I’ve done a lot of Internationalization(I18N) and Localization (L10N) work in my various development positions. One particularly troubling area is currency support. Support of number formats is generally well supported (or can be accomplished with some trivial input translation). However, the tricky area come with support for currency symbols, western currencies such as USD (US$) and CAD(C$) and the Euro (EUR or €) are well supported across character sets and fonts some are not. One particular item is for the Indian Rupee (INR). Ubuntu 10.10 is the first operating system to ship with a font that supports this character ₹
Through the years, I’ve had to develop, maintain and support software on a variety of systems. Unfortunately, it’s often impossible to maintain specific software versions or configurations installed on physical machines. In the realm of web development, this becomes increasingly complex because of the rapid release of multiple browser versions.
To aid in testing, I’ve found that it’s often best to run these configurations in Virtual Machines, I’ve used VirtualPC and VMWare in the past, but have recently become a fan of Sun‘s OpenSource release of VirtualBox as it runs on a wide variety of host systems and supports most x86 based operating systems as clients.
I’ve posted a lot of information about the common ‘free’ open-source software that I routinely use, however… I just realized that I missed one of the most important applications you use, the Operating System itself.
While my “day job” relegates me to use Windows products for much of my work, I do a lot of additional work at home and for friends.
Currently I use and highly recommend Ubuntu Linux for most users, it’s got most of the usability features of Microsofr Windows and Apple OS/X, but without all of the additional baggage. It’s updated regularly, with new releases every 6 months and software patches made available almost daily. Updates are as non-intrusive as the Windows Update process, and only a very few ever require a reboot.
To quiet the other Linux users out there, I’ve used a lot of Linux ‘flavors’ in the past… each has had it’s place and may do so again…. this is my opinion for the moment and will likely change again in a few years. 🙂
Here’s the list: