15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Excellent for learning the language beneath Cocoa
, January 20, 2009
This review is from: Learn Objective-C on the Mac (Learn Series) (Paperback)
This is a fantastic book for learning Objective-C, the language you need to know if you want to write programs in Cocoa for the Mac or iPhone. Be warned: this is not a book on Cocoa which is a framework built on top of Obj-C. You'll need to know this material to make any sense of the Cocoa or Cocoa Touch frameworks which can be daunting.
If you're brand new to programming, you should probably start with "Learn C on the Mac" because Obj-C is the C programming language with some extra functionality. Confused? If you don't have experience in C, go with this progression: "Learn C on the Mac", then "Learn Objective-C on the Mac", then a full Cocoa book such as Aaron Hillegass' excellent "Cocoa Programming for Mac OS X".
You will learn a little Cocoa in the book, as well as a bit about XCode, the freely available Mac IDE for Cocoa and Objective-C development. Having tried to learn these on my own, I can say this book is a timesaver with tips and tricks for getting things working.
If you are coming from a higher-level language such as Python, Perl, or PHP, be prepared for a little pain while you get used to it. Objective-C will be like having a strict boss after working for yourself for years; you'll need to do things such as declare your variable types, manage your objects memory allocation, and declare the return types for your functions/methods.
The authors definitely had fun writing the material and don't take themselves too seriously, and it comes across well in the material. They have done an excellent job of keeping the material fun to learn.
Note: I recently took the 7-day "Beginning Cocoa" class at the Big Nerd Ranch in Atlanta, and this book was used as the coursework for the first two days.
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