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On ColdFusion and Flex
What Flex can do for you

Macromedia Flex is a brand new server product, one that is poised to forever change the way we coders think about building rich and engaging user interfaces.

Yes, I did say "server." No, Flex does not compete with ColdFusion. Yes, Flex and ColdFusion are designed to work together.

Having now dispensed with the obligatory preliminaries, I'd like to present Macromedia Flex to the ColdFusion audience from a distinctly ColdFusion angle. And so this month I will:

  • Explain exactly what Flex is, from a ColdFusion user's perspective.
  • Discuss the ColdFusion/Flex relationship.
So, What Exactly Is Flex?
The best way to understand Flex is to think about how you build Web applications right now. If you are a ColdFusion developer (or a developer who uses ASP, JSP, PHP, and the like) you probably build applications comprised of lots of linked pages. These pages contain client code (at a minimum, HTML and JavaScript) as well as server-side code (CFML, SQL, and so forth). You probably try to separate content (or back-end data) from presentation (the front-end UI), but you still use both to create your application.

So, in the case of a ColdFusion page, a browser requests a CFML file, ColdFusion parses and processes the CFML in that file, and then returns client code to the browser. The browser renders the client code on the client, but it is ColdFusion on the server that embeds that client code in the page. Put differently, ColdFusion is a server that dynamically generates client-side code.

So why all this analysis? Simply put, Flex works in much the same way. Whereas ColdFusion (despite being somewhat client independent and agnostic) generates client-side HTML, Flex generates client-side Macromedia Flash SWF files. Perhaps that's a bit too simplistic, but the analogy is sound: ColdFusion uses plain text files containing CFML tags to render browser content, and Flex uses text files containing MXML tags to render Macromedia Flash content. Compare the flows of both processes in Figures 1 and 2.

But that is where the similarities end. Unlike ColdFusion, Flex and its language, MXML, do not provide tags for database integration, sending and receiving e-mail, connecting to LDAP servers, or creating Web services. Whereas ColdFusion is more of an all-purpose application development platform, Flex has a far more focused objective and a very specific goal. Flex is designed to facilitate the creation of rich and engaging presentation layers, letting developers create well designed and optimally architected n-tier applications that adhere to standards and best practices. With Flex, coders can take advantage of the ubiquitous Flash platform from a very code-centric starting point, but what Flex generates is still Flash content. In other words, Flex is all about presentation and user interaction, and that's it.

Flex is actually similar to ColdFusion in one other way. Flex, like ColdFusion, is a Java application. Flex is deployed on top of standard J2EE servers, such as Macromedia JRun, IBM WebSphere, and so forth, in much the same way that you deploy ColdFusion, but more on that soon.

All of the previous discussion means that Flex does not compete with ColdFusion; rather, Flex needs ColdFusion (or Java, or .NET, or something, anything, providing back-end integration). A Flex application needs a back end, and that back end can indeed be ColdFusion (as in Figure 2).

How do ColdFusion and Flex interact? The answer is that it depends. There are two distinct ways to go about using them together.

ColdFusion As a Flex Back End
So, Flex developers write MXML code to render user interfaces, and rely on external systems for any and all transactions, business logic, and back-end processing. How does Flex access these external systems? Flex provides tags that developers can use to:

  • Invoke Web services
  • Make HTTP requests
  • Call remote Java objects
It is worth noting that Flex itself does not really invoke Web services or make HTTP calls or call remote Java objects; Flash does that (possibly via a server-side Flex proxy). Flex generates a complete Flash application - a SWF file that runs in Macromedia Flash player - that makes all the back-end calls.

At this point, ColdFusion/Flash integration becomes obvious, Flex calls ColdFusion pages via HTTP requests, or invokes ColdFusion components (CFCs) as Web services. You can use any ColdFusion code that you can invoke through HTTP or as a Web service within Flex applications. To do this, you don't even have to have ColdFusion installed on the same server as Flex, although that configuration works too.

In Figure 3, the flow works something like this:

  1. A user requests a Flex MXML URL.
  2. Flex generates a SWF, which it sends to the user.
  3. The user's Flash player executes the SWF.
  4. The SWF makes HTTP or Web service calls from the player and obtains data.
  5. The Flex-generated SWF uses that data on the user's machine.
This type of integration delivers true n-tier applications, and is best suited for actual applications rather than embedded controls, for example.

