Interview for Developing Pocket PC Applications using .NET Compact Framework and CFMX Web Services
"Developing Pocket PC Applications using .NET Compact Framework and CFMX
Web Services" interview with Dave Watts
Michael Smith: This time we are talking with Dave Watts about his CFUNITED-05
talk "Developing Pocket PC Applications using .NET Compact Framework and CFMX
Web Services". So why should a developer come to your session Dave?
Dave Watts: Everyone attending the conference already knows how to develop CF
applications with HTML interfaces. Some even know how to build rich client
interfaces with Flash and CF. But there's a whole world of devices out there,
for which Flash or HTML may not be the best solution in many cases. The Windows
Mobile platform used by Pocket PC PDAs and cell phones is a good example of
this. You can build Flash solutions for it, but there are quite a few
limitations there. So why not use the native forms toolset for building truly
rich client interfaces? While Windows Mobile is not the only player in the PDA
space, it is quickly gaining on Palm OS, so it's definitely worth considering
MS: Is Windows Mobile similar to Flash from the programmers point of view?
DW: Windows Mobile is a platform, and like any platform you have many ways you
can program for it. You can even use Flash with it! Windows Mobile supports
Flash 6, so you can do a lot of the same things with Flash on Windows Mobile
that you can do with Flash on your desktop.
However, the way you use a Windows Mobile device tends to be a little different
than the way you use your desktop. You might have a constant network connection
on your desktop, but you probably won't on your PDA, even if it's also a phone.
While Flash can persist some data locally, you might find that a more
traditional client-server approach is a little more powerful and flexible in
this case, and that's what .NET Compact Framework gives you.
MS: So does it provide support for intermittent network connectivity or do you
have to write special code to handle that?
DW:Yes, and yes. Because it's a local application, it has access to any kind of
local storage options that any other application might have. This even goes as
far as running a mini version of SQL Server! However, just like any local
application, you have to write the code to manage that storage. Likewise, your
application will have to determine the state of network connectivity and act
MS: So what language do you develop the front end in?
DW: Since the .NET Compact Framework is really just a reduced-size version of
the .NET Framework, a lot of things work the same way in both. You can use C-
sharp or Visual Basic.NET for .NET Compact Framework development just like you
can for regular .NET applications.
MS: And how does ColdFusion fit into this?
DW: I think the presentation title kind of gives this away - web services!
MS: Aha - makes sense. Sounds like a really cool topic - see you at CFUNITED.