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Beginning Mac OS X Snow Leopard Programming [Paperback]

Michael Trent , Drew McCormack

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Book Description

Jan. 26 2010
A solid introduction to programming on the Mac OS X Snow Leopard platform

The Mac OS X Snow Leopard system comes with everything you need in its complete set of development tools and resources. However, finding where to begin can be challenging. This book serves as an ideal starting point for programming on the Mac OS X Snow Leopard platform. Step-by-step instructions walk you through the details of each featured example so that you can type them out, run them, and even figure out how to debug them when they don't work right. Taking into account that there is usually more than one way to do something when programming, the authors encourage you to experiment with a variety of solutions. This approach enables you to efficiently start writing programs in Mac OS X Snow Leopard using myriad languages and put those languages together in order to create seamless applications.

Coverage Includes:

  • The Mac OS X Environment
  • Developer Tools
  • Xcode
  • Interface Builder
  • The C Language
  • The Objective-C Language
  • An Introduction to Cocoa
  • Document-Based Cocoa Applications
  • Core Data–Based Cocoa Applications
  • An Overview of Scripting Languages
  • The Bash Shell
  • AppleScript and AppleScriptObjC
  • Javascript, Dashboard, and Dashcode

Note: CD-ROM/DVD and other supplementary materials are not included as part of eBook file.


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Product Description

From the Back Cover

A solid introduction to programming on the Mac OS X Snow Leopard platform

The Mac OS X Snow Leopard system comes with everything you need in its complete set of development tools and resources. However, finding where to begin can be challenging. This book serves as an ideal starting point for programming on the Mac OS X Snow Leopard platform. Step-by-step instructions walk you through the details of each featured example so that you can type them out, run them, and even figure out how to debug them when they don't work right. Taking into account that there is usually more than one way to do something when programming, the authors encourage you to experiment with a variety of solutions. This approach enables you to efficiently start writing programs in Mac OS X Snow Leopard using myriad languages and put those languages together in order to create seamless applications.

Beginning Mac OS X Snow Leopard Programming:

  • Teaches you where to find current resources for the developer tools that come with your copy of Mac OS X Snow Leopard

  • Explores Xcode®, the application used to build Mac OS X programs

  • Walks you through designing a graphical user interface with Interface Builder

  • Shows you how application resources are stored and how applications work in multiple languages

  • Explains writing applications using the Cocoa® frameworks, Xcode, and Dashcode

  • Addresses how various scripting languages extend Mac OS X's command-line interface

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About the Author

Michael Trent is a technical reviewer for numerous books and magazine articles and the coauthor of Beginning Mac OS X Programming with Drew McCormack.

Drew McCormack is an experienced computational scientist, founder of the "The Mental Faculty"—an independent company developing software for the Mac and iPhone—and the coauthor of Beginning Mac OS X Programming with Michael Trent.

Wrox Beginning guides are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved.


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beginning Mac OS x Snow Leopard Programming Feb. 18 2010
By P. Mackie - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you are an experienced programmer desiring to master developing software on Mac OS X, then this book is the one to start with. The book is particularly well written and covers all the basics of both Mac OS X application and script programming. I can't think of a better way to get starting with Mac OS X than this book for a broad understanding of programming on the Mac.

The book is particularly well written and very easy to follow (that is if you are an experienced programmer). Better "how to" dev writing than I have see in a long time. Michael and Drew are to be commended. And I am very picky about technical book readability.

These guys make the quirky Objective-C easy to understand and master.

There are more in-depth Mac OS X dev books, but, by all means, start here first.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful Book But Too Much Fluff at the Start April 13 2010
By Maros - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
All in all, this is a OK book for a beginner. The (major) problem is this is one of those books that throws the theory of the OS, frameworks, components, etc at the beginning.

This takes up a good amount of pages without letting the user get their hands dirty. Not only that, more fluff is taken up with images of how to work Xcode, Interface Builder, and other tools. Still, without the user really getting their hands dirty.

In the end, You'll be trudging through a total of just over 144 pages before you get to Chapter 6: C Programming. Now to be fair, once you get there the book starts to shine. After a quick delve into 'C', Chapter 7: Objective C begins on page 229. Then Cocoa & Doc-Based & Core-Data (pg 291).

A (short) Overview of Scripting Languages begins on page 389, which leads into BASH (pg 425). Lastly, AppleScript (pg 487) & (Dashboard) JavaScript are Discussed (pg 553). The Appendix (etc) begins on pg 591.

