Today, a good user interface must have a nice look, too. As the iPhone shows, using an application must be some kind of fun.

In order to create such GUIs, the controls provided by the .NET Compact Framework are lacking a lot of functionality. However, the MSDN gives us some hints: in this article, they show us how to create a button filled with a gradient background.

When using gradients from RGB(238, 238, 238) to RGB(128, 128, 128) one can reach pretty nice results. Furthermore, it is possible to only fill the upper 10 pixels of a black button with a gradient from black to white using the StartOffSet and EndOffSet property. This way, you get buttons similar to the ones currently used by HTC for their TouchFlo user interface.

Well, what about adding rounded corners to the gradient filled buttons? This is far more easy that you might think. I have added a code example on my community pda-dev.de: Gradient Button Code.
Simply copy the code located in the linked topic. It must be inserted at the end of the function DrawImage from the original example out of the MSDN.
The idea is to draw the border manually instead of just adding a rectangle around the button. At each corner, we “dash” the border by one pixel to achieve the look of a rounded corner. That’s all the trick!

If you have ever wondered what the nice color names from the .NET Color structure in namespace System.Drawing.Color actually mean, you will find this page very useful.
They present a listing of the named colors in .NET, show how they look like and also specify the corresponding hexadecimal values.

Recently I visited Jazoon, an international conference for Java developers at Zurich, Switzerland.

Having heard a lot of interesting talks, I want to sum up my impressions and try to figure out some of the latest trends in the world of Java as well as interesting facts for software architects.

This is part 4 of my series of blog posts and deals with

Google Android

In his talk about the Google Android platform, Peter Wlodarczak described the experiences he made when developing a mobile application for the new Smartphone OS from Google.

His application is a mobile translator, which is even able to do some OCR in order to translate e.g. Chinese signs.

Developing applications for Windows CE based Smartphones for years, I want to compare the impressions I got from Android to the experiences I made with Windows CE.

Read more…