One note on my previous entry — about the whole IP debate — before I continue.
The music industry (part of the content industry) blames Napster etc. for the drop in CD sales.
OK, that’s one conclusion.
How about another conclusion: When your buying audience is mainly younger, and younger people have less discretionary income, $18 for a mediocre CD is not going to cut it.
And what recently has been worth paying even $5 for? Where is the new Layla, the equivalent of Begger’s Banquet, the new U2 or REM?
Think about it.
Well, I have recently gone over to the “Dark Side.”
Yes, I have been coding in Microsoft technologies.
I had a job interview earlier this week — for a Cold Fusion position — and the head developer there mentioned that the company was not necessarily planning on staying with CF forever: It was, at least, examining the whole .Net framework.
When asked for my experience with ASP pages and other MS technologies, I had to say that my only experience with ASP pages was modifying and building some templates for IntelliChoice. I had done some VB that was actually used at work, though no one at work knew it (widgits). No C++, but a lot of MS SQL Server.
But the SQL Server was the most of it.
So I got the bug to learn ASP (after which I’ll delve into the .Net framework).
Installed IIS 5 on both my Win2000 boxes and began coding.
Some initial notes:
- I’m already way up on the curve for ASP coding. I went to the library to pick up a couple of ASP books, and one was “ASP for Dummies” (I like these books for intros; “SQL for Dummies” is the best SQL intro I’ve ever seen). With the little I was able to glean from the installation examples, some Web cruising and my background, I’ve basically covered about 250-300 pages of the ~350-page book. Hey, the first thing I did is hook it up to a database, output results, get result count and make the results list sortable. That’s my idea of a “hello world” file…
- While I’m “up on the curve,” I’m certain I missed a lot of stuff, such as the objects ASP supplies and all that. I’m not an expert, that’s for damn sure. But ramped up quickly, yes.
- ASP is more like PHP than Cold Fusion, at least to me. Cold Fusion’s biggest deal (to me) is the way it makes it SOOOO easy to connect to a database and output results. PHP and ASP are similar in the database connectivity fashion; not easy but not hard, either. Just have to learn the syntax (CF is too easy….CFQUERY then CFOUTPUT….whoo-hoo!)
- There is some clumsiness in ASP — as in other languages — that make one yearn for CF. For example, the whole concept of “current row” is absent in ASP (as far as I can tell); the “recordCount” feature is an extra step as part of the query, and none too intuitive.
- There are a lot of features that I’ve already run across in ASP that I just don’t see the real need for, though it’s always nice to have (cursors and so on). I have to delve more into the not-quite-stateless nature of ASP HTML.
- The markup is very similar to PHP. The text-manipulation tools don’t seem to be as robust, but I’m just learning now…
- One of the things I still don’t understand is the lack of information about how to hook up to a MS SQL Server. Yes, ODBC and all that, but there is default user that is added as part of the IIS installation. THAT user has to be added to whatever database is used as, basically, a DBO. Took several hours to get this. The Access connection took about 3 seconds. Like UNIX, it all comes down to permissions….interesting
- ASP — like CF — has some sort of built-in database update/insert types of functionalities. As with CF, I’m going to avoid them like the plague: Use standard HTML and SQL. But what do other ASP programmers use? I just don’t know.