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Objective-C Programming For Dummies


Author: Neal Goldstein

Publisher: For Dummies


Publish Date: October 23, 2012

ISBN-10: 111821398X

Pages: 480

File Type: Epub

Language: English

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Book Preface

When the folks at John Wiley & Sons approached me about writing Objective-C Programming For Dummies, I thought long and hard about it. Within 480 pages, I wanted to be sure that I could explain to someone with no programming experience how to actually create useful programs.

So I started to think about what makes programming so difficult.

It isn’t the concept of how programs work, which I cover easily in Part I. And it isn’t really the language itself (or the instruction set — I cover that in Chapter 4). It isn’t even the user interface — all that code needed to open and close windows, process menus and the mouse and user touches, draw graphics, and play audio and video (did I leave anything out?). No, while all that used to be really hard, now it’s made much easier by using the frameworks available with Mac OS X and iOS.

What is really hard, after you understand the language and framework, is how you structure your program — how you actually go about taking your idea for an application and turning it into a robust Objective-C application.

Finding out how to use the tools is (relatively) easy; knowing how to use them to create a useful application is the real challenge.

So, besides explaining the instruction set and everything else involved with coding, what I do along the way is explain the other things you need to know (things like application architecture and design) — those things that will make it possible for you, when you are done with this book, to go out and start developing your first application. Nothing less.

So instead of a book that only shows you how to use all the features (instructions and frameworks) available to you, I decided to write a book that shows you both how and why. I do that by having you start to develop an application in Chapter 5 (after I go over the instruction set) and add to that same application until you end up with it running on both the iPhone and Mac in Chapters 17 and 18. Granted, this application isn’t the most exciting one in the world, but it gives you the opportunity to use every feature of Objective-C that you’ll need to know to go out and build your own killer app. What’s more, you build the application incrementally, just as a professional develops a commercial application. Occasionally, you will enter some code only to delete it later, which may seem annoying at times. However, you will get a flavor for how you’ll work when you are out on your own.

And while some development will be annoying and tedious, in general it is fun. So go enjoy yourself while you’re finding out about Objective-C. I know I do.

About This Book

Objective-C Programming For Dummies is a beginner’s guide to developing applications for both iOS devices and the Mac. You don’t need any programming experience to get started. I expect you to come as a blank slate, ready to be filled with useful information and new ways to do things. In some ways, the less you know, the easier it will be for you because you won’t have any preconceived notions about programming.

This book distills the hundreds (or even thousands) of pages of Apple documentation, not to mention my own development experience, into only what’s necessary to start you developing real applications. I explain not only the language, but also along the way, I explicitly talk about object-oriented principles and how doing things in a certain way (that is, following those principles) leads to more extensible and enhanceable programs, which you will discover is the holy grail of programming.

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