iPhone SDK Development Paperback – Oct 19 2009
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About the Author
Bill Dudney is a software developer and entrepreneur currently building software for the Mac. Bill started his computing career on a NeXT cube with a magneto-optical drive running NeXTStep 0.9. Over the years Bill migrated into the Java world where he worked for years on building cool enterprise software. But he never forgot his roots and how much fun it was to write software that did cool things for normal people. Bill is back to AppKit to stay. You can follow him on his blog at http://bill.dudney.net/roller/objc.
Chris Adamson is a writer, editor, developer and consultant specializing in media software development. He is the author of QuickTime for Java: A Developer's Notebook (O'Reilly) and co-author of Swing Hacks (O'Reilly) and has served as Editor for the developer websites ONJava and java.net. He maintains a corporate identity as Subsequently and Furthermore, Inc. (http://www.subfurther.com/) and writes the [Time code]; blog at http://www.subfurther.com/blog.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Clearly written, well-organized, comprehensive (includes chapters on debugging, performance tuning and marketing). The right mix to train and guide programmers through all stages of the development and deployment of an iPhone app.
The book contains EVERYTHING from getting started to writing a Twitter client, using Core Data, the accelerometer, and the Map Kit to name a few. The early chapters feature a lot of hand-holding, which is a good thing for those new to XCode and iPhone development. The later chapters feel more advanced with less hand-holding. For my tastes, I could have used more guidance in the later chapters, but it is understandable since the later chapters feature more advanced topics.
The most exciting thing for me is my first app has now been published on the App Store! This book played an integral role in getting my app through the approval process. There is a chapter at the end of the book especially useful in this regard.
With that said, I have been waiting for this book to come out for several months, but the wait was well worth it. The authors of this book openly state that to get the most of of the book, the reader must have a solid programming foundation (though nothing too extreme) to understand what is going on. This book is not the first book on iPhone application development one should read.
The strongest aspect of this book is that it plays off the fact that readers know what they are doing, at least somewhat, and takes the extra step to explain what exactly is going on behind the scenes programmatically. I think this is incredibly valuable because other intro to iPhone development books do not seem to want to overwhelm their readers. I really learn a lot better when I know why things are occurring, and this book supplies that information. If you are serious about becoming an iPhone developer, make sure you add this book to your library because this book is definitely the best book on iPhone development out there.
Just make sure you understand Objective-C, are comfortable with xcode and IB, and have at least tinkered with the iPhone SDK before diving in.
This book would be a challenge for an absolute beginner, but not an insurmountable one. It starts off slowly, introducing you to basic concepts and building basic UI elements and simple apps. The authors quickly turn up the heat, however -- concepts that are learned in the early chapters are only repeated a few more times, then the 'hand holding' is over... you're expected to know by now to import your header files, @synthesize, etc. As a beginner, I actually *liked* this. My projects often bombed, and it forced me to think *logically* -- why did this build fail? It forced me to look at the error and consider the solution. It forced me to go back and relearn the concepts that I was simply typing out so I could move on to the next chapter's tutorial. It's a tough love (but mostly gentle) way of encouraging a beginner to learn the fundamentals instead of simply aping/mimicking what the writers' had coded. It will also save intermediate/advanced programmers from constant hand holding and let them jump straight to the heart of the project.
I really, really enjoyed the 'tone' of this book -- some writers break their necks in an attempt to sound funny/jokey/non-threatening. This is very much a professional book but still maintains a welcoming conversational tone. It strikes a 'just right' balance.
For absolute beginners -- I'd highly recommend that when you order this book and are waiting for it to ship, get to know Xcode and Interface Builder. Particularly IB, it's fun to play with and easy to dive into. Practice dragging views, making connections and adding outlets/actions, etc. It will help you get started that much more quickly once the book does arrive.
I've owned dozens of wrox, apress etc books since the 90s, and this is one of the few that I would not hesitate to recommend to both beginners and advanced programmers with no Xcode/Obj-C/iPhone dev experience. Get it -- it's that good (and the online support forum is invaluable, the authors are very quick to respond to questions).
General example. You're following along the text, and with detective work you've filled in may small gaps which they don't mention. You notice they didn't mention something in the worst way possible. You have to find out by looking at the function they mention in the text, and seeing which instance variables they have in it that you were never told to create.
It's not that they're saying, next we made some XIB files and tied them to UIViewControlers named X, Y.
I mean they literally start referencing custom classes they never mentioned before, in a function they paste into the books text.
Let me give you a concrete example:
CoreData chapter, you're going along and filling in the gaps. Then you get to the Navigation subsection of CoreData, and all of a sudden they're referencing not one but TWO new UIViewControllers ( complete with custom XIB files! ), that they never mentioned before.
How do you find out about it? Well it's in the function you're typing into your editor as you read the book.
No mention what so ever!
They refer to the downloadable source files for the sections of code, however those xcode projects are basically complete versions. So when you read it, you can't tell what you're supposed to have by now that they didn't mention, and what comes later that you should not copy.
Good book with decent info, but i think they ran out of paper and users are left to guess their way thru instead of being able to focus on the lessons.
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