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Programming in Objective-C

4.2 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0672325861
ISBN-10: 0672325861
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Programming in Objective-C is a concise, carefully written tutorial on the basics of Objective-C and object-oriented programming. The book makes no assumption about prior experience with object-oriented programming languages or with the C language (upon which Objective-C is based). And because of this, both novice and experienced programmers alike can use this book to quickly and effectively learn the fundamentals of Objective-C. Readers can also learn the concepts of object-oriented programming without having to first learn all of the intricacies of the underlying procedural language (C). This approach, combined with many small program examples and exercises at the end of each chapter, makes it ideally suited for either classroom use or self-study. Growth is expected in this language. At the January 2003 MacWorld, it was announced that there are 5 million Mac OS X users and each of their boxes ships with Objective-C built in.

About the Author

Stephen Kochan is the author and coauthor of several bestselling titles on the C language, including Programming in C, Programming in ANSI C, and Topics in C Programming, and several Unix titles, including Exploring the Unix System and Unix Shell Programming. He has been programming on Macintosh computers since the introduction of the first Mac in 1984 and wrote Programming C for the Mac as part of the Apple Press Library.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Sams (December 18, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0672325861
  • ISBN-13: 978-0672325861
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,544,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book is the most lucid book on programming I have ever read. Having a little (self-taught) experience in C, this book was recommended to me as a good foundation before trying to learn Cocoa for programming on Max OS X. I fully expected to be confronted with the sort of doorstopper that I would never finish, as has been the case with several C++ books; instead, I found a straightforward, uncluttered guide, written by somebody with a genuine talent for teaching.

The author takes the approach of not trying to teach you C first, and this has two advantages: first, if you have no C experience, you get started immediately learning Objective-C, so you don't get taught one thing only to be told to forget it later; second, if you do have some C experience, you are thrown into object-oriented programming right from the start. The explanations are consistently concise but clear, and I found myself getting through a chapter or two every night after work and feeling that I was learning something significant on every page. I read someone describe it elsewhere as "Teach Yourself Objective-C in 21 Days," except that this book really could live up to such a title. I wholeheartedly agree - it took me only three weeks to work through the whole book, including nearly all of the exercises. If, like me, you have seen terms such as "polymorphism", "inheritance", "instance method" and "subclassing" bandied around only to stare at them in mute incomprehension, this book is a revelation.
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Format: Paperback
While I am a veteran C programmer and trainer, I had never had the time to investigate Objective-C. Even though I had encountered many references to it over the years, and had a few people tell me I needed to check it out, I just never got around to looking at it. Part of the reason was that I never was able to find a book that I really wanted to read, until now.
This book takes you from the start, but wastes little time in stepping through the fundamentals of the language. If you do not know C, it will bring you up to speed quickly. If you are experienced in C, but not in object-oriented programming, then you can easily skim through the introductory material to extract the points of interest. For those who have a higher level of experience, there is an extensive treatment of some of the foundation framework set classes. A small set of exercises is at the end of each chapter, so it could be used as a textbook.
A good solid introduction to a version of C that is object-oriented and that has some syntactical features different from standard K & R C, this book will serve you well if your interest is either self-education or using it as a textbook.
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I suggest reading this book as a prelude to a book on programming using Cocoa and objective C. I think an especially good match is to read this book (or even the 1st half of it) and then start in with Hillegass' book, then possibly supplement that with "Cocoa Programming" by Anguish, et al. The main strength of Kochan's book is that he teaches Objective C, just Objective C, and that the only tool you need to confront is the commandline. This is much simpler than cranking up Xcode and Interface builder to tackle full-blown Mac Cocoa applications.
My only gripe with this book is the use of "free" rather than retain/release for memory management. This is completely foreign to how things work in Cocoa, and I think it was a mistake to do it this, since you'll just learn to do it differently once you move on to Cocoa, and the point of this book, for me at least, was to get an Objective C grounding for Cocoa. SInce the logical role for this book is to get beginners ready for Cocoa, I think the memory management should have followed standard Cocoa procedures.
Despite this gripe, this is a very useful book for starting in with Objective C and a very reasonable introduction to object oriented programming.
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Format: Paperback
Finally!!!Finally a book that teaches how to write Objective-C programs without knowing C or having to learn Cocoa. I've been waiting for a book like this for a long time. Kochan explains all of the concepts of Objective-C and OOP so clearly using lots of examples. The second part of the book, which covers the Foundation Framework justifies the price of the book alone. I particularly liked the chapter on memory management, which clearly explains the autorelease pool and how it works. This book is a must read for anyone who wants to learn how to write programs in Objective-C, even if you already know C. Now I'm ready to learn how to write Cocoa programs!
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Format: Paperback
I am a Visual Basic developer by trade but I switched to using a Mac at home a while ago. As a programmer I wanted to start writing applications for my Mac and I wanted to use Apple's own development tools. However, having no knowledge of C or C++ seemed to be a major stumbling block since most Objective-C or Cocoa books assume existing knowledge. Stephen is gracious enough to write his book for those of use who do not and his book is all the better for it. The chapters are presented in manageable blocks so that it is easy to sit down and work through an entire chapter without being shut away for hours and hours and everything is clearly laid out and explained in enough detail to be informative whilst not dumbing everything down excessively.

My only gripe, which is not really Stephen's fault, is that I think that I will also need a dedicated Cocoa book to take things further but, as a guide to Objective-C I really cannot recommend this book highly enough.
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