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Building Microsoft ASP.NET Applications for Mobile Devices, Second Edition [Electronic resources] - نسخه متنی

Andy Wigley; Peter Roxburgh

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Chapter 14: Multilingual and Multicultural Web Applications

In some applications, multilingual support will be required. Most browsers, including those commonly used on handheld devices, allow the user to specify a preference for content in a particular language. User preferences are passed to the content server in the HTTP headers of each request. Microsoft ASP.NET contains powerful, easy-to-use facilities for writing multilingual applications that can supply content according to a user's language preference. In this chapter, you'll learn how to build a multilingual mobile user interface.

Building Multilingual and Multicultural Mobile Web Applications

You can increase the usability of your application for users in different countries of the world by offering an interface that's translated into the user's preferred language as well as formatting currency and dates according to cultural norms. ASP.NET has a number of features to help you build applications that provide content appropriate for a specific culture.

When you're considering applications for users in different regions of the world, don't make the mistake of thinking that you need only to translate the user interface into various languages. Language is only one part of it; you also need to consider issues such as date, time, and currency formatting, and string sort ordering. By considering internationalization during the design phase of an application, you can produce a high-quality, internationalized application that you can easily extend to new target cultures. The alternative—developing your application in one language and then retrofitting support for other cultures—can be expensive and might not result in a quality solution.

In your design of a multilingual, multicultural application, you must consider a number of issues:

Display and support of input using different character setsUse the System.Resources.ResourceManager class and resource files to present strings in different languages. Use the responseEncoding and requestEncoding attributes of the <Globalization> element in your Web.config file to configure Unicode character encodings such as utf-8 for the transfer of characters between client and server.

Date and time formattingUse the System.Globalization.DateTimeFormatInfo class for help with this.

Local conventions for formatting currency, weights, and measuresThe System.Globalization.NumberFormatInfo class can help with this.

Alphabetic sort orders that conform to norms for the character set used by a cultureUse the System.Globalization.SortKey and System.Globalization.CompareInfo classes to help with sorting.

Globalization is the process of building in support for culture-specific date formats, character sets, currency formats, and units of measure. The management of string resources for different languages is called localization.

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