Thursday, August 20, 2009


Here's an interesting post on how to get an iPhone-like interface in your WinMo application. It seems like a lot of work to get the functionality you'd get for "free" if you created an iPhone application. My first thought was that I didn't think it was a good sign for the Windows Mobile community that an article like this even exists. It felt like SDK-envy to me.

But then I thought about it some more. As somebody who spent years programming for my non-preferred platform, I really do applaud an effort to work around the limitations of a platform in order to create something that's better, even if it takes a lot more work. I also applaud the willingness to borrow good things from other platforms, as long as the goal isn't to be "as good" as the other platform. Shooting for "as good" never results in greatness, but recognizing that there is a better way can be the first step toward it.

In the long run, maybe it's a really good thing for the WinMo community that you have people who want to create apps with interfaces that are better than the standard WinMo user interface and are willing to put in extra effort to do it. There are definitely signs of life in the WinMo developer community. And, if you think about it, every .Net developer out there is a potential WinMo developer, so with some smart non-Balmer-esque management decisions, Microsoft could capitalize on that base of developers and the apparent desire of at least some of them to create something really good to catapult WinMo solidly back into the fray.

Alas, the chances of any non-Balmer-esque management decisions is not particularly good, but one can hope.

1 comment:

Malcolm Hall said...

When the SDK first came out I tried to port the UINavigationController/Bar/Item to .NET CF using GapiDraw to do the alphablending ,I still have the source if anyone wants it). Then a few days into the project when I got stuck with fonts not being anti-aliased when layering I began to ask my self why am I doing Microsoft's work for them? I haven't used WM since.

Its great to attempt to develop your own UI but only as a learning experience. No one will ever prefer your UI over the native one because there is no way you have time to implement every feature users demand. e.g. support different resolutions, keyboard input, copy and paste, the list goes on and on.