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Showing 1-10 of 42 reviews(5 star)show all reviews
45 of 45 people found the following review helpful
on July 13, 2011
The first edition of this book was already superb.

One of the very few programming books that are both easy to read, have interesting, fun and useful exercises, and lead one to understand not only the language and frameworks, but also the underlying reasoning and concepts.

Maybe the best programming book I've ever read. I just bought the second edition, even though I don't really need it anymore: I've finished the first book and know how to solve my problems in objective-c, where to find further information, and what questions to ask. But I wanted it as an eBook, I was curious how much has changed, and I wanted to show my gratitude.

If you're wondering whether to buy it as an ebook or on paper, I'd suggest the paper edition. I think it has better layout, and the index is good enough that you don't really need the search feature an ebook provides.

Note: This book is much more suited for working through from the beginning than just looking stuff up. Do yourself a favor, start at the beginning, and do the quick exercises, even if you've already hacked together your first "Hello World" in Objective-C. There is a lot of very useful background information you'd otherwise miss, that will make your life much easier later on.

NOTE: iOS 5 is due to be released in the fall (or so). Some may think they should wait and then get books about iOS 5, because this one might be obsolete by then. Let me tell you, don't bother waiting. All the information in this book is still going to be helpful (even the stuff on retain and release; it's good to know a little background), and this book will prepare you to deal with the new stuff in iOS 5 on your own.

Do yourself a favor and get this book before you burn your fingers on other ones.

(Sorry for my english; I'm not a native speaker)
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on July 4, 2011
I have purchased a many books on iOS programming and can say that this book is the top of the heap. I have both the first and second edition; the expanded coverage in this book places it well above other publications. This book uses the latest development environment Xcode 4 and is allows readers to create complete applications as well as providing explanations of concepts and theory.

Although there are many tutorials available online, these resources provide minimal explanations on how the code actually works. This book provides clear and concise examples and explanations of how the code actually works. It will prepare you to write your own applications.

The authors support their publications by providing forums for readers to ask questions and the authors are actively involved in providing answers. It shows their level of commitment and involvement in helping developers master the content.

I feel I hit the jackpot by reading this book and look forward to other publications by the Big Nerd Ranch.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on June 28, 2011
So far this is what I like:

1. A lot more detail than the previous version, but still straight to the point.
2. It has better figures (e.g.. MVC Pattern, Preprocessing, Redrawing views, Lifecycle of a view controller, etc ).
3. Use of activity and other flow diagrams.
4. Added legend to some of the objects diagrams.
5. The source in-line comments has better detail.
6. Better detail on using Apple's documentation section (pp. 103).
7. XCode 4 updated.
8. includes a handy Xcode Quick Reference Card.
9. The book binding it seems to be stronger (On my previous book, I have to use marine glue to keep it together).
...

Still no OpenGl. But I think this topic will need a book on itself.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 31, 2011
I am a Microsoft developer and have never really worked on a Mac, developed for one nor do I own an iPhone or an iPad. I can hear the snickers and the calls to climb out from under my rock already :P

I read this book since I saw it as a challenge to try and learn something that I have heard is relatively difficult to do and not have the ability to try out the hands on coding that I enjoy. Having been the first iOS development book I've ever read I felt Aaron and Joe did a great job of relating concepts and patterns that are applicable across development practices. The diagrams they provided to illustrate their information were well done. The "For the more curious" sections within the chapters provided good additional information for those wanting more details regarding the material pertainent to the chapter.

Aaron and Joe's writing style for this book was very encouraging for a beginning iOS developer. There were a couple of times in the book where it felt that they were right there to pass along their confidence in learning the material. "Take a deep breath and wait it out. We'll get there and so will you" is an example of this to address the frustration that you as a developer will feel starting out developing in something you are new to. I can relate to this very well in watching new developers as they learn their trade.

If I were to start development for the iPhone or iPad I would recommend to have this book as a good starting point. Even without having the ability to try out the code I feel I could confidently with the material Aaron and Joe provided.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 4, 2011
This is an excellent book. I unfortunately did not read closely enough, and did not realize it would not cover the upcoming iOS 5 and the 4.2 version of Xcode still in beta. I got an email from Aaron Hillegrass explaining that they cannot because of the NDA. To others that do not read the back cover closely enough and are likely to jump to unfortunately conclusions based on the timing of the release, be warned. It's a pain to follow along based on some changes Apple has made, and some newer topics, like automatic memory management are not addressed (because of the NDA). However, I can't blame the authors for this.

