Recommendation on Books

Discussion in 'iOS Programming' started by nixesmixes, Apr 20, 2010.

  1. nixesmixes macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2010
    Hello everyone,

    I am a graduate student so I have about 90 units in computer science and software engineering courses although most of them were taken about 10 years ago.

    I am writing an iPhone application for my graduate project.

    So far these are the titles I have purchased:

    1. Beginning iPhone Development by Mark and LaMarche
    2. iPhone SDK Development by Dudney and Adamson
    3. Programming in Objective C 2.0 by Kochan

    Do you have any other recommendations for books to purchase to help me along the process? The only programming experience I have is from school and most of it was 10 years ago being now I am a Software Engineering Major for my MS which doesn't require much programming. I have very little familiarity with C other than what I have picked up from the Kochan book and through school (1 class used C but again many years ago).

    I have been told that the Hillegrass book is a must read...what do you think? Can I get away with the second edition because you can find it for about 5 bucks?

    Should I pick up the Learn C for the Mac book or is that not necessary? I do not think my app will be using any of the underlying C features but I am not sure at this point. I understand the concept of pointers thoroughly.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated....Thank you!!!
  2. StevenHu macrumors member

    Sep 3, 2009
    Southern CA
    I have found Sams Teach Yourself iPhone Application Development helpful (it teaches by example), as well as How to Make an iPhone App, which teaches programming.

  3. MrCrispy macrumors member


    Apr 10, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    In the sam's book there are a lot of typos that result in some frustrations in getting the code to work right. Great book otherwise, mind you. I'm just sayin.
  4. StevenHu macrumors member

    Sep 3, 2009
    Southern CA
    Thanks for the heads-up! I'll be watching for them.

  5. kaydell.leavitt macrumors regular

    Apr 19, 2010
    Learn C on the Mac

    Here is a good book to get the basics of C down:

    Attached Files:

  6. nixesmixes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2010

    I am really hoping someone has some insight between second and third edition of Hillegrass because I am going to buy the book and would like to save 25 dollars if edition 3 is not necessary for my purposes.

    Thank you everyone for your comments so far...keep them coming!
  7. TiberiusXavier macrumors member

    Apr 18, 2010
    Yes, Hillegass is an excellent primer. The I-Tunes university videos (free) are good too.
  8. ethical macrumors 68000

    Dec 22, 2007
    Hopefully you got: Beginning iPhone 3 Development, and not the first one? Mind you, SDK4.0 will be around for Joe Bloggs in a few months so a Beginning iPhone 4 Development book may even come out a few months after that.

    Other than that, good choices. I use 1 and 3 (BiP3D though) at the moment.
  9. chown33 macrumors 604

    Aug 9, 2009
    on the Western Slopes, with E. A. Poe
    I think you should work through the Objective C language book first. Then you can decide what else you need.

    If you already know C, even from a while ago, then you're not likely to stumble on anything about C. You're more likely to stumble on objects and how they're implemented in Objective-C, and on memory management. Neither of those will be addressed by a C book.

    If you already know C, then any decent C language reference website will probably be good enough to get you over any difficulties. For example, I never remember exactly how to define a typedef that's a pointer to a particular function taking certain arg-types. Fortunately, that situation comes up very rarely, and there are references and examples galore that are easy to find with even apprentice-level google skills (e.g. google keywords: C typedef function pointer). I don't need to know it perfectly, because I know how to find it when I need it.

    Lining up a complete set of books before even starting with the first one is usually a waste, IMHO. Different people have different ways of learning things. Unless you're a domain expert already, or are highly cognizant of your own learning style, you can't really make an effective choice of a book. You have to apply trial and error. And if you are a domain expert, you don't need a book. And if you're highly cognizant of your own learning style, you don't need a recommendation.

    So start with the fundamental entry point, which is the Objective-C language itself, and see how that goes. If you like the author, then see if that author has a book covering the next stage, which would be Cocoa Touch. If you don't like the author, i.e. you have trouble learning from that book, try another author on the same subject. Reapply as needed.
  10. nixesmixes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2010
    I have already read the entire Objective C 2.0 book and yes I did like the author's teaching style, however he does not have any other books on Cocoa or Cocoa Touch or iPhone development that I am aware of. If I am wrong here please let me know because I would definitely pick up another book by him.

    So at this point I am looking for recommendations on books specifically written for iPhone Development and/or on Cocoa/Cocoa Touch or any other book recommendations that would be helpful with my said project.

    I am hoping somebody is specifically familiar with Hillegrass's 2nd and 3rd edition on Cocoa and can recommend whether or not I can get away with the 2nd edition instead of the third.
  11. idelovski macrumors regular

    Sep 11, 2008
  12. ataylor2009 macrumors member

    Jan 27, 2009
    Third edition is obviously more up-to-date, but if you're brand-spanking-new to iPhone development, you don't want Hillegass. There's not that much iPhone-specific information in there. And the book gets fairly advanced fairly quickly. I would avoid that one until you know more about what you're doing.

    Another one to avoid is The iPhone Developer's Cookbook by Sadun. I haven't used the second edition, but the first was basically a waste of money.

    Mark & LaMarche is a good starting point. The Dudney book is also good. The one from Dietel is very good and highly recommended. Pretty much every single line of code in that book is numbered and explained.
  13. nixesmixes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2010
    Thank you for the tips on iPhone books!

    As far as the Hillegass book what is it exactly good for? I am trying to get advanced in the sense that I would like to learn as much as possible about Cocoa so I can fully understand the foundation in which iPhone development is built. It sounds like since the third edition doesn't really cover iPhone development I can probably get away with the second edition?
  14. flyingturtle macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2010
    Wow. Didn't know Hillegass' iPhone is already out. I just placed my order on Amazon for it too. I loved his Cocoa book.

    To the OP: As far as the Hillegass Cocoa book, it's probably not necessary if just wanting to learn iPhone programming, but it's such a well-written book that it really helped me get familiar with Mac programming in general so I found it invaluable.
  15. flyingturtle macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2010
    Just a follow-up to my previous reply. I got my Hillegass iPhone book in the mail today. Yay! I just skimmed it briefly but I like what I see so far. Nice to see a whole chapter on Memory Management with some nice illustrations. A lot of other iPhone books sort of gloss over this important topic.

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