This integration is also ideal for applications with multiple presentation layers. For example, if you needed a straight HTML version of your application in addition to the more engaging Flex version, you could simply provide multiple presentation interfaces to your back-end code. You would put your application logic, without any UI at all, in ColdFusion components; CFML pages would invoke the CFCs and render the HTML version of the application; and Flex MXML pages would render the Flash version of the application. The bonus is that both use the same back-end code.

ColdFusion-Generated Flex
Earlier I compared ColdFusion rendering client-side HTML to Flex rendering client-side Flash. But the integration just explained is not really the same. When ColdFusion renders client-side HTML, for example, the CFML pages programmatically render the HTML, perhaps even embedding dynamic data at the same time. This is quite different from the integration described in the "ColdFusion as a Flex Back End," section where ColdFusion does not generate client-side Flash, it simply provides data to Flash, generated by Flex.

Can you use ColdFusion to dynamically generate Flash apps in much the same way as it can HTML? Yes, you can, through the Flex JSP Tag Library interface. Flex comes with JSP tags that you can use inside of JSP pages. JSP tags are much like CFML tags, except that they are written in JSP instead of in CFML. With Flex JSP tags, developers programmatically embed Flex tags such as the Tree tags or the Grid tag in their JSP pages so that when a user requests a JSP URL, the generated page has Flash embedded within it.

How does this help ColdFusion developers? ColdFusion code can call JSP tags too. CFML has a tag named <CFIMPORT> that developers use to import or include JSP tags; once imported, developers can use these tags like any other ColdFusion tag.

To be able to do this, ColdFusion and Flex must be installed on the same J2EE server. While this installation process is not terribly difficult, it's a manual process. This obviously requires ColdFusion Enterprise, and will not work with a Standalone ColdFusion installation, since the Standalone ColdFusion installation does not expose a J2EE server that could run Flex.

Figure 4 shows the workflow:

  1. A user requests a ColdFusion CFML URL.
  2. ColdFusion imports the Flex JSP tags.
  3. ColdFusion generates a page, which contains both HTML and a Flex-generated SWF, which it sends to the client.
  4. The page displays in the user's browser; an embedded SWF executes in the user's Flash player.
This type of integration is best for dynamically generated content, such as a dynamically generated and populated tree control. This type of integration is less suitable for full-blown applications.

Where to Use Flex
ColdFusion developers can think of Flex as being a replacement or an extension for the parts of the application that they'd have written in HTML, JavaScript, DHTML, and so forth. But that does not mean that you should write every HTML application in Flex. In fact, while some applications are great potential Flex candidates, others are decidedly not.

  • Flex is not intended to be used to replace specific form controls. For example, if you have an HTML form and use a pop-up calendar, do not replace the calendar with Flex code. The cost, the overhead, the bandwidth usage - none of those factors would make Flex an efficient option. Using Flex for whole parts of a form probably does not make sense. However, if you have a complex multipart form with lots of screens, form controls, and dynamic elements, then yes, Flex could be a good candidate.
  • Applications involving raw reporting, data browsing, or working with large amounts of data - where the emphasis is less on the presentation and more on raw content - are also not Flex's sweet spot. While Flex provides controls, such as the data grid, that you can use within these applications, the overhead, performance, and amount of coding needed may not be a fit for Flex.
  • Flex is not designed to replace Flash. If you use Flash for complex animation or sophisticated design work, you'll still use Flash.
  • Where Flex shines is in rich presentation of information, with an emphasis on "rich." Dashboard type applications are perfect for Flex, as are innovative ways to display and interact with specific data, such as shopping carts.

    Of course, these are high-level generalizations, and there is no hard-and-fast rule here. The key is that Flex empowers developers to build rich and highly interactive user experiences. It is best suited for applications where this type of interaction is a requirement and where the project plan can accommodate the overhead associated with this type of experience.

    In case I did not state this clearly enough, Flex does not replace Flash. In fact, almost anything that can be done in Flex can be done in Flash too; the major difference is the development model (including code management, the use of design patterns and best practices, team development, versioning and editioning, and more). As a Macromedia developer, you now have one more weapon in your arsenal.

    Where to Go from Here
    To learn more about Flex, and to obtain a copy of the Developer Edition, visit www.macromedia.com/software/flex/. Also visit www.macromedia.com/devnet/flex/ for articles, columns, and example applications (including ColdFusion-related content).

