CFUnited Blog

CFUnited Session and Speaker Feedback

If you went to sessions at CFUnited-10 that were amazing, or ones that sucked or anywhere in between, then let us and the speakers know with this session feedback form. You can use it several times - upto once for each session/speaker you attend. So bookmark this post for use during the rest of the week. It only takes a minute or two to complete and I know both we and our speakers read all your comments in detail to see what is going well and what can be improved.

CF Yoga

Do you bend over your computer all day programming? Do you get stressed out, neck ache, shoulder pain, mouse wrist, back ache?

CF Yoga can help! This will be a 30 minute yoga session that you can do in a chair - so no need for fancy yoga clothes or yoga mat. And you can take these exercises back to your office to do during the day to help keep you relaxed and healthy during the rest of the year.

When: Thursday 11:45am - 12:15pm (after the day two keynote)
Where: Faulkner
(This bonus session is not on the schedule)

Kosher Lunch

If you checked off the Kosher meal when you registered you can find your lunch in room "Potomac A". We only ordered Kosher food for those who requested it, so please don't eat there if you didn't request it, so that there is enough Kosher food for those who need it. Thanks!

Sponsor topic Interview with Charlie Arehart

We wanted to get the ins and outs of our sponsor's, Intergral, topic at CFUnited! See what Charlie has to say about his session and why you should be there!

Tell us a little about yourself:

Greetings folks. I'm Charlie Arehart, independent consultant, and I'll be presenting "Continuously Improve CF code quality, Server Availability & Application Stability". This is a vendor/sponsor session that I'll be giving on behalf of Intergral, makers of FusionReactor, FusionDebug, and the new FusionAnalytics tools. While I don't work for the company, I am a long-time fan and do in fact partner with them in many ways, having written their training classes, which I also present, and also providing consulting for them for North American clients of their service.

Briefly describe what the is session about:

Well, the description on the site says it as well as I could say (since I wrote it). :-) The bottom line focus is how to use their tools (all recently or just about to be updated) to solve the common problems that many CF shops struggle with, whether it's poor performance, inability for CF to stay up, a challenge understanding the root cause of problems, and so on. While there are some tools that some people use to help with these, there are many ways that the Intergral tools offer unique benefits (and can work well with those other tools). Of course many people aren't aware of any tools at all. I'll be showing people how they can stop regarding CF as a black box that's either up or down. Perhaps most compelling, I'll show how they can more effectively analyze and compare server performance information across applications and over hours, days, weeks, months, and years.

Who should attend this session?

Really, anyone with responsibility for--or simply an interest in--effective running of their CF servers (or other CFML engines, or indeed other Java EE servers). There's no particular skill level required to understand what these tools can do. Indeed, even someone with little CF skill (whether a server Admin or a newcomer to CF) can quickly use these tools to show (even a more skilled person) what's going on in their servers, which is a vital first step to resolving problems.

Why did you choose to give this topic?

Well, again, this is a vendor/sponsor topic, so naturally the intention is to make people aware of the products and services from the company. But we all know that most people don't like "sales pitches". Hopefully I've earned a reputation (as an independent consultant) for being an objective observer. Since I'm not an employee, I really am "promoting" these tools because I believe they are valuable and that more people should know about them. Intergral was happy to have me present, because like so many great IT companies, they have great engineers who are awesome at building products (and listening to customers); yet like the average person, they not exactly thrilled by the prospect of speaking before hundreds of people! :-) I love doing it and have been for over 20 years.

How will conference attendees benefit from attending this session?

The primary benefit will be that attendees will learn new tools and techniques for solving common problems that face nearly every CF shop (and those using other CFML and Java EE engines). But again the focus isn't on "features" but rather on ways that problems can be solved. The session will benefit both those who have never seen the tools before, and those who maybe have worked with or at least heard of them before. Especially for the latter audience, there will be new information as the tools have been updated (FusionDebug recently, and FusionReactor soon, and FusionAnalytics is entirely new.) For those who've never seen the tools or any like them, they'll be exposed to the amazing capabilities that they bring to solving problems. And those who may be familiar with other similar solutions (though there's none like FusionAnalytics) will learn some of the ways that the Intergral products do offer unique features/solutions.

When is the session being held?

The session is on the first day, in the first slot after the Adobe Keynote (and break), at 11 am.

Why should people attend CFUnited?

Well, I've been spreading the good news of CFUnited since its inception over 10 years ago, first in a CFDJ article in 2000, and most recently in the farewell interview I did with Michael Smith and Judith Dinowitz in FusionAuthority. As a speaker at every one of the events (along with Michael), I can say it's been a conference that people have gotten great value from every year. Just as there are many tools to solve problems, and I recommend that people make the most of each, I say the same of conferences. Sure, some have their preferences (in tools and conferences, perhaps sticking only with one), but just like a large toolset can bring value to anyone, so too can a wide-ranging conference like CFUnited bring value to everyone who attends.

Whether you're a newcomer to CF or an old hand, an expert in OO technologies or still on the fence, someone who loves to meet people or prefers to just take in the content, you will not only be at home and welcomed at the event, but you'll likely find many other "birds of a feather". Speaking of BOFs, I should add that I'll be doing one called CF911 - Server Troubleshooting, which of course will cover a wide range of tools (free and commercial), techniques (from myself and I hope others), and experiences. As I'll discuss in my keynote talk on CFCommunity, we need to stick together and learn from each other! :-) CFUnited is a great place to do that.

