Wednesday 13 March 2013

Here's a Question

I just saw a status update on Twitter of someone mentioning a client of theirs was moving to Railo after being impressed with Railo 4, and underwhelmed by ColdFusion 10. I have to say I think their judgement is off a bit there (ie: I think CF10 is more impressive than Railo 4... that said they're both good products, and I don't mean to take anything away from Railo when I say that), but fair enough: I'm not privy to their requirements and what's important to them so I can't really comment intelligently on the basis for their decision.

That said, I certainly think for one of the CF9 environments I have dealings with that migrating to Railo 4 would make more sense than upgrading to CF10, when it comes to moving from CF9. The difference here is that the codebase is pretty "vanilla", and doesn't use any of interesting features even CF9 offers, let alone likely to leverage any of the similar new features in CF10. If I was commencing a new project - and I didn't need to pay for the licences -  I'd be using ColdFusion 10 over Railo, though.

Anyway: I digress. The point there's another migration from ColdFusion to Railo. This is becoming a story I hear more and more often.

I'm hearing from a lot of CF "pundits" and other community members about how Railo is putting a lot of effort into being more impressive than ColdFusion. It has made a lot of language innovations, whilst doing its best to stay cross-compatible with CF. It has superior app server features (per site admin, a reliable updater, plug-in manager etc). It has responsive support and engineering meaning issues get dealt with, and if they don't one can talk to the engineers and find out why they might have decided something isn't a bug, or they're just not going to fix it. Hey, it's OSS, so if you want to make yer own fork and fix stuff yerself, you can. All good.

But here's the question. What is Adobe doing to counter any of this? It seems to be "f*** all" to me.

I realise Railo is pretty small, and it probably doesn't really worry Adobe as far as eroding its licence base, so perhaps they don't take Railo's inroads into CFML and winning over elements of the community seriously. That might be it. However here's the thing... everything Railo is doing to stand out from ColdFusion is good stuff. So why aren't Adobe at least doing the same thing, simply because it's good stuff that people like, and what's more a lot of it is tried and true in the community?

It's a bit bloody stupid that they're not... well... trying to copy Railo. Isn't it?