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Lesson 17. Flash, ColdFusion, and the Database > Understanding the Flow of Data

Understanding the Flow of Data

The Flash test is a part of the broader eLearning application begun in Lesson 12. Like the survey, the test can be accessed only once the user has logged in. Also like the survey, the Flash movie has access to the username, which is stored as a session variable, accessed by test.cfm (the page that hosts the Flash movie), and passed into Flash as soon as it loads. Unlike the survey, no server behavior can upload the data directly from Flash into a database. Instead, you'll need an intermediary ColdFusion template (or page), which collects the data from Flash and uploads it to the database; the user never sees this template or even knows it is there.

The full eLearning application is depicted in the accompanying figure. Once again, I've colored the boxes representing the pages that are used in this portion of the application. The page login.cfm is colored, because it is the page that sets the username session variable, which is accessed by all of the pages within the restricted area of the site. As you'll probably recall, this information is stored in application.cfm, a file that is hidden from users. A page called test.cfm hosts the Flash movie. The Flash movie contains the test, which you built in the previous lesson. When the user completes the test, the data is sent to flash_test_processor.cfm, which sends the data to the database and sends a confirmation message back to Flash. You'll also create a transcript page, which has a SQL query on it that will show the user how she or he did on the test. You'll use it as a means of confirming that the data really did get sent from Flash into the database.


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