    In addition to overviews, positioning, and technical content, you'll also find practical and honest discussions on Flex itself to help you determine if it is right for you and your projects. Macromedia wants to help you build a better user experience, and that may involve Flash, it may involve Flex, and it may involve both. Whatever it is, we'll help you get there.

    Conclusion
    Flex empowers code-oriented developers, allowing us to build rich and engaging user experiences using development models and principals that we can understand and relate to. Flex is new, and still evolving, but even now it can have a dramatic impact on your development, both what you develop, and how. Flex may be right for your project, and it may not, but either way it pays to have a basic understanding of what this new technology is, and of what it can do for you.

  • About Ben Forta
    Ben Forta is Adobe's Senior Technical Evangelist. In that capacity he spends a considerable amount of time talking and writing about Adobe products (with an emphasis on ColdFusion and Flex), and providing feedback to help shape the future direction of the products. By the way, if you are not yet a ColdFusion user, you should be. It is an incredible product, and is truly deserving of all the praise it has been receiving. In a prior life he was a ColdFusion customer (he wrote one of the first large high visibility web sites using the product) and was so impressed he ended up working for the company that created it (Allaire). Ben is also the author of books on ColdFusion, SQL, Windows 2000, JSP, WAP, Regular Expressions, and more. Before joining Adobe (well, Allaire actually, and then Macromedia and Allaire merged, and then Adobe bought Macromedia) he helped found a company called Car.com which provides automotive services (buy a car, sell a car, etc) over the Web. Car.com (including Stoneage) is one of the largest automotive web sites out there, was written entirely in ColdFusion, and is now owned by Auto-By-Tel.

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    Reader Feedback: Page 1 of 1

    Charlie,

    As per the FAQ at http://www.macromedia.com/software/flex/productinfo/faq/ ...

    The Flex Trial CD is available for purchase on the macromedia.com online store. The trial CD costs $8.99 to cover shipping and handling expenses.

    The Flex trial runs in evaluation mode for the first 60 days after installation. It provides full features and no limits on IP addresses hitting the server. The trial in evaluation mode is licensed for development and testing only. After 60 days, the trial automatically converts to developer mode. Developer mode never times out but is limited to five named IP addresses hitting the server and is licensed for development and testing on individual developer workstations only. Additionally, SWF files compiled in developer mode time out after one day. Organizations that want to set up a shared development server for quality assurance or integration testing should purchase a commercial Flex license.

    Mitchiru,

    Flex does not replace Flash Remoting. Flash remoting is a data transport layer, and Flex can use it (as it can SOAP) to communicate between client and server.

    --- Ben

    do you think, flex could replace flash remoting? is flex able to work like flash remoting with genuine flashfiles?

    Ben, great article. Really helps to clear any confusion about Flex with regard to CFML and Flash. One thing: you say we can "obtain a copy of the Developer Edition", but the link offered shows only and available trial edition, and that''s only offered by way of buying the CD for 8.99 (a small price, admittedly). Just confirming: is that trial edition the only thing we can get now, and was your referring to it as a Developer edition mean that it (like CF and JRun) becomes a limited in after 30 days?


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    Gemini is Yahoo’s native and search advertising platform. To ensure the quality of a complex distributed system that spans multiple products and components and across various desktop websites and mobile app and web experiences – both Yahoo owned and operated and third-party syndication (supply), with complex interaction with more than a billion users and numerous advertisers globally (demand) – it becomes imperative to automate a set of end-to-end tests 24x7 to detect bugs and regression. In th...
    "MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
    "There's plenty of bandwidth out there but it's never in the right place. So what Cedexis does is uses data to work out the best pathways to get data from the origin to the person who wants to get it," explained Simon Jones, Evangelist and Head of Marketing at Cedexis, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.

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    Sponsorship opportunities are now open for Internet of Things at Cloud Expo 2018 New York, taking place June 5-7, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, and Internet of Things at Cloud Expo 2018 Silicon Valley, November 6-8, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For sponsorship, exhibit opportunities and show prospectus, please contact Carmen Gonzalez, carmen (at) sys-con.com.



