|By Christian Thompson||
|May 1, 2003 12:00 AM EDT||
Don't reinvent the wheel." We've all heard, and perhaps uttered, this maxim many times during our programming careers. ColdFusion MX has introduced new features to help CF developers avoid reinventing the wheel, including tag-based user-defined functions (UDFs) and ColdFusion components (CFCs).
As more CF developers begin to use these features, more code will be available for other developers to download and use. However, code reuse in ColdFusion is not limited to ColdFusion code. Integrating with Java is easier than ever with MX. Since the developer base for Java is large and it has been around much longer than ColdFusion UDFs and CFCs, there is a lot of code already out there that CF developers can use. I discovered this firsthand on a recent project when I didn't think about using existing Java libraries before starting down another path.
This project required me to programmatically access e-mail messages in a subfolder of an e-mail inbox. I couldn't use the CFPOP tag to do this because the protocol implemented by CFPOP - the "Post Office Protocol" - is designed to allow users to download messages from the "inbox" folder only. Another protocol is required to access subfolders - the Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP).
After discovering that I needed to use IMAP to accomplish my task, I looked for a way to use it with ColdFusion. Unfortunately, since there is no built-in ColdFusion tag that implements IMAP, and I had been looking for an excuse to play around with Java, my first reaction was "Cool! I'll write my own!"
I learned a few IMAP commands and started playing around with the low-level Java networking libraries. Two days and many lines of code later, I had written a marginal IMAP client. Although it mostly worked, it still needed additional functionality and I wasn't at all confident in its stability. I knew there had to be a better way.
Fortunately, I discovered that there is a much better way - use the JavaMail API. According to Sun's JavaMail Web site (http://java.sun.com/products/javamail), this API "provides a set of abstract classes that model a mail system" including support for IMAP - the same functionality (plus a lot more) that I had been struggling with for two days. Best of all, since it's included in the J2EE platform, on which ColdFusion MX is built, I didn't have to download anything or make any configuration changes to use it. This was the option I should have considered from the start.
Now that I had found a library, I wanted to make it simple to use from ColdFusion. Since I was already comfortable using the CFPOP tag, I decided to encapsulate some of JavaMail's functionality into a custom tag that, as much as possible, provides the same interface as CFPOP. The tag's full code is shown in the code listing. Listing 1 shows the functions that interact with the API.
Listing 2 shows the tag's main logic. For the sake of brevity, the code shown in the listing includes only one of the actions provided by CFPOP's interface - the "GETHEADERONLY" action. This excludes the "GETALL" action, which provides the ability to view a message's contents and attachments, and the "DELETE" action.
The JavaMail API consists of a bunch of classes that model a mail system. The highest-level class is the "Session" class. The session class allows you to specify properties like "port" and "timeout." To specify properties, first create and set a "Properties" object. The following sets the protocol to IMAP and the port to 143:
Now create the session object and pass in the properties object:
The session class also provides a method for getting the "store." The store class abstracts the underlying protocol (in this case IMAP) and provides methods for logging into the mailbox.
obj_Store = createObject("Java",
Now you are ready to start accessing folders. The only folder that you can access using POP is the "inbox" folder. With IMAP, you can access subfolders below the inbox. The following code accesses and opens the folder "test," which is a subfolder of "inbox":
Note that this code opens the folder with read permissions only. This is a good idea if you only want to browse the contents of the folder. If you want to delete, move, or update messages, open the folder with read and write permissions:
The next step is to get a list of messages in the folder. With the JavaMail API, this is done by retrieving an array of "Message" objects.
This code returns all messages in the folder. If you only need a subset of the messages, you must pass an array of message numbers to the "getMessages" function. Because I modeled my IMAP tag after the CFPOP tag, I wanted to allow the user to pass a list of message numbers to the tag. This discrepancy was easily remedied by using the built-in "ListToArray" ColdFusion function.
Once you have the messages, you are ready to read the message headers using methods of the "Message" object. The following shows how to access the "subject" and "to addresses" of the first message in the folder (which is located at position 1 of the messages array):
// Get the received date
// Get the to addresses
Note that the "getRecipients" method of the "Message" object returns an array of addresses since an e-mail message can be addressed to more than one person. This is also true when getting the "from", "reply-to", "CC", and "BCC" addresses. Also note the dollar sign ($) syntax used to invoke the "RecipientType" class. RecipientType is an "inner class" of the "Message" class. Although you can access inner classes in Java code by using dot notation (e.g., "Message.RecipientType"), this doesn't work in ColdFusion code.
