Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Globalization!

At work, we are going to be bringing on a lot of European customers over the next couple of months, so my current project is the Globalization of our web application. Not a small undertaking as any who have done so will already know.

When we originally wrote our web app, we did not take any Globalization into account. Our web app was first written using the .NET beta version and I do not think any support existed for globalization, but now that we are on .NET 2.0, there is quite a bit of support.

One of the first things I discovered was the .NET CultureInfo object in the System.Globalization namespace. Most of our web pages derive from a custom Page object, and in setting the Page.Culture object in the custom page with the user's preferred culture, .NET did most of the work in reformating dates and numbers. I did however have to go through and remove a bit of custom date formatting that was being done throughout the app.

Another tool that was brought to my attention was the jQuery Globalization project, which can be found here. If you are not familiar with jQuery, it is a JavaScript library that really simplifies client-side coding in web pages. I have only recently begun using it, but I am quickly becoming a fan.

I have also discovered the TimeZoneInfo object, although I have not actually started using it yet. This object allows easy time conversion between time zones as well as to/from UTC and local time zones. However, before I can start using this, I need finish converting all of our Database datetime columns to be UTC instead of our local EST.

Welcome to my coding blog

Hello and welcome to my new coding blog. I simply plan to blog about my coding experiences with .Net, SQL, XSLT, and various other languages in hopes of retaining and furthering my understanding of them.

To tell you a little about myself, I am a 41 year old software engineer and I currently work at a small company who hosts a web application for what we call an "Any-To-Any Data Translation and Transport Service". This simply means we take data from our customers in any format, translate it to any format, and deliver it to their customers or suppliers. I have worked here since the company started, nearly eleven years ago. Before that, I worked as a Developer and a Release Engineer for a EDI Translator software company that no longer exists.

My coding experiences to date include C# (which is the majority of the coding I do), SQL, HTML, JavaScript, XML, XSLT, and recently some AJAX.

I first got interested in coding back in High School in the mid-Eightys. My first experience in coding was in Basic on a Commodore PET. I never thought of coding as my career back then. My coding back then was all just a hobby. My original career choice was to be a Chef and that is what I went to college for, but that was not meant to be and here I am.