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This is a summary of tips from the Developer forums for those that find themselves with this question...
I really want to start creating cocoa applications for the iPhone, but I know nothing about it.
Where should I start?
Thanks for the info, but I'm not there yet. Is there someplace I can learn about coding and the "Objective-C language" ??
You can enroll as a free developer initially to get an idea of things, using the link above. Then download the most current iPhone SDK.
Buy a couple of books to help you learn. The book below is huge and I learned so much from it, and I knew almost nothing until reading it. And it will last you forever as a reference to check when you're advanced.
'Beginning iPhone 3 Development: Exploring the iPhone SDK (Dave Mark & Jeff LaMarche)'
I also recommend this pdf file that I found, a good 60+ pages and extremely helpful in learning the basics:
You mentioned looking for some place to start with coding and Objective-C. This is a good idea. I think it's always smart to learn the various languages involved first, before you move to a specific platform such as iPhone. Objective-C is the language you will want to learn for iPhone development. However, keep in mind that Objective-C is just a superset of (an extension to) the C language, so trying to learn Objective-C will most likely not be realistic if you don't have a solid foundation with C first. Luckily, there are a few good books out there on Objective-C, and many on C.
There is a series of Apress books that I think you will find very helpful. The first book in the series is called 'Learn C on the Mac', and I highly recommend you read through that before going any further. You can do all your C programming right from within Xcode, so that won't be a problem, and after you finish that book you will have a good understanding of C and be ready to move on to Objective-C.
There are other good books on C such as 'Sams Teach Yourself C in 24 Hours' (a basic book on C) or 'Sams Teach Yourself C in 21 Days' (a longer and more detailed book on C) or 'Sams Absolute Beginners Guide to C' (an especially novice-oriented book on C). Also by Sams 'C Primer Plus'.
It is worth mentioning that as a supplement book for learning C (I wouldn't try to learn C from it alone), the book 'The C Programming Language (Second Edition)' by Kernigham and Ritchie is the original text on the C language, and there is much to be learned from it.
The second book in the Apress series (after you have read through Learn C on the Mac and feel you have a solid understanding of C), is called 'Learn Objective-C on the Mac'.
Finally, once you have read those two books and feel comfortable with C/Objective-C, the third and final book in the series is called 'Learn Cocoa on the Mac', and it will teach you how to use C/Objective-C in the context of the Cocoa framework.
Once you have read these books and have a good understanding of their material, taking to the iPhone should prove a very reasonable feat. It's worth noting, like the poster above mentioned, that Apress also has some additional books (in addition to the series of three I mentioned above) that are targeted toward iPhone development in specific. However, I would hold off on these until you have gone through the three on C/Objective-C/Cocoa, but that's just my opinion.
By all means start with iTunes U - download the complete video series and watch them at your own pace. No charges.
Check out ADC (Apple Developer Connection) 'getting started' lectures, many of which are from this 2009's Developer Conference.
As well, note that Apple has a free series of events being set up now (10.2009) - "iPhone Tech Talk World Tour 2009" - closes soon so act fast. ( http://developer.apple.com/events/iphone/techtalks/ )
I'm posting some links here that I think you might find helpful either now or someday down the line. The following links are from the ADC (Apple Developer Connection) website from the Mac Dev Center (they also have an iPhone Dev Center). If you haven't done so already, I would sign up for ADC and check out the Mac and iPhone Dev Centers, because they contain a lot of helpful documentation, which is where the links I'm posting came from.
While I'm pretty sure I've dug up most of the documentation links that would be useful to you, there are bound to be others that you could find that would help you, so I would recommend looking into that. I still recommend reading the books mentioned in the above post, and using them as your primary source for learning the material, but these links can provide helpful documents that can come in handy as a supplement to the books you read. I've often found that when I need extra help with something that wasn't explained sufficiently in my books, the Apple documentation can be the answer, so here are some links to Apple developer documentation that you may find of use.
These are three links on Objective-C that should be helpful when you get to that point:
• The Objective-C 2.0 Programming Language
• Object-Oriented Programming with Objective-C
• Learning Objective-C: A Primer
Here are two more links on Cocoa that should prove to be of some use later on down the road (or maybe sooner):
• Cocoa Fundamentals Guide
• Cocoa Application Tutorial
• Xcode is where you will be doing all of your actual coding, and Apple provides a good document for getting started with the basics of Xcode:
• A Tour of Xcode
Finally, Interface Builder is the other main application you will be using (in addition to Xcode) once you get further on in Objective-C and, in particular, Cocoa. Interface Builder is where you create the GUIs (the graphical user interfaces) for your user to interact with. When you are working with C (and most likely also at the beginning of your time with Objective-C), you will be working strictly from within Xcode, creating command-line utility projects, which have no GUI, so you won't need Interface Builder until later, but when you get to that point, this bit of documentation should be helpful:
• Interface Builder User Guide
• Also, it's worth mentioning these links as well. They are links to other threads, right here in the Apple forums, that have been started by people new to Mac/iPhone development, or to programming all together, so reading through them may prove very enlightening for you:
• iPhone and C
• Newbie posting request (xcode and ?)
• Becoming a Developer
• Beginner programming OSX
• Where to start?
• New to Xcode
Now would also be a good time to start planning to attend the 2010 Worldwide Developer's Conference, as they are usually packed - don't wait until the last minute if this event interests you. This is THE place to be for everything related to iPhone development and well worth the time, effort and expense if you can arrange to attend.
See the 2009 site for information and good luck with your efforts in any case.
This is the 1st version of this tip. It was submitted on November 1, 2009 by K T.
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