Now that you have read the messages, the next step is to delete the unwanted ones. To do this, you set the "deleted" flag of the message and then call the folder object's "expunge" method:
Where to Go from Here
The code presented here only scratches the surface of the functionality provided by IMAP. Most obviously, it lacks the ability to read message contents and attachments. Another useful feature would allow users to retrieve a listing of subfolders. If you are interested in adding these or other features, check out the JavaMail tutorial at http://developer.java.sun.com/developer/ onlineTraining/JavaMail/contents.html and the API specification at http://java.sun.com/products/ javamail/1.3/docs/javadocs/index.html.
With the release of MX, ColdFusion developers have more options for code reuse, including native access to a wide array of predeveloped Java software. Sometimes, especially for developers who don't have extensive Java experience, using existing Java libraries is not always the most obvious option. However, in ColdFusion MX, it can be a very worthwhile option to consider. It certainly is one that I strongly recommend the next time you start a project and think "Cool, I'll just write it myself..."
SYS-CON Events announced today that SOA Software, an API management leader, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SOA Software is a leading provider of API Management and SOA Governance products that equip business to deliver APIs and SOA together to drive their company to meet its business strategy quickly and effectively. SOA Software’s technology helps businesses to accelerate their digital channels with APIs, drive partner adoption, monetize their assets, and achieve a...
Oct. 31, 2014 07:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,122
SYS-CON Events announced today that Aria Systems, the recurring revenue expert, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Aria Systems helps leading businesses connect their customers with the products and services they love. Industry leaders like Pitney Bowes, Experian, AAA NCNU, VMware, HootSuite and many others choose Aria to power their recurring revenue business and deliver exceptional experiences to their customers.
Oct. 31, 2014 06:30 PM EDT Reads: 2,198
SYS-CON Events announced today that AgilePoint, the leading provider of Microsoft-centric Business Process Management software, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 2nd International @ThingsExpo which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. AgilePoint is the leading provider of Microsoft-based Business Process Management (BPM) software products, has 1,300+ on-premise and cloud deployments in 25+ countries and provides the same advanced BPM feature set as J2EE vendors like IBM and Appian for the Microsoft .NET native environment. AgilePoint customer...
Oct. 31, 2014 05:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,354
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to evolve the way the world does business; however, understanding how to apply it to your company can be a mystery. Most people struggle with understanding the potential business uses or tend to get caught up in the technology, resulting in solutions that fail to meet even minimum business goals. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO / President / Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., will show what is needed to leverage the IoT to transform your business. He will discuss opportunities and challenges ahead for the IoT from a market and tec...
Oct. 31, 2014 04:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,641
SYS-CON Events announced today that Utimaco will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Utimaco is a leading manufacturer of hardware based security solutions that provide the root of trust to keep cryptographic keys safe, secure critical digital infrastructures and protect high value data assets. Only Utimaco delivers a general-purpose hardware security module (HSM) as a customizable platform to easily integrate into existing software solutions, embed business logic and build s...
Oct. 31, 2014 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,981
One of the biggest challenges when developing connected devices is identifying user value and delivering it through successful user experiences. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kuniavsky, Principal Scientist, Innovation Services at PARC, will describe an IoT-specific approach to user experience design that combines approaches from interaction design, industrial design and service design to create experiences that go beyond simple connected gadgets to create lasting, multi-device experiences grounded in people’s real needs and desires.
Oct. 31, 2014 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,848
The Internet of Things will greatly expand the opportunities for data collection and new business models driven off of that data. In her session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, will discuss how for this to be effective you not only need to have infrastructure and operational models capable of utilizing this new phenomenon, but increasingly service providers will need to convince a skeptical public to participate. Get ready to show them the money! Speaker Bio: Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, has spent 16 years as a marketing, product management, and busin...
Oct. 31, 2014 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 2,355
SYS-CON Events announced today that TeleStax, the main sponsor of Mobicents, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TeleStax provides Open Source Communications software and services that facilitate the shift from legacy SS7 based IN networks to IP based LTE and IMS networks hosted on private (on-premise), hybrid or public clouds. TeleStax products include Restcomm, JSLEE, SMSC Gateway, USSD Gateway, SS7 Resource Adaptors, SIP Servlets, Rich Multimedia Services, Presence Services/RCS, Diame...
