Thursday 10 October 2013

ColdFusion: Why weI fight

G'day, and apologies to Frank Capra for trivialising his work.

An alternative title for this article could be "Readers: can't live with 'em... can't kill 'em". But I liked the Capra allusion which popped into my head initially, even if it does self-aggrandise what I do here "somewhat".

Can I please remind you lot of something. At the top right of the page you are reading, second paragraph, it says this:
I tend to be a bit "forthright": I think CF is a good product, but I won't blindly defend it in all circumstances, and I have been quite critical of ColdFusion and Adobe at times. This will come out occasionally here: I make no apology for it.
It says that on every page of the blog. And I put it there on every page for a reason.

First: a digression. The back story of this blog - and the gist of the title - is this.

I have been in the ColdFusion community since about 2001 (working with CF since 2000, but was unaware of the community at the time). I have enjoyed reading the various blogs that have come and gone, but they all and one common thread: they were always - or at least almost always - never in the slightest bit critical or questioning of what Macromedia / Adobe were doing with ColdFusion. The general approach of the CF community seemed to be blind adulation, matter-of-fact stick to examples of how the code worked, or stony silence when something was a bit rubbish. No-one ever seemed to go "Oi, WTF is going on with this?"

I had been thinking about starting a blog for a number of years, but for a while I was suffering from imposter syndrome, and thought I'd probably only have enough material for about half a dozen posts, and then run out of steam. Plus it would simply not be of any benefit to the community. Plus I have the attention span of a goldfish, and lose interest in stuff fairly quickly.

But whenever it was - a year or so ago - I decided, screw it... I'm fed-up with where Adobe is taking this community (or more to the point: I'm fed up with that the community seems to be sleeping through this happening), and I perhaps do have an interesting alternative spin on what's going on in the CFML world, so I'll write it down. My position has always been to question what's going on, rather than just sit idly by watching it but not saying anything because I'm too darn polite (like an awful lot of people seem to be). The raison d'ĂȘtre for this blog is kinda "well someone's gotta say something".

I am a firm believer that if you sit around allowing shit to happen around you without doing something about it, then you are doing a disservice to your environment. And I make no apology for it.

Occasionally I will observe poor performance from Adobe (or Adobe team members), or Railo, or someone else, and if I think they're being unprofessional or otherwise letting down the community by their actions (or lack thereof), then I will "out" them. I will mention it here, and I will make my observations as to why it's poor form. So, yes, sometimes I will see what - in my opinion (which is, after all, entirely what a blog is) - is slack or unprofessional behaviour. And as I am not a mealy-mouthed sycophant, I will call it for what it is. I hasten to add that this is seldom a "flying off at the handle" exercise, it's borne out of being in the IT industry for over 20 years, and knowing slack-arseness when I see it. But I also do my research and make what I think is an informed assessment of the situation, and then comment on it.

Occasionally I get this wrong, and when I do I apologise. However it is seldom that having had cause to reassess a situation that my findings change. And I do take efforts to be as objective as possible about this.

But... do you know what? I am finding that my approach to things seems to be working out at least all right. Someone's said "you catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar" (to which I think, "cheers next time I'm catching flies, I'll remember that. Weirdo"), but I think it's more a case of "the squeaky wheel gets the oil". Or I think platitudes like that are just intellectually lazy. The thing is, if one raises an issue, comments at it, and doesn't just put up with stuff: things get done. Over the years I have had moderate success getting things addressed, sorted out, implemented or fixed. Also my banging away at stuff gets it onto other people's radar, so they are at least aware of [issues], but it also encourages other people to stand-up and be counted as well. This is a good thing. Sitting around like a wallflower because you think it's impolite to voice a negative opinion just makes you baggage.

But, anyway, yeah: I'm blunt. I make no apology. And anyone coming here knows this.

So - given all that being plain as day - if you come moaning to me in a comment on here that I'm being a big meany and you don't like it? Well... um... f*** off. No-one's making you read this. And it's no odds to me if you do or don't.

Also, how frickin' adolescent is it to decide you don't like something, and somehow that's supposed to be my problem? It's not. This blog does what it says on the wrapper, and - like I said - the "wrapper" is right there on every page, so if you read it and have a problem with it, then that's your problem to deal with, not mine. Grow - the f*** - up.

I'm completely fine with people making any comment in my direction that they like. I'm a big boy, and there's absolutely nothing you could say that will offend me. But if you're just going to whine like a school girl, I'll just treat you with the contempt you deserve.

Aaah... that was cathartic.