I have been dabbling a bit with iPhone development as a way to stretch my development skills. Unfortunately,Appleâ€™s language of choice for iPhone/iPad development is something called Objective C which, for me anyway, is a time machine straight back to 1989 or so.
Now I really have nothing against Objective C besides that fact that my brain is full and that I donâ€™t want to learn yet another language. So, when Novell announced MonoTouch last year, I was ecstatic. Here was a tool that would let me use my existing C# and .NET skills to write applications for the iPhone. That meant that all I worry about was the iPhone development environment and tools and that my hard-earned .NET knowledge would stay in place.
Documentation and examples were light at first but that void has been quickly filled by the MonoTouch team and a variety of bloggers. But what was really missing was a really great MonoTouch book. Thankfully, one arrived last week, written by some of the same folks that have been blogging about MonoTouch since beta": Wallace (Wally) B. McClure, Martin Bowling, Craig Dunn, Chris Hardy, and Rory Blyth.
Hereâ€™s a quick overview of the books contents:
- Exploring the screen controls
- Working with data, controls, and tables
- Application Settings
- Working with the device hardware
- Working with multimedia
- Talking to other applications
- Programming the iPad
- Just enough Objective C
- How to work with the Apple App Store
The book is really good at showing you the user interface as well as the behind the scenes code that makes certain things happen. For me, that really ties things together. They also show how to use the development tools to add functionality to an iPhone application while also showing how to perform the same task, strictly through code â€“ another thing that I really like.
Finally, as with all Wrox books, you can download the source to the examples found in the book. This bookâ€™s samples are found here.
This is a great book for a .NET developer who wants to branch out. Itâ€™s not huge, 350 pages or so, but it will take me a while to work my way though it as I try out the examples and get used to the new programming tools and environment.