    @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley All-Star Speakers Include

    MATTHIEU
    Octoblu

    MAHADEV
    Cisco

    MCCARTHY
    Bsquare

    FELICIANO
    AMDG

    PAUL
    VenueNext

    SMITH
    Eviot

    BEAMER
    goTraverse

    GETTENS
    goTraverse

    CHAMBLISS
    ReadyTalk

    HERBERTS
    Cityzen Data

    REITBAUER
    Dynatrace

    WILLIAM-
    SON

    Cloud
    Computing

    SCHMARZO
    EMC

    WOOD
    VeloCloud

    WALLGREN
    Electric Cloud

    VARAN-
    NATH

    GE

    SRIDHARA-
    BALAN

    Pulzze

    METRIC
    Linux

    MONTES
    Iced

    ARIOLA
    Parasoft

    HOLT
    Daitan

    CUNNING-
    HAM

    ReadyTalk

    BEDRO-
    SIAN

    Cypress

    NAMIE
    Cisco

    NAKA-
    GAWA

    Transparent
    Cloud

    SHIBATA
    Transparent
    Cloud

    BOYD
    Neo4j

    VANDER-
    MINDEN

    Flatiron
    Strategies

    JAME-
    NSKY

    Embotics

    KOCHER
    Grey Heron

    SPROULE
    Metavine

    BLACK
    SQLstream

    WARD
    DWE

    MILLER
    Covisint

    EVAVOLD
    Covisint

    MEINER
    Oracle

    MEEHAN
    Esri

    WITECK
    Citrix

    LIANG
    Rancher Labs

    BUTLER
    Tego

    ROWE
    IBM Cloud

    SKILLERN
    Intel

    SMITH
    Numerex
    @ThingsExpo New York All-Star Speakers Include

    CLELAND
    HGST

    VASILIOU
    Catchpoint

    WALLGREN
    Electric Cloud

    HINCH-
    CLIFFE

    7Summits

    DE SOUZA
    Cisco

    RANDALL
    Gartner

    ARMSTRONG
    AppNeta

    SMALLTREE
    Cazena

    MCCARTHY
    Bsquare

    DELOACH
    Infobright

    QUINT
    Ontegrity

    MALAUCHLAN
    Buddy Platform

    PALIOTTA
    Vector

    MITRA
    Cognizant

    KOCHER
    Grey Heron

    PAPDO
    POULOS

    Cloud9

    HARLAN
    Two Bulls

    GOLO
    SHUBIN

    Bit6

    PROIETTI
    Location
    Smart

    MARTIN
    nfrastructure

    MOULINE
    Everbridge

    MARSH
    Blue Pillar

    PARKS
    SecureRF

    PEROTTI
    Plantronics

    HOFFMAN
    EastBanc

    WATSON
    Trendalyze

    BENSONOFF
    Unigma

    SHAN
    CTS

    MATTELA
    Redpine

    GILLEN
    Spark
    Coginition

    SOLT
    Netvibes

    BERNARDO
    GE Digital

    ROMANSKY
    TrustPoint

    BEAMER
    GoTransverse

    LESTER
    LogMeIn

    PONO
    -MAREVA

    Google

    SINGH
    Sencha

    CALKINS
    Amadeus

    KLEIN
    Rachio

    HOASIN
    Aeris

    SARKARIA
    PHEMI

    SPROULE
    Metavine

    SNELL
    Intel

    LEVINE
    CytexOne

    ALLEN
    Freewave

    MCCALLUM
    Falconstor

    HYEDT
    Seamless

    @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley All-Star Speakers Include

