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How I Got Started Developing iPad Apps

As many of you know, the iPad is becoming more popular every month, and many companies are starting to jump into the app marketplace by developing their own app. Considering I own an iPad and seeing all the different opportunities out there for learning how to develop iPad or iPhone applications, I decided to invest some time and energy into learning the language behind the scenes of iOS.

One of the methods for learning how to develop iPad apps that I started out with was my friend, YouTube consists of several YouTubers who provide various iPad and iPhone app development tutorials for helping one new to the language get started. The only draw back with this method is, you do not receive the fundamental knowledge you need to know before jumping into creating apps. By this I mean, most of the tutorials on YouTube start out by using software called, Xcode (software used to develop iPhone, iPad, and Mac applications), and they basically give you a chunk of code that you have no idea what it means or why you use it to accomplish a certain task. You also do not receive some of the basic knowledge such as, why you should follow the Model View Controller (MVC) architecture for all the applications you create. If you have some basic coding experience like I did, usually you can figure out some of the simple code snippets, but overall, most of the tutorials do not have a specific linear curriculum.

I will say, YouTube is a great source for quickly learning the iOS language and the features of Xcode, however, you will most likely want to find a recommended iPad development book that will teach you all the important core fundamentals first.

The book that I ran into that was really down to earth and easy to understand was:
Sams Teach Yourself iPad Application Development in 24 Hours. 

At the time of this post, this book is somewhat outdated due to the new Xcode software version 4.0 being released, and the new iOS 5 being released soon, however, it still explains and teaches the basic fundamentals needed for any iPad application. It also explains how to place your iPad application in the app store.

I have not completely finished reading the book, however, the chapters I have read has given me some basic skills and knowledge that has allowed me to start developing basic useful iPad applications. I still plan to go back and finish reading the rest of the chapters or purchase the updated version of the book when it is released, but for the time being, since I have learned some of the core fundamentals, I am able to teach myself how to implement other features from simply Googling, or watching YouTube tutorials.

So currently, the method I have been using to expand my iPad app development knowledge has been a combination of reading the book mentioned above, learning from online iPad development websites, Googling, and watching YouTube videos.

This method works fine for those who only wish to create basic iPad or iPhone applications, however, for more advanced features and functionality, one will definitely have to spend some time learning the Objective C language more in depth, reading iPad app development books, or reading through Apple’s online iOS Dev Center.

I’m currently working on a solar based application that I will be submitting to the app store very soon. The application will give one the ability to find quick answers for popular solar questions, learn more about solar energy, have quick access to educational solar videos, and more. It is a very large project, however, by creating a large project allows me to learn so much more since most likely I will incorporate multiple features iOS has to offer.

Overall, as stated before, if you wish to develop basic iPad or iPhone applications, going the YouTube and Google route for learning is perfectly fine in my opinion. However, if you wish to become a serious iPad or iPhone app developer, and you wish to develop applications for other companies, taking the time to learn the core fundamentals is key. 

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