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Xcode 4 Cookbook Paperback – 23 May 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (23 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184969334X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849693349
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.3 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,006,662 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Steven F Daniel

Steven F. Daniel is originally from London, England, but lives in Australia.

He is the owner and founder of GENIESOFT STUDIOS (http://www.geniesoftstudios.com/), a software development company based in Melbourne, Victoria, that currently develops games and business applications for the iOS, Android, and Windows platforms.

Steven is an experienced software developer with more than 13 years of experience developing desktop and web-based applications for a number of companies including, insurance, banking and finance, oil and gas, and local and state government.

Steven is always interested in emerging technologies, and is a member of the SQL Server Special Interest Group (SQLSIG) and the Java Community. He has been the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of SoftMpire Pty Ltd., a company that focused primarily on developing business applications for the iOS and Android platforms.

He is the author of Xcode 4 iOS Development Beginner's Guide, iOS 5 Essentials, and iPad Enterprise Application Development Blueprints.

You can check out his blog at http://geniesoftstudios.com/blog/, or follow him on twitter at http://twitter.com/GenieSoftStudio.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Iv had a quick glance through this book and it is pretty much as it says on the tin - it teaches you how to implement specific recipes and gives you a tutorial on each so you get to grips with it. It also gives an explanation on "how it works" just to help with your understanding.

I would say its not ideal for complete beginners and more suited for people who have got a reasonable grip with Xcode and are ready to take it to the next stage beyond the basic level where they are beginning to feel more confident and familiar with the programme.

There is a lot to this book and I would be lying if I said iv been through it all (its over 400pages) but you know your getting a reasonable amount of information with this for the price. It will take you a while to get through each recipe so its not going to be something your done and dusted with early.

I am not really aware of any other recipe books like this so if you want to get to better grips with more of the functionality of xcode I would check this book out. Ensure you are use to xcode a little first however and are committed to trying these recipes out as they will take a fair bit of time to implement I imagine.

Overall - does what it says on the tin!

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By mko on 25 July 2013
Format: Paperback
When it comes to the content of this book, I would vote here for something between three and four stars. Why? Well, first off all, the idea of the book is really good. Sometimes, you simply don't fell like getting through all the details is a right thing to do. Sometimes, all you need is just a quick recipe of how to do things. But, as I said, quick recipes are all you want. And here come drawbacks of some of the recipes in this book. They are simply too long. At some point you just feel like you have lost a track of what's really happening (e.g. Building iCloud application - this recipe has 50 steps!). Of course, this is just an extremum. On the other hand, you have very useful recipes (very short ones) regarding instrumentation. OK, you just get some basics in case of this topic, but if you haven't used Instruments never, ever before, it will be just enough.

There is one more thing I haven't found quite useful. Recipes that focus on building applications. The point here is, that this kind of stuff shouldn't come into this book in a first place. This kind of approach focuses too much on the overlay architecture rather than on small pieces.

On the other hand, there is a part that I strongly advice to people who are starting their experience with XCode, iOS and all that stuff. That is, "Packaging and Deploying Your Application". If you try to do it by yourself, it becomes something that you will remember for your life :) And, this is the place where this book should definitely, help you.

For me, personally, this book is not a cover to cover one. I have found here few nice ideas, but I can't say that all the topics and their explanations where breath takers. Some of there where simply too long, some of them where just right, and some of them really surprised me in a positive way.

One more remark. This book is a typical cookbook, so, do not expect deep and detailed analysis of the topics.

For me, this book is like 3-4 stars.
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Format: Paperback
The Xcode 4 Cookbook (by Stephen F. Daniel) is the most misleadingly named titled that I've read in a while. If you're after an Xcode 4 Cookbook and you're planning a little Mac OS X development then, make no mistake, you're in the wrong place. If you're after an iOS Cookbook (that name is already taken hence, I suppose, this title) then read on - this book might be right up your street.

The start of the book isn't, it must be said, all that promising. There are inaccuracies, and the first sections are just plain confusing. For example, despite what the book says, Xcode is not installed in the /Developer folder anymore and Xcode hasn't been installed in the /Developer folder for some years now.