    SCHULZ
    Luxoft

    TAMBURINI
    Autodesk

    MCCARTHY
    Bsquare

    THURAI
    SaneIoT

    TURNER
    Cloudian

    ENDO
    Intrepid

    NAKAGAWA
    Transparent

    SHIBATA
    Transparent

    LEVANT-LEVI
    testRTC

    VARAN NATH
    GE

    COOPER
    M2Mi

    SENAY
    Teletax

    SKEEN
    Vitria

    KOCHER
    Grey Heron

    GREENE
    PubNub

    MAGUIRE
    HP

    MATTHIEU
    Octoblu

    STEINER-JOVIC
    AweSense

    LYNN
    AgilData

    HEDGES
    Cloudata

    DUFOUR
    Webroot

    ROBERTS
    Platform

    JONES
    Deep

    PFEIFFER
    NICTA

    NIELSEN
    Redis

    PAOLALANTORIO
    DataArchon

    KAHN
    Solgenia

    LOPEZ
    Kurento

    KIM
    MapR

    BROMHEAD
    Instaclustr

    LEVINE
    CytexOne

    BONIFAZI
    Solgenia

    GORBACHEV
    Intelligent
    Systems

    THYKATTIL
    Navisite

    TRELOAR
    Bebaio

    SIVARAMA-
    KRISHNAN

    Red Hat
    Cloud Expo New York All-Star Speakers Included

    DE SOUZA
    Cisco

    POTTER
    SafeLogic

    ROBINSON
    CompTIA

    WARUSA
    -WITHANA

    WSO2 Inc

    MEINER
    Oracle

    CHOU
    Microsoft

    HARRISON
    Tufin

    BRUNOZZI
    VMware

    KIM
    MapR

    KANE
    Dyn

    SICULAR
    Basho

    TURNER
    Cloudian

    KUMAR
    Liaison

    ADAMIAK
    Liaison

    KHAN
    Solgenia

    BONIFAZI
    Solgenia

    SUSSMAN
    Coalfire

    ISAACSON
    RMS

    LYNN
    CodeFutures

    HEABERLIN
    Windstream

    RAMA
    MURTHY

    Virtusa

    BOSTOCK
    IndependenceIT

    DE MENO
    CommVault

    GRILLI
    Adobe

    WILLIAMS
    Rancher Labs

    CRISWELL
    Alert Logic

    COTY
    Alert Logic

    JACOBS
    SingleHop

    MARAVEI
    Cisco

    JACKSON
    Softlayer

    SINGH
    IBM

    HAZARD
    Softlayer

    GALLO
    Softlayer

    TAMASKAR
    GENBAND

    SUBRA
    -MANIAN

    Emcien

    LEVESQUE
    Windstream

    IVANOV
    StorPool

    BLOOMBERG
    Intellyx

    BUDHANI
    Soha

    HATHAWAY
    IBM Watson

    TOLL
    ProfitBricks

    LANDRY
    Microsoft

    BEARFIELD
    Blue Box

    HERITAGE
    Akana

    PILUSO
    SIASMSP

    HOLT
    IBM Cloudant

    SHAN
    CTS

    PICCININNI
    EMC

    BRON-
    GERSMA

    Modulus

    PAIGE
    CenturyLink

    SABHIKHI
    Cognitive Scale

    MILLS
    Green House Data

    KATZEN
    CenturyLink

    SLOPER
    CenturyLink

    SRINIVAS
    EMC

    TALREJA
    Cisco

    GORBACHEV
    Systems Services Inc.