Doug Hughes on why CFUnited and Alagad TaskForce

Well known CF speaker Doug Hughes gives some great reasons to come to the final CFUnited including meeting feakin' smart CFers, networking, backup job hunting,recruiting and the latest news from Adobe.

While I was checking out Doug's comments I noticed that his company Alagad just announced a new service called TaskForce. TaskForce is a pre-paid on-demand elastic application development service. If you are the victim of "Drive By Programming" and recently lost a resource then this might be for you. You get a block of hours per month and there is roll over if you don't use all of them. Pretty cool.

Evening Events at CFUnited

We are excited to announce our evenings events for this year's CFUnited:

On Wednesday night, from 7-9 pm, we are hosting a networking reception event in the Ballroom Foyer. Our reception is the most opportune time to meet and greet with our wonderful speakers and sponsors and of course, our attendees. Make sure you bring plenty of business cards! And don't worry, we will have a bar and passed hors d'oeuvres such as buffalo chicken skewers, vegetable spring rolls and curried wonton shrimp! yum!!

On Thursday night, Adobe will be hosting their Pool Party from 7:30 - 10:00 pm. Take a dip in any of the three refreshing and super awesome pools at the Lansdowne Resort. You may also enjoy the scrumptious cajun seasoned french fries (yes, we're bringing them back), chicken cashew spring rolls, roasted mushroom fritters and glamorous deserts! Make sure you bring your bathing suits!!

On Friday, our last night, the Lansdowne Resort will have a fabulous concert, as part of their Sounds of Summer Concert Series. To our luck, this week's band is The Reflex, an ultimate 80s tribute band! Cara and I will be rocking out in our leg warmers and cut off t-shirts - it's going to be rad, totally.

If you are already registered, but would like your spouse to take part in these awesome fabulous events, check out our packages for a guest pass!

Last early bird ends today

Hi everyone!!

Today is the last day to register with Early Bird Pricing. Also, due to many requests from folks who have found themselves unemployed in this recession and still want to attend we have created a special discount for them. We want everyone to have an opportunity to make it out this for the last CFUnited!

As always, if you are eligible for a discount, please contact info (at) cfunited (dot) com.

Check out our Prices page for more information.

Make sure you register today!!!


Who's been keeping up with their schedules lately??

Well....if you haven't noticed, some of the Saturday repeat sessions were posted some time ago, but I didn't want to announce it until it was full!

So yes, you can now see the Saturday schedule!! It consists of our most popular sessions from this year's CFUnited (yes, I can predict the future).

Also, there have been a few switches to the schedule for the week. If this has affected your scheduling, make sure you fix it so that you're all set.

So far, the most popular session has about 125 attendees, which is nowhere close to being even half of the attendees registered!! Come on people! I know you can do better than this.

Make sure you are adding your favorite topics to the scheduler. We base the room selections on attendees that schedule the topics. So make sure you save yourself a seat by adding your topics in!!

Memories of CFUnited from years past

As the final CFUnited is only 15 days away I want to share some memories from the last 12 years of CFUnited and CFUN. If you have some special memories please share them here too!

The first one in 1999, DCCFUC'99 ColdFusion User Conference, I remember staying up to 2 or 3 am coding the website, emailing about the event and phoning the Dinowitzes who seemed to be up at all hours too. Come the day seeing 900 CFer filling (and overfilling) the room at NIH was amazing. I was feeling nauseous as I got on the stage to speak - I had only spoken at smaller user group meetings before - but after a few minutes I just felt the rush and excitement. Thought I do recall drinking a few beers that night to recover!

We changed the name to CFUN-2K the next year (CFUC-2K seemed a bit too naughty a name!) and that was the last year at NIH with 9/11 happening and security clamping down there. We moved to a local Holiday Inn and I remember trying to walk in the corridor at CFUN-04 in a sea of people going passed the vendor booths. It was time to find a larger location.

In '05 CFDynamics, New Atlanta and other advisory board members helped us upsize the event to be CFUnited-05 - new branding, new website, new location in Bethesda. We also opened up the speaker selection with the board too. The event was fun with Simon Horwith organizing a dunk the CF speaker for charity booth. And some local CFers who were in a band playing rock music into the night. And so many more speakers, including a memorable keynote from Joel Spolsky and a new gold sponsor Microsoft. Plus the Host My Site waiters serving bottled water in white suits.

We stayed in Bethesda for a few years before trying DC convention center - not my best idea as the event was lost in the enormous space. But the Steve Nelson cream pie fight in the hotel parking lot was a blast to watch!

Back to the suburbs, this time Virginia near Dulles airport - easier for the 50%+ of attendees who come from outside the DC metro area to get to. And what a nice location with pools, spa and golf courses. But most important finally a hotel that could deliver wifi that worked most of the time in the large rooms!

So what are your CFUN memories?

Previous CFUnited and CFUN photos wanted

Adobe is putting together a slide show of photos from CFUnited and CFUN events over the past 12 years. I have given them all the photos I have. If you have any memorable photos email them to me michael (at) teratech (dot) com with subject line "CFUnited Photos" and I will pass them one. The deadline is this Thursday 7/15/10.

And if you haven't checked out the Flickr collection of CFUnited photos there are some cool ones there too. (It would be cool to upload your CFUnited-10 pix during the event!) Thanks

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