I think the best audience for this book are the ones with some programming experience who won't freak out over a different GUI API/OS. (Like myself.) These are the people that will immediately go to the sections they need and make the most of it. (And then read the fluff if desired.) Because it's divided into multiple programming languages the handling is somewhat (understandably, IMO) cursory, but fairly passable.

It's more at a 3.5 rating if taken in this context. However, dropped to flat 3 because of the overload of fluff at the beginning.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well-organized, great introduction April 17 2011
By Pete - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a great introduction to programming on Mac OS X. It's much longer than the Isted book Beginning Mac Programming (Pragmatic Programmers), but it's explanations are much better. Isted gets readers right into projects but doesn't spend the time to explain the reasoning behind some of the concepts his projects rely on. Trent and McCormack, by contrast, spend the first half of their book building these concepts (often from their roots in the fundamental C language), to show how they develop into OOP with higher-level Objective-C 2.0 language and Cocoa frameworks.

The Isted book will have you developing GUI and apps right away, but it's harder to generalize his presentation to new apps. This book, because of the time spent developing the concepts, sets its readers up much better to develop their own apps. It's worth the extra time it takes-- by the end of the book, you understand enough to get your own ideas started.

Full source files are presented in the text(!) and available for download. Examples are presented in complete form, so that each example stands on its own, rather than building on some code you may forget to include from a previous chapter.

Since this is an intro text it spends a lot of time developing the ideas of Objective-C/Cocoa from their roots in C, which means that it doesn't have time to get to some of the more advanced topics the language and framework allow. On the other hand, it introduces readers to most (all?) programming options available on the Mac, from Unix command line interface and shell scripts, right on through Applescripts and developing Mac GUI applications.
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow - SOLID background info book March 21 2012
By OverToasty - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Fantastic "Solidify-er Book"! Probably not quite for the total beginner ( despite the title ) but excellent for somebody with novice to pro programming experience. It's perfect for those who need some SOLID background knowledge without "reading the dictionary", or even just a "tune-up"; for instance, the C review chapters alone are absolutely essential if you're coming from Java and need to get into Obj-C - Java heads trying to get into Obj-C without this background are in for many, many nights of hair-pulling and a deer-in-headlights sense of mystification.

Can't say enough about this book, really cleared up a lot of things - and pointed out a lot of possibilities on OSX that I hadn't realized existed, as it treats OSX as a complete platform, not just an Obj-C cocoa programming environment. ( scripting etc )

Hopefully they'll update it for Mountain Lion, but even as it is, it's still very relevant.
7 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deserves 10 starts May 31 2010
By Robert D. Glover Jr. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I began reading this on my Kindle 2, but switched to reading it on my iPad in the iPad Kindle application.
On the iPad, this book as fabulous. It is such a pleasure to turn the pages instantly with my finger, and see the illustrations bright and clear. Reading this on the Kindle 2 was not very good because your mind is racing but meanwhile it takes so long to turn the pages that it's not realistic to flip back to re-read passages, and the illustrations are hard to see and don't look natural.
I have the Kindle edition of this book (running on my iPad) next to my Mac. I refer to it as I do the exercises on the Mac.
For a veteran programmer who knew almost nothing about the Mac, this book is exactly what I needed.
I find the book meticulously written and organized, with no misprints.
My only complaint, and really it is okay I don't mind all that much, is that the concluding code exercises in the "C" and the Objective C chapters were rather long. However on the iPad it is so effortless to flip back and forth between pages that it really was not a problem.
I definitely prefer reading this on the iPad (in the iPad Kindle app) than I do flipping through the pages of a real hardcopy of the book. If all you have is a physical Kindle, I think you are better off buying the book in hardcopy.
The author(s) really, really know what that are writing about. There is not one word in this book that does not seem authoritative and written by somebody who writes code themselves and knows Apple programming very well.
I have read all the chapters except the three chapters on Cocoa. I stopped reading the first Cocoa chapter so I could go back and re-read the chapter on Interface Builder. Now I have resumed reading the first of the chapters on Cocoa and it makes a lot more sense to me now.
I hope to read this wonderful book several times.
It had an entire chapter on bash and on Unix commands, which I found to be a superb way to brush up on my unix skills. The chapters on Ruby and on Python were good too. These authors really know how to move a story along and stick to the important things. I thought the chapter on Objective C was much easier to understand than the introductory material on the Apple developer site.
I am reading this book as preparation for attending the June 7 to 11, 2010 Apple worldwide developers conference in San Francisco. Armed with the knowledge from this book, I feel I am ready for the conference.
In summary, I recommend this book for non-Apple programmers who have a little Unix background but know practically nothing about programming the Apple way. Forty or so hours spent with this book is time very well spent.

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