Oct. 31, 2014 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,720
Samsung VP Jacopo Lenzi, who headed the company's recent SmartThings acquisition under the auspices of Samsung's Open Innovaction Center (OIC), answered a few questions we had about the deal. This interview was in conjunction with our interview with SmartThings CEO Alex Hawkinson. IoT Journal: SmartThings was developed in an open, standards-agnostic platform, and will now be part of Samsung's Open Innovation Center. Can you elaborate on your commitment to keep the platform open? Jacopo Lenzi: Samsung recognizes that true, accelerated innovation cannot be driven from one source, but requires a...
Oct. 31, 2014 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 3,402
Things are being built upon cloud foundations to transform organizations. This CEO Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Roger Strukhoff, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo conference chair, will address the big issues involving these technologies and, more important, the results they will achieve. How important are public, private, and hybrid cloud to the enterprise? How does one define Big Data? And how is the IoT tying all this together?
Oct. 31, 2014 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,022
We certainly live in interesting technological times. And no more interesting than the current competing IoT standards for connectivity. Various standards bodies, approaches, and ecosystems are vying for mindshare and positioning for a competitive edge. It is clear that when the dust settles, we will have new protocols, evolved protocols, that will change the way we interact with devices and infrastructure. We will also have evolved web protocols, like HTTP/2, that will be changing the very core of our infrastructures. At the same time, we have old approaches made new again like micro-services...
Oct. 31, 2014 07:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,692
SYS-CON Events announces a new pavilion on the Cloud Expo floor where WebRTC converges with the Internet of Things. Pavilion will showcase WebRTC and the Internet of Things. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices--computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors – connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.
Oct. 30, 2014 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 2,230
The only place to be June 9-11 is Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo 2015 East at the Javits Center in New York City. Join us there as delegates from all over the world come to listen to and engage with speakers & sponsors from the leading Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data companies. Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo are the leading events covering the booming market of Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data for the enterprise. Speakers from all over the world will be hand-picked for their ability to explore the economic strategies that utility/cloud computing provides. Whether public, private, or in a hybrid form, clo...
Oct. 30, 2014 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 1,540
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in software-defined storage (SDS) purpose-built for Windows Servers and Hyper-V, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Gridstore™ is the leader in software-defined storage purpose built for virtualization that is designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Using its patented Server-Side Virtual Controller™ Technology (SVCT) to eliminate the I/O blender effect and accelerate applications Gridsto...
Oct. 30, 2014 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 2,634
SYS-CON Events announced today that Red Hat, the world's leading provider of open source solutions, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Red Hat is the world's leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As the connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, a...
Oct. 30, 2014 12:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,094
As the Internet of Things unfolds, mobile and wearable devices are blurring the line between physical and digital, integrating ever more closely with our interests, our routines, our daily lives. Contextual computing and smart, sensor-equipped spaces bring the potential to walk through a world that recognizes us and responds accordingly. We become continuous transmitters and receivers of data. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Andrew Bolwell, Director of Innovation for HP’s Printing and Personal Systems Group, will discuss how key attributes of mobile technology – touch input, senso...
Oct. 30, 2014 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,791
The Internet of Things (IoT) is making everything it touches smarter – smart devices, smart cars and smart cities. And lucky us, we’re just beginning to reap the benefits as we work toward a networked society. However, this technology-driven innovation is impacting more than just individuals. The IoT has an environmental impact as well, which brings us to the theme of this month’s #IoTuesday Twitter chat. The ability to remove inefficiencies through connected objects is driving change throughout every sector, including waste management. BigBelly Solar, located just outside of Boston, is trans...
Oct. 30, 2014 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 2,208
Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, will examine three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective storage designed to handle the massive surge in back-end data in a world where timely analytics...
Oct. 30, 2014 08:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,664
Internet of @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley announced on Thursday its first 12 all-star speakers and sessions for its upcoming event, which will take place November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in California. @ThingsExpo, the first and largest IoT event in the world, debuted at the Javits Center in New York City in June 10-12, 2014 with over 6,000 delegates attending the conference. Among the first 12 announced world class speakers, IBM will present two highly popular IoT sessions, which will take place November 4-6, 2014 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, Calif...
Oct. 30, 2014 07:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,321
From a software development perspective IoT is about programming "things," about connecting them with each other or integrating them with existing applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Yakov Fain, co-founder of Farata Systems and SuranceBay, will show you how small IoT-enabled devices from multiple manufacturers can be integrated into the workflow of an enterprise application. This is a practical demo of building a framework and components in HTML/Java/Mobile technologies to serve as a platform that can integrate new devices as they become available on the market.
Oct. 29, 2014 02:15 PM EDT Reads: 2,092