Gavin Pickin

March 11, 2016

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ColdBox Relax is a set of restful tools, for lazy experts, that provides an easy way to describe RESTful web services, test RESTful Web Services, monitor RESTful web services, and document your RESTful API.

The first question you might ask is, if DocBox can document my CFCs, why should I consider using Relax for that?

Relax vs DocBox

Docbox gives you quality Documentation for Developers… but Relax goes beyond that.
Relax gives you documentation for your API, focused on what consumers need. Relax allows you to dive into your API, an organized view with the ability to drill down. There are tools to allow you to call your API, storing history of previous calls, allowing you to rebuild your requests and test again.
Relax focuses on solving the problems we found while using other frameworks and tools.

Making Relax even better

With all of the work everyone is doing with CFML these days, and in web development in general. We are all moving closer and closer to RESTful API web services, with a variety of front end consumers, with the like of Ionic and Angular leading the way, but many more options are out there. Tools need to keep improving, and we believe that RELAX is no different.

If you have worked with RESTful APIs in and outside of CFML, you might be familiar with Swagger, which is now the Swagger/OpenAPI Specification, Postman and many others. As with all Ortus Products, open source and commercial, we study other languages and tools, to bring the best back to the CFML Community, and this is no different with Relax.

To help us make Relax better, we’ve brought on board Jon Clausen, an experienced CFML Developer and community member, who has worked on numerous API projects, to help lead the way… and the progress is amazing. Relax Version 2.2.0 is already available, more information can be found here

The new version of Relax is almost ready to be cut, including support for the support for Swagger/OpenAPI specification ( as well as backwards compatibility for Relax’s current DSL ), some new UI tools, taking the best features of API testing, documentation, and development tools like Postman and, among others.  Upcoming releases of Relax implement similar toolsets natively to give you all the benefits, with all the convenience you need. One of the best features is having your Tests and your API documentation living together to allow you to just drop sample outputs auto generated from tests, directly into the new Swagger/OpenAPI Specification folder structure.

Why move away from the existing Relax DSL?

There were a lot of things right with the Relax DSL, specifically one place to structure and document your complete API, in a familiar CFC format, and the ability to generate your ColdBox routes for you. The Open API Specification takes it further, making your documentation / specification HTTP verb and response code aware, and supports YAML and JSON, to make it familiar to non-CFML developers and transferrable to a variety of platforms.

To be the first to see what we’re doing with Relax, join us Wednesday the 16th of March, and 11am central in our Ortus Rest 2016 roadshow, where myself, Gavin Pickin and Jon Clausen will give you an intro to Relax and a sneak peak into all of the new features.

More information on the roadshow webinars can be found here, including the recordings of the previous webinars.

We’re excited to show you what we’re working on, so bring your comments, questions and recommendations, and help make all of our lives easier, and ‘relax’ with ColdBox Relax: ReSTful Tools For Lazy Experts

Additional Resources

Open API Specification


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