    COLLISON
    Apcera

    PRABHU
    OpenCrowd

    LYNN
    CodeFutures

    SWARTZ
    Ericsson

    MOSHENKO
    CoreOS

    BERMINGHAM
    SIOS

    WILLIS
    Stateless Networks

    MURPHY
    Gridstore

    KHABE
    Vicom

    NIKOLOV
    GetClouder

    DIETZE
    Windstream

    DALRYMPLE
    EnterpriseDB

    MAZZUCCO
    TierPoint

    RIVERA
    WHOA.com

    HERITAGE
    Akana

    SEYMOUR
    6fusion

    GIANNETTO
    Author

    CARTER
    IBM

    ROGERS
    Virtustream
    Cloud Expo Silicon Valley All-Star Speakers

    TESAR
    Microsoft

    MICKOS
    HP

    BHARGAVA
    Intel

    RILEY
    Riverbed

    DEVINE
    IBM

    ISAACSON
    CodeFutures

    LYNN
    HP

    HINKLE
    Citrix

    KHAN
    Solgenia

    SINGH
    Bigdata

    BEACH
    SendGrid

    BOSTOCK
    IndependenceIT

    DE SOUZA
    Cisco

    PATTATHIL
    Harbinger

    O'BRIEN
    Aria Systems

    BONIFAZI
    Solgenia

    BIANCO
    Solgenia

    PROCTOR
    NuoDB

    DUGGAL
    EnterpriseWeb

    TEGETHOFF
    Appcore

    BRUNOZZI
    VMware

    HICKENS
    Parasoft

    KLEBANOV
    Cisco

    PETERS
    Esri

    GOLDBERG
    Vormetric

    CUMBER-
    LAND

    Dimension

    ROSENDAHL
    Quantum

    LOOMIS
    Cloudant

    BRUNO
    StackIQ

    HANNON
    SoftLayer

    JACKSON
    SoftLayer

    HOCH
    Virtustream

    KAPADIA
    Seagate

    PAQUIN
    OnLive

    TSAI
    Innodisk

    BARRALL
    Connected Data

    SHIAH
    AgilePoint

    SEGIL
    Verizon

    PODURI
    Citrix

    COWIE
    Dyn

    RITTEN-
    HOUSE

    Cisco

    FALLOWS
    Kaazing

    THYKATTIL
    TimeWarner

    LEIDUCK
    SAP

    LYNN
    HP

    WAGSTAFF
    BSQUARE

    POLLACK
    AOL

    KAMARAJU
    Vormetric

    BARRY
    Catbird

    MENDEN-
    HALL

    SUPERNAP

    SHAN
    KEANE

    PLESE
    Verizon

    BARNUM
    Voxox

    TURNER
    Cloudian

    CALDERON
    Advanced Systems

    AGARWAL
    SOA Software

    LEE
    Quantum

    OBEROI
    Concurrent, Inc.

    HATEM
    Verizon

    GALEY
    Autodesk

    CAUTHRON
    NIMBOXX

    BARSOUM
    IBM

    GORDON
    1Plug

    LEWIS
    Verizon

    YEO
    OrionVM

    NAKAGAWA
    Transparent Cloud Computing

    SHIBATA
    Transparent Cloud Computing

    NATH
    GE

    GOKCEN
    GE

    STOICA
    Databricks

    TANKEL
    Pivotal Software


    Testimonials
    This week I had the pleasure of delivering the opening keynote at Cloud Expo New York. It was amazing to be back in the great city of New York with thousands of cloud enthusiasts eager to learn about the next step on their journey to embracing a cloud-first worldl."
    @SteveMar_Msft
    General Manager of Window Azure
     
    How does Cloud Expo do it every year? Another INCREDIBLE show - our heads are spinning - so fun and informative."
    @SOASoftwareInc
     
    Thank you @ThingsExpo for such a great event. All of the people we met over the past three days makes us confident IoT has a bright future."
    Yasser Khan
    CEO of @Cnnct2me
     
    One of the best conferences we have attended in a while. Great job, Cloud Expo team! Keep it going."

    @Peak_Ten


    Who Should Attend?
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    Business Executives including CEOs, CMOs, & CIOs , Presidents & SVPs, Directors of Business Development , Directors of IT Operations, Product and Purchasing Managers, IT Managers.