I started with another book, and for me at least this one was much preferable (although the other one is not bad either). They do a good job here of introducing conceptual material alongside the hands-on programming.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on August 9, 2011
This is third book I have purchased on iOS application development, and I pretty much consider it a bench mark for other authors/publishers to follow.

This first title I purchased (Learning iPhone Programming) merely scratched the surface, so when I initially started working through this title I was a little confused as the concepts were shown rather differently. Rather than just creating projects using Xcode's built in templates (like the afore mentioned title), you are shown how to create the various views/controllers programatically which gives you a better understanding behind these concepts.

There are also plenty of diagrams included which help give you an understanding as to how the projects you build are held together using Apples preferred programming model MVC, as well as diagrams which simply help to get the points in the text across to the reader.

If I have one minor criticism, it would be that not every piece code is explained (the majority is), but then I guess that is what Apple's documentation is for, so I am probably expecting everything to be handed to me on a plate.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 16, 2011
I've worked through about a half of the book until now and I love it.
This teaching technique is very effective: you go through the chapters and there are mini projects that you have to do, from scratch, without using the templates, in order to really understand what's going on. Often you have "challenges" for which you have to go dig through the documentation so you get a good understanding of how this documentation is structured and how to proceed when you need to find something in it. In my opinion, this "go check out the documentation" thing is worth big bucks, because there's no way a book can teach you every little thing out there. So being able to find it all by yourself is essential. This book teaches this skill.
It has nice diagrams to help you understand the structure of a project you're going to do, and for all the hands on things you have detailed explanations and pictures.
I'm looking forward to finish the book and do my own projects. A big "thank you" to the authors! Great job guys!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on August 11, 2011
I had given up trying to learn iOS/Objective-C through Apple's own provided content. I have been programming for over 20 years so I knew the material provided was not good, since I am a pro in the ins and outs of programming, so just needed an easy walk through and this was it. Highly recommended and three of my other friends have already bought it too and like it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 6, 2011
iOS Programming (2nd Edition) does a great job of giving you an initiation into Xcode 4 and iOS 4. You immediately dive into coding with good, detailed information but without explaining everything. This gets you up and running and gives you some momentum by explaining the pertinent details for the chapter but leaving the other information for later chapters.
One of my favorite features in this book was that they do not use the default templates. Instead, you create a basic NSObject class and then add all the things that would normally be added by the IDE. This gives you a clear understanding (with their explanations) of what these elements do and what they are for.
iOS Programming also adds a lot more detail, charts, and images from its 1st edition predecessor. The extra material alone is worth buying the second book over the first one, even if you can get a cheaper price on the 1st edition. The 2nd ed will provide you with information on the latest (as of this book [iOS 4.0]) API calls and a great tutorial on Xcode 4 (the 1st edition was written for Xcode 3 and the changes between 3 and 4 are very significant).
The clear way in which the material has been presented in this book along with the real-world exercises that use features that belong in every app has made reading/working through this book a joy and something I look forward to when I get home from where (where I've been programming all day).
This book is great and I look forward to my next book that I plan on reading by the Big Nerd Ranch, Advanced Mac OS X Programming, which is my real interest, though iOS programming gave me a great background in Objective C and the iOS API. Advanced Mac OS X Programming (2nd Edition of Core Mac OS X & Unix Programming)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 2, 2011
Definitely the best guide I found for Iphone development, one can find all sorts of stuff on the web but I think having a good book that explains everything clearly, is best. I went thru the book from cover to cover, one gets a real sense of accomplishment seeing things coming together. Its surprising how much this book covers - within a few chapters one is using GPS and the accelerometer. The book goes onto to cover blocks, graphics, http and parsing....and much more. As the author states each chapter could be a book in its own right, but the book covers enough details to allow one to use them effectively.
Good advice is found throughout the book on how to proceed as an iPhone (aka IOS) developer. However, Apple are making changes that could render some aspects out-of-date before you finish reading...IOS5 due to released soon, updates to Xcode. Fortunately the bignerd forums already have info about IOS5, and I suspect the underlying principles would still be valid. The most valuable knowledge I gained from using the book is an understanding of the libraries and frameworks available to a IOS developer, I imagine I will be coming back again and again to remind myself about things I have learnt.
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