As for the confusion, I can only conclude that Stephen Daniel wasn't entirely certain how to start his book. I sympathise. I wasn't entirely certain how to start this review, and that's a far smaller undertaking. In the beginning the book is tantalisingly vague and introduces concepts without explaining their purpose.

We are told 'It is worth mentioning that, if you set the StatusBar option to None, it does not mean that our application will start without a status bar.' Sadly, it doesn't seem to be worth explaining why this is the case. It is in instances like these that a little more explanation would be nice, especially with regard to what is going on under the bonnet.

Concepts like 'Strong' and 'Nonatomic' are introduced in the first chapter without actually explaining their purpose. Bizarrely, they are introduced in a 'Hello World' program, a program that I had always understood should be as simple as possible. I appreciate and understand the style of an experienced developer, but a newbie needs to be eased in gently.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Anybody a good definition of a (coding) recipe? 11 Aug. 2013
By Otto van Verseveld - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The title of the book may be misleading, because a Cookbook should IMHO show individual
(independant) recipes on how to accomplish tasks to 'prepare' a specific app the user has
in mind. A lot of recipes show how to use the Xcode-IDE, which have nothing to do with
coding-practices but mere an explanation of the IDE-wizards / menu-settings.

Quite a number of recipes can also be found by exploring accompanying doc sets using
Xcodes builtin Organizer>Documentation browser. Even a recipe for enabling or using the
'Show Quick Help Inspector' is absent!?
If you want to start at a specific recipe, it is not immediately obvious that results of
other recipes are to be used. At the end of a recipe you may find in the 'See also...' a
reference to other recipes. The 'cooking' experience could be much improved when these
references are put at the beginning of the current recipe.

Some recipes conclude in the 'How it works...' section with
"In this recipe, we gained an understanding of XX"
without even showing any working code, screenshots or explaining the XX feature at all!?
After reading through following recipes the XX feature may become clear to the reader.

Mentioning in 'About the Reviewers' people with 20 - 55 years of programming experience
didn't prevent the book having serious errors found in the first chapter
('using the command key' iso 'using the control key') and downloadable example code with a
number of compile errors or even crashing my Xcode. I doubt if the mentioned technical
reviewers even tried part of the books code to compile or run at all!

Chapter 10, Packing and Deploying Your Application, concludes with a short but fairly good
description on how to prepare and deploy your application for submission to the AppStore .

Although the idea of the cookbook is interesting, for the novice iOS-coder its not the
best one to start with. Some chapters have to be read from A-to-Z to get a better under-
standing on how things work, and are definitely not suited to start with one specific
recipe, because while working on a recipe you have to go to (or use the result of) other
recipes as well.

Finally I'ld suggest to add an Appendix in which the Xcode (or llvm) differences,
especially on the topic concerning @property, @synthesize, __weak are explained. On my
latest Xcode 4.6.3 I had to fix quite a number of issues from the downloadble example code
to get things working.
From Start to Finish, stays on track! 25 Jan. 2014
By Bill Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
I've never used Xcode or developed a mobile application, I typically work with C++ and found the syntax to be about the same which was very helpful. Setting up in Chapter 1 was a breeze and incredibly easy following the steps listed presented little challenge, the simulator was a neat addon that is actually priceless. I liked jumping right into user interactions because that's where everything should happen, everything is focused on the end user. I felt the author did a very good job of relaying the information and it was fun building the initial app, if your like me and noticed the 2011 stamp on the source code don't panic everything worked out fine. This book was geared towards experienced users yet going in with nothing I learned a lot from this book. The why it and how sections always rank high for me, it's the best way to keep the reader involved while learning new material.

Lastly the 2nd half of the book is priceless with the social media recipes, if you've navigated their API documentation you can appreciate these sections even more! I wouldn't skip these because getting social is a huge bonus to apps these days. Twitter was pretty easy, Facebook had more things to fill in but overall it was painless using the book as a guide. I enjoyed this book very much and appreciated the learning experience, if your looking to get into iOS development this book is for you!
Quick and Easy Recipes for iOS Apps 13 Aug. 2013
By Patrick Chin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is for people new to iOS (iPhone, iPad) programming. It covers all the stages of creating an iOS app from installing Xcode to submitting an app to the App Store. Despite the title, the book doesn't concentrate on Xcode so much as iOS programming.

