My Secret Life as a Spaghetti Coder
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In a slightly invective tone, Reg makes some great points about assumptions in validation, and the real trouble it can cause. I'm not entirely sure how often I've been guilty, but I know I'll pay a lot closer attention from here on out.

When you build a web app, remember: if it's going public, it has the potential to mess with people's lives.

And now I'm off to re-check those regular expressions I've been using to validate email addresses...

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I can't even begin to tell you how often this type of thing happens to me (with the hyphenated last name). It's really frustrating to deal with, not to mention all of the time and money it wastes getting my name corrected on credit cards, accounts, etc.

Posted by Rob Brooks-Bilson on Sep 20, 2007 at 03:54 PM UTC - 5 hrs

It's never something I've really thought about. Generally I don't go restricting people's names, though I am almost certain I've restricted emails.

In any case, accept my apologies if I've ever caused you trouble - I won't let it happen again! =)

Posted by Sam on Sep 20, 2007 at 04:50 PM UTC - 5 hrs

The good news is that ColdFusion rocks it hard core once again:

#IsValid( "email", "" )#

... gives us:


Posted by Ben Nadel on Sep 21, 2007 at 07:13 AM UTC - 5 hrs

Wow. I'm a moron. When did they put that in there? (Answer: CF7) I guess I should take a closer look when they release new versions - I've been using CF since 4.5, and I don't think I've ever used that function. Of course, we're upgrading straight from CF6 to 8, so that might have something to do with it.

Ben, I think you will be coauthoring the next round of CF books at this pace. Thanks for the insight.

Posted by Sam on Sep 21, 2007 at 07:56 AM UTC - 5 hrs

Thanks for the kind words. Coauthoring would be a nice goal :)

Posted by Ben Nadel on Sep 23, 2007 at 01:54 PM UTC - 5 hrs

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