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Side by side editing of .resx files for localization

WPF allows you to create localized applications with relatively little effort. The localized strings are put into resource files (.resx), one per target language, and maintained as needed. The editing facilities of Visual Studio, however, are not designed to help the localization efforts, however. The GUI can only show one resource file at a time.

Secure storage of passwords in .NET

Storing passwords securely in an application, for instance between different invocations, is a major challenge for a software developer. Storing a password or other sensitive data in plain text is very dangerous. One can attempt to obfuscate the data by means of a symmetric algorithm, but it can be always reverse-engineered from the application.

Microsoft icons for developers

Apparently, Microsoft allows users of Visual Studio to include some icons, supplied with the product. For example, to look at available icons in Visual Studio 2010, locate the file VS2010ImageLibrary.zip in the installation directory of your copy of VS (i.e. C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 10.0\Common7\VS2010ImageLibrary\1033) and extract the .png files you need. You can extract the necessary sub-images from them.

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Windows Phone .NET localization that works

I was quite eager to learn about Windows Phone 7 when the development preview came out. I downloaded the tools and tried to build a sample to get a feel. I must admit that developing .NET application for the new OS is quite easy. However one bit I couldn't make work - localization. With today's global markets and multi-language consumers it is important to be able to deliver your product in different languages. I suspect there was a bug in the version of software I was dealing with then.

Offlineimap bugs

Offlineimap - a utility, used to synchronize between IMAP servers and Maildir style mailboxes on Unix systems, is very convenient. It can be used to back up your mail, stored on a remote IMAP server. Unfortunately, some releases of the utility are quite buggy - the latest version from the previous maintainer was simply broken, refusing to connect to many remote servers. It appears, however, that there is a new maintainer for the project. The GIT repository can be found here. Caveat emptor.

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HTC HD2 (Leo) smartphone can run Android!

During the last day of 2010 news has leaked about a substantial breakthrough in the world of hacking. The quite famous and popular smartphone HTC HD2, also known as Leo, was hacked to run Android 2.2 and 2.3. Originally the phone comes with Windows Mobile 6.3 preinstalled. One needs a lot of space in order to describe all of this OS' shortcomings in the areas of stability, performance, user interface and productivity. However the hardware itself is amazingly good and at par with latest phones from the same and other manufactures.

Samsung Europa Android 2.2 (Froyo) update

Samsung Galaxy Europa i5500 phone is a cheap (around £100 in the UK) and useful smartphone, running currently Android OS version 2.1. An upgrade is expected in the near future to the new, more convenient 2.2 version. However, since this is a low-end model, the release priority is lower than that of its elder sisters, such as Samsung Galaxy S. Therefore there is still no certainty about the exact release date or schedule. We'll need to wait patiently for the company to make an announcement.