of either absolute beginners, or those with some years of experience (but wanting to increase their skills), and they’re all free.
- First, for those really just starting out (the case of the person asking me), did you know Adobe offers for free a several hour video course introducing CF? (It’s labelled as an introduction to CF2016, but it’s really an intro to CF–not 2016 itself, so it would work for one still running on CF11 or earlier as well, and even Lucee). The videos are free on youtube:https://coldfusion.adobe.com/2016/03/new-coldfusion-training-videos-available/
- And perhaps you know about http://learncfinaweek.com, but if not, it’s been a wonderful help to many for years. That said, it has indeed not changed much since CF10, but the folks behind it are gearing up for an update. Even so, again, nearly everything taught there (circa 2012) would apply to even use of CF2018.
- And did you know that Adobe offers thousands of pages of documentation of CF, including a couple thousand in the Developing CF Apps manual? See my post:https://coldfusion.adobe.com/2017/11/did-you-know-theres-far-more-to-the-cf-docs-than-just-the-cfml-reference/That Dev manual covers nearly everything one would need to know, and unlike the reference, it’s meant to “teach”, not be just a reference. If everyone asking a question on the web would reach the chapter or even section on that topic (sometimes dozens of pages on the most specific of topics), the world would be a better place.
- Back to bare beginners, Adobe also has a “getting started guide” for CF, which would be 15 pages if printed:https://helpx.adobe.com/coldfusion/getting-started-coldfusion.html
- Finally, I also keep track of these and other such resources as categories in my cf411.com site, where I have ones on training, docs, books, resources, and more:http://www.cf411.com/cftrainingfree
I’d think if one pursued even just a few of those, they’d find that they have all they need and more, for free, and indeed in various formats (docs, guides, tutorials, videos, and more), to satisfy about any learning experience desired, to become a much better (or new) CF developer.
But let me know what you think.