Where are all the ColdFusion SaaS Apps?

Since I have been “between projects” for the last 7 weeks or so, I have been spending most of my time working on some open source stuff and surfing the web. Trying to keep up with all of the happenings in the CFML community. One thing Im noticing a major lack of is SaaS (Software as a Service) applications focused toward CFML developers.
In a community such as the Rails community, there are tons of SaaS apps focused on helping the Rails developer community. Things like wireframe tools, rapid prototyping tools, bug trackers, project management apps. All applications built and aimed primarily at the Rails developer community.
It made me start wondering why there were really no applications like that in our community. Would the CFML community not support such an effort? Are we so used to just using the freely available tools written in other languages and settling for that?
Just yesterday I saw a ColdFusion developer (I wont mention his name but he is pretty well known in the community) mention on Twitter that he was considering purchasing a project management/bug tracking tool that was written in PHP. I would be curious to know how many CFML developers are paying for those services right now. Using an application written in Rails or something else besides CFML.
What do you think? In your opinion, would the CFML community support such an undertaking if the app was good enough?
Do you know of any CFML SaaS applications on the web now? Let me know about them. Im interested in checking some out!

9 thoughts on “Where are all the ColdFusion SaaS Apps?”

  1. Our own SaaS-app: Onlinebase CMS, for customers only of course 😉

    I suppose LighthousePro and Projecttracker could be prime candidates for a SaaS app. Others I don’t know of either…

  2. We could start Rails bashing by conceding that Ruby on Rails is actually better for small and simple apps. It is initially a faster site setup for small apps. But, unavoidably, rails can’t handle the big stuff with grace. And when it comes to SQL Queries – can’t touch it – You have to go see the man YAML. Keep your eye’s on him, he’s a fast one, but behind his back I call him Pencil-Neck. I’d describe him as a thin dog that likes to play fetch – fast but can’t do any complex tricks, ha-ha. After a while things just get messy, it gets constricting, and Rails becomes more of a burden and limitation than an asset. See I’d describe Mr Rails as a ‘square’. No round pegs here, know what I mean? ha-ha. Keep your eye on him too or his ‘rake’ will get you up the back side. ooooh!

    Anyway, I believe that’s why we see so many small and light weight SaaS apps from the RoR crowd.

    We all know the huge proprietary apps that we are building with CFML. 🙂

  3. @bagar,

    My point wasnt to bash Rails. I have done several projects in Rails that turned out great.

    Im merely wondering why no ColdFusion developers havent jumped on that SaaS wagon yet.


    You make a good point. Thank god we dont code in Latin. 😉

  4. Funny you should mention it, but I actually wrote my own bug tracker CFC and have been loving it ever since.
    – It stores errors in the DB and just keeps track of the latest 100 errors to prevent accidental DB bloating if a recurring error happens overnight.
    – It serializes cgi, form, url, session, and cfcatch data as JSON and stores it along with the date the error first occurred, date it occurred last, and the number of times it occurred.
    – It stores a hash of the cfcatch stacktrace which is used to identify the error so the number of occurrences can be counted.
    – When I want to view it, I can just de-serialize the data and use cfdump.

    Unfortunately I wrote it on the clock at my job, so I don’t actually own it, lol.
    I was thinking about rebuilding it for myself though and selling it, but I want to store the errors as a JSON file instead so that it will work with minimal setup within Application.cfc. I’d also like to make it a little less rough around the edges.

  5. @bagar – no, MY wee wee is bigger! … o.O

    I’ve been wondering the same thing for a while now. At least we have something somewhat similar to rubyforge in riaforge. I haven’t created an account yet, but it already doesn’t look like it’s that friendly to developers.

    It would be cool to get a bug tracker going, greater dev usage of Github (or a CF-based site running as a massive Git server), more browser-based tools like the plugins in CFWheels (since we have no command line *cry*), a decent documentation generator engine, and less reliance on underlying technology (Java-based packages). These are all things I enjoy in Ruby and Rails that I wish I could use in CF. Oh, and as soon as CFWheels wants to build in a testing framework so I can get my TDD on, I’d be very happy.

  6. Not to be rude but why does this matter? What I care about is a tool that’s good for tracking bugs or managing a project. Why does it matter if it’s running on something other than CF?

  7. Personally I don’t care about having SAS in CF.
    I like to use any tools that let me and my team be productive in our core competencies. For us this means:
    I or someone in the team already knows how to use it.
    It is easy to install/use.
    Has little or no maintenance.
    Learning it adds a skill to my and my team’s careers.
    Many times this doesn’t mean the best but it works.

    For example I rather fork out some $$ to use Jira as a bug tracker than reinvent the wheel. There are so many good tools out there that definitely take less time to learn them than to try to build it or take the risk of half baked solution.

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