Chapter 3.  Designing a Solution

Now that you know about the features of the Palm OS and you have figured out what development environment you are going to use, it is time to design a new application. To do this, you need to know what the Palm OS provides by way of UI elements. Second, you need a description of how and where these elements are used in an application. To this end, we show you several forms, dialog boxes, and alerts; we discuss what works and what doesn’t, so that you can intelligently design your own projects.

From this discussion of UI elements, we move to the more general discussion of key issues that need to be addressed in the design of any Palm OS application. We cover everything from what OS versions you should support to determining what tasks an application should accomplish.

From this general overview, we move to a concrete example: the UI of the Sales application. This is the sample application that we are going to create and then dissect in this book. We show you its design, what actions the user performs, how we prototyped it, and the design complications we encountered. Once we’ve covered the handheld portion of the application, we turn to a description of its conduit.

Throughout this discussion, keep in mind the important principles you learned in Chapter 1 about the design of a Palm OS device. Remember also that a Palm application needs to work great and be simple to use. This means that quintessential handheld tasks must be simple to do and faster ...

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