I'll be openly honest, I've always had more of a special spot for Adobe Coldfusion 7 then ASP.NET (all flavours of it) until today. No, I didn't wake up and figure out that the Microsoft inplant chip was switched onto high "fanboi" status. I actually sat down and began to play with Visual Web and created some mini applications to see how "great" it truly is (eat my own dogfood and all).

Click here to watch it.The thing that ASP.NET folks need to bare in mind, is that writing an application that uses the access data layer, in a fashion that is being cooked inside Visual Web 05 at the moment, is fantastic and a dream come true for most Coldfusion Developers (obviously if the tool itself was spitting out CFML and not ASP). As in Coldfusion, we generally have to rely on a framework of some sort (Coldspring comes to mind as being probably the closest - its a great framework too) to handle this, or we'd pretty much start writing various DAO Objects within to ensure we have this amount of abstraction in place.

I'm more focused on the input, not so much the output when I say all of this by the way, as the closest I guess the CF Developer has to Visual Web 2005 and this style of development is probably CFEclipse (which, was built by the hard work of some great java gurus I admire, namely a friend of mine Spike *plug* as although Eclipse isn't pro-Microsoft at times, these folks did a great job with it and for free!)

I'm going to give credit were credit's due, say what you will about my affiliation as of late, but this is a freaking dream to punch code into. I'm so hot under the collar for this, that I'm going to see if I can put together a side by side comparison of Coldfusion AJAX and ASP.NET AJAX together to try and illustrate how far ASP.NET AJAX has come (I'm putting it to being a project for my flight to Seattle next week) as it's coding with cruise control on.

It's going to totally tick off the Coldfusion folks whom I'm friends with, but I think they need to see it first and then have their say.

I should also end with a quote I got from a buddy of mine who's an ASP developer himself and it cracked me up.

Chucky says:
f@#!k me i didnt realise 2005 could do sh!t like this
Chucky says:
f@#!king dumb me
Chucky says:
2003 is gone!
Scott says:
lmao
Chucky says:
ive been doing this for 5
f@#!king years
Scott says:
i'm using that as a quote.
Chucky says:
and this is going on around me
Chucky says:
its like frames in web pages, without the frames

You can read more of Chucky's adventures at his blog (I've asked him to blog his experience, and also to keep it less, colourful hehe). (I had to edit the wording a bit, as Chucky got a bit excited).

I should also mention that while the tool itself is a compelling site to behold, combine it now with AJAX and I'm kind of recanting my previous posts last year about AJAX being a one-trick poney. Now, AJAX, You have my attention as it's now something that completes the picture (UI Framework + Server-side Code + tool = result)

Just download it, and see for yourself and play before commenting. It's quite good.

[SB edit]
Matt (CF Dev) asked if I was now picking a fight with CF Devs now, the answer is no! not in the slightest (please don't take it at that either), just saying that when you're a CF Developer punching code all day, this kind of approach makes you stop and think a bit more about tool vs framework. It will annoy some though at how easy it is from going A to Z in under 20mins or less.