This thread reminded me enough of an old itch that I simply have to scratch it, and a new build of Acronis TI Home 10 afforded me the chance (excuse) to restore my system back to an earlier stage and reinstall the nVidia driver (from Windows Update) several times, each time using a different language setting. The finding:
If I synchronize all three language related settings (Date-Num etc. format, location, system locale a.k.a default language for non-Unicode programs), then the nVidia item on the desktop context menu (the one that shows question marks on the screenshot I posted last time) would be normal, displaying "NVIDIA Control Panel" when in English (U.S.) mode, and "NVIDIA 控制面板" when in Chinese (Taiwan) mode.
If they aren't in sync, then I might get "NVIDIA ????" instead. Now, the strange part: say I have the three settings like the following--
Date-Num etc. format: English
System Locale: Chinese (Taiwan)
and the "NVIDIA ????" context menu entry. I can get it back to normal the moment I Change the Date-Num etc. format to Chinese (Taiwan). No reboot is required. If I change it back immediately, the normal (Chinese) context menu entry stays. If I then reboot the system, however, I get the "NVIDIA ????" thing again.
I guess I can live with it now. What I really like, however, is for software (and web sites) to let me choose the UI language instead of trying to be too smart. Though I need East Asian language support, I'm using an English version of Windows exactly because I prefer English UI. If you understand Chinese, you'll know "NVIDIA 控制面板" is an awkward term. It's like babelfish translation--understandable (sometimes) but not pretty. For things I need to see every day, I prefer something prettier.
I'm not a professional coder. I write mostly scripts, especially VBA scripts. I once worked on a computer with Chinese Windows and Chinese Office, and I simply couldn't get any work done with my VBA scripts, for the VBA references were too cryptic to be understandable.