Resources are external files (that is, non-code files) that are used by your code and compiled into your application at build time. Android supports a number of different kinds of resource files, including XML, PNG, and JPEG files. The XML files have very different formats depending on what they describe. This document describes what kinds of files are supported, and the syntax or format of each.
Resources are externalized from source code, and XML files are compiled into a binary, fast loading format for efficiency reasons. Strings, likewise are compressed into a more efficient storage form. It is for these reasons that we have these different resource types in the Android platform.
This is a fairly technically dense document, and together with the Available Resources document, they cover a lot of information about resources. It is not necessary to know this document by heart to use Android, but rather to know that the information is here when you need it.
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