Windows Mobile and UI in .Net Compact Framework

I recently got assigned to design the UI of a finger friendly UI for windows mobile 6. I was first excited, because I get to work on UI and software usability, but then got really disappointed once I started designing it. The framework does not support image transparency.  You can’t create an image button with the default toolbox. You can’t create scroll bars big enough for a finger to drag and press. There is no finger friendly keyboard by default. I was also trying to find resources on how to develop a multi form application. This took me a while. Why would information like that be hidden?

I found some third party UI libraries which costs an arm and a leg to purchase. I am glad I am working in a big project where sacrificing an arm and a leg is not an issue.

I started working with the evaluation of Resco’s UI toolkit for windows mobile. So far it has been a much more delightful experience. Not saying much about the windows mobile experience. Thinking that the .net 3.5 framework is something that’s state of the art code, I expected at least transparency support in the .net 3.5 compact framework. Let hope that a new framework is introduced with the new 6.5 windows mobile before windows mobile 7.

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