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    @ThingsExpo Blogs
    This is the time of year when everyone makes his or her predictions for 2018. I have my predictions as well, but wanted to do something a bit more fun. So I thought I’d look backwards to the state of technology 50 years ago to gain some insights that we can use to make projections about 2018. That is, what “predictions” made in the 1950’s might tell us about 2018. However, it’s really hard to find predictions about the future made in the 1950’s. There was no Internet or Social Media or Reality TV, so I found the next best proxy…sci-fi movies! I decided to review the most popular sci-fi mo...
    Our cities have been connected since the dawn of urbanization in the Indus Valley and on the plains of Mesopotamia nearly ten millennia ago. Cities exist to gather and connect people, bringing us together into communities and joint ventures that need complex networks of communication. But in recent years the connected city has come to mean something more. Today and in the future, the connected city will not just be about people connecting with people, but people with machines, people with people via machines, and perhaps most importantly, machines with machines.
    The time of year when crystal balls get a viewing and many pundits put out their annual predictions for the coming year. Copying off since 2012, rather than thinking up my own, I figured I’d regurgitate what many others expect to happen. Top 10 Cyber Security Predictions for 2018 – Infosec Institute kicks off this year’s Top 10, Top 10 list with a look back at their 2017 predictions (AI, IoT, etc.) and dives head first into 2018 noting that Ransomware will be the most dangerous threat to organizations worldwide; cryptocurrency will attract fraudsters looking to mine; cloud security will (ag...
    The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the development process, accelerating application delivery times, and ensuring that developers will become hero...
    A strong declaration from a historically antagonist foe should put chills in the hearts of Americans preparing themselves for the world ahead: Russian President Vladimir Putin says the nation that leads in AI will be the ruler of the world [1]” … The ruler of the world! From the article (with some modification to avoid political landmines), we get the following: “The development of artificial intelligence has increasingly become a national security concern in recent years. It is China and the US (not Russia), which are seen as the two frontrunners, with China recently announcing its ambi...
    This month, an AI (artificial intelligence) system passed a medical exam in China for the first time. I wonder how its bedside manner will be? In addition, Saudi Arabia granted citizenship to a robot named Sophia. With all these rapid advancements, I think it is time we explore the spiritual life of robots. Up till recently, programmers coded and configured algorithms, AI, automation and machine learning system and took personal responsibility for all the code. Today, however, AI has escaped the confines of human oversight and has been empowered and employed to self-program, self-optimize, ...
    Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) have been the subject of much discourse in the last several years. They were widely anticipated in the gaming and entertainment industries, but in marketing and corporate settings, the benefits were murky at best. Today, these technologies are becoming more of a reality in all areas of business. For example, the new IKEA® shopping app leverages augmented reality to help shoppers determine how certain popular items will look in their homes – no trip to a crowded megastore necessary. Marriott® deployed virtual reality for customers to see its hot...
    "Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    As we end 2017, I’m tired of writing “lecturing” blogs about what organizations should be doing to master data monetization in order to power their business models and achieve digital transformation. While the objective of every organization should be to master big data and data science (artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning) to drive “data monetization,” let’s take a breath and have some fun. My recent ankle surgery afforded me the opportunity to binge watch “Game of Thrones.” As I watched the impending battle between the White Walkers and humanity, I couldn’t help but ...
    For better or worse, big data has irrevocably altered the digital landscape. The explosion in variety, velocity, volume and value of information presents an abundance of previously unimaginable opportunity. But it also creates a number of challenges that need to be successfully navigated. This reshaped technical world poses the following question to organizations: do you risk presenting, stale, incorrect or erroneous data to your customers? Because, with 2.5 quintillion bytes of data now being created every day, finding a way to manage and harness such potential is a new experience for everyo...
    Net Neutrality rules were originally enacted to ensure that all Americans would have equal access to a free and open Internet. We can argue about what Net Neutrality rules did and did not accomplish in a moment, but now I want to explore the most sensational of all the post–Net Neutrality fears: the death of the Internet. If you’re still reading, you know that the FCC voted to repeal Net Neutrality rules (aka the Open Internet) and replace it with the “Restoring Internet Freedom” order. The outcry from the Open Internet camp has been loud, hyperbolic, hypothetical, and mostly based on the fun...
    When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be looking at some significant engineering investment. On-demand, serverless computing enables deve...
    “Why incur the expense of generating and collecting all of this IoT data if you’re not going to monetize it?” Organizations are racing to embrace the Internet of Things (IoT) as the pundits create “visions of sugar-plums dancing in their heads.” McKinsey Global Institute released their study “The Internet of Things: Mapping the Value beyond the Hype” in June 2015 that highlighted the staggering financial value that IoT could create! (See Figure 1.)
    Recently I read somewhere this statement – As we end 2017 and look ahead to 2018, topics that are top of mind for data professionals are the growing range of data management mandates, including the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation that is directed at personal data and privacy, the growing role of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning in enterprise applications, the need for better security in light of the onslaught of hacking cases, and the ability to leverage the expanding Internet of Things.
    There is a war a-brewin’, but this war will be fought with wits and not brute strength. Ever since Russian President Vladimir Putin’s declaration that “the nation that leads in AI (Artificial Intelligence) will be the ruler of the world,” the press and analysts have created hysteria regarding the ramifications of artificial intelligence on everything from public education to unemployment to healthcare to Skynet. Note: artificial intelligence (AI) endows applications with the ability to automatically learn and adapt from experience via interacting with the surroundings / environment. See the b...
    What's disruptive innovation, and why does it matter to leaders in the C-suite? It's how the savvy non-conformist will target market opportunities. How does this happen, when established companies seem to have the advantage? Creative software developers can quickly apply new technologies and digital business models to capture untapped demand.

    Moreover, the most disruptive new companies will eventually reshape entire industries, swiftly pushing aside the legacy incumbent players -- it's a form of Digital Darwinism. The global networked economy will blossom, thanks to the pervasive In...
    "IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to iterate use cases, bring understanding to those seeking to explore complicated technical concepts and ...
    22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infras...
    So data warehousing may not be cool anymore, you say? It’s yesterday’s technology (or 1990’s technology if you’re as old as me) that served yesterday’s business needs. And while it’s true that recent big data and data science technologies, architectures and methodologies seems to have rendered data warehousing to the back burner, it is entirely false that there is not a critical role for the data warehouse and Business Intelligence in digitally transformed organizations.