Beginning with Objective C programming?

Discussion in 'iOS Programming' started by Fugue, May 17, 2012.

  1. Fugue macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2011
    Hey guys.

    I won't bore you with the details, but I decided that I wanted to create some iOS applications. That was a week ago. Since then, I have scoured the web for tutorials, books, and other materials to begin to development.

    The first thing I learned was that Objective C is the language I will be learning. After another hour of searching I came to the conclusion that the best book would be the Big Nerd Ranch Guide to Objective C Programming. I gave it a try and so far I am about 1/3 of the way through and very much lost. It's not that the book is boring, it's that it doesn't go into detail explaining what each statement means (it tells us what %i or %e mean only after we have been using them for dozens or so pages).

    My frustrations are probably due to having almost no programming background except for a little Javascript and HTML that I learned back in an Introductory CS class. Which prompts the question.

    Should I start with a simpler language before delving into Obj C? Or should I try another book and take it step by step?

    Any feedback on how you learned Objective C would be appreciated. Books, websites, tutorials - anything would be helpful.
  2. throAU macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    1. Download Xcode, and sign up for a free developer account to get access to the apple developer videos.

    Watch a few of them.
    Download the objective-c language book
    Hit itunes-U and look for the Stanford Objective-C course material by Paul Hegarty
    (All of the above is 100% free)

    Buy a book, there's bunch of them out there, i found "Learning Objective-C on the Mac" by Apress to be decent.

    Objc is quite different to javascript and will seem quite wierd until it "clicks".
  3. ArtOfWarfare, May 17, 2012
    Last edited: May 18, 2012

    ArtOfWarfare macrumors G3


    Nov 26, 2007
    You should spend at least 1-3 weeks learning some C before you tackle Objective-C, I think. C code can be mixed in wherever you'd like in Obj-C.

    Here's a free set of lessons on C online. I suggest finishing everything up to "Exercise 14: Writing and Using Functions" at a minimum. Learning the rest will be helpful, but isn't necessary for moving onto Obj-C / writing apps for iOS.

    Edit: Ha... I was tired when I answered last night and forgot to give you the link:
  4. larswik macrumors 68000

    Sep 8, 2006
    When I got lost learning Objective C I stepped back to C. When I got C I then stepped back in to Objective C.

    When you learn C don't just read the book and move on. Write some C programs (This was the advice I got here couple years ago).

    I found the hardest thing to do was not learn the language, but how do I use it? When you finish a C book say to yourself "Now I am going to make a Hangman Game, blackjack or other program". How would I start that? What it the first step?

    When you grasp and use the code, problem solving becomes much easier and you can answer those questions.
  5. Tander macrumors 6502a


    Oct 21, 2011
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    Like you I am also learning to program and write apps for iOS.

    I started off trying to learn Obecj-C - but got lost very quickly. As Larswik has suggested, I went and read a book called, "Learn C on Mac - 4th edition"
  6. robvas macrumors 68030

    Mar 29, 2009
  7. Fugue thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2011
    I appreciate the advice, thanks all.

    I plan to take a look at all of the above books, the Stanford videos, and Apple's own C tutorials.

    Just wondering, is it harder to make a good looking application (something like a stock or rss app) or a simple yet beautiful game? Which requires more work overall?
  8. Tander macrumors 6502a


    Oct 21, 2011
    Johannesburg, South Africa
    Making a game would be far, far harder than a simple app.

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