I like recipe books because they organize the content into short and digestible pieces and I can jump to the parts that interest me. The recipes in this book are accompanied by plenty of screenshots and figures. The recipe steps are followed by an explanation plus links to related recipes in the book and more in-depth information on the web.

There are a variety of topics addressed by the recipes: basic UI controls, Storyboards, Xcode instruments, maps and location services, iCloud integration, multimedia and graphics, CoreData and social networking services.

All the code samples are in Objective C but there is no section on Objective C. You'll need to consult another source for that.

There are no general client-server networking recipes but there is a recipe to connect to Facebook and another to connect to an iOS device via Bluetooth.

I did spot some errors in the book which will trip up beginners:

p24, step 3 - command key should be control key.

p27 - "Since we created our outlets, you will notice that Interface Builder has also created each of our outlets and have declared these within our ViewController." - When I tried this I didn't see the generated @synthesize statements in the .m file.

p29 - [UIColorblueColor] should be [UIColor blueColor].

p178 - [myDocument alloc] should be [UIDocument alloc]

From following the recipes in this book a beginning iOS programmer can get a functioning app up-and-running in no time. It's a good starting point to get your feet wet in iOS programming.

Full disclosure: I was given a free copy of the book to review.
Decent Workbook and Reference 9 Aug. 2013
By Stephen S. - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I just started learning Xcode after taking a few of the online iTunes classes about building IOS applications, which are also quite good. I've only worked through the first couple of chapters of this book. Like a previous reviewer I found that there were a couple of deprecated API's, and I found a typo here and there. That doesn't make much difference if it isn't in code, but it can be a little problematic if you are a newbie and you are copying code. I was able to download the code samples from the web site, and that was very helpful.

Being a newbie, I found it helpful to work through the first couple of chapters a couple of times to get a better understanding of what is really going on. The first run through was really just mechanical in terms of using the Xcode IDE and getting the code right. It is really intended for people who have some prior experience with Objective-C programming. My experience with that is pretty basic.

I got a .pdf version of the text, which is actually pretty nice. The illustrations are decent and I can copy code from the .pdf directly into the XCode environment, although I found it more useful to actually type it initially just to familiarize myself with the syntax and conventions.

I haven't worked through the examples in the later chapters, yet.

Overall it is a nice book. There is something to be said for having a digital version, e-book or .pdf if you plan on working through all of the code examples and building them all in XCode.
A good reference guide 31 July 2013
By Clifford Peters - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The iOS platform is a large and exciting field. In order to develop on the iOS platform, you need Xcode. Learning to use Xcode on your own can be a challenge. The Xcode 4 Cookbook (book information from publisher at [...] can help you get familiar with getting tasks done using Xcode 4 and iOS 6. This book takes the approach of "learn by doing", and dives right into showing you how to create applications that work on the iOS device.

This book presents to you a series of recipes, a short section of step-by-step instructions aimed at accomplishing a specific goal. The book can be read as a textbook or as a reference guide. For those of us with little Xcode experience, starting at the beginning may be the best place to start. With those with previous knowledge of Xcode may find themselves starting on a later chapter.

The content of this book is organized into chapters. Each chapter has a theme, such as integrating your application with Twitter. Each chapter contains many recipes. When read in order, we are shown how you can start from nothing and end with a working application. However, each recipe can be read out of context from the rest of the chapter.

I quite liked how this book was quick to show results. With so much to learn about Xcode, it was great to be guided through actually building an application. For me, trying to learn by reading the documentation was not helpful in giving ideas on how to actually create an application. This book first shows you how to complete the task and then when needed provides links to the Apple Documentation for those who want to learn more about what is being discussed.

There is one downside to quick and easy step-by-step instructions. Sometimes trying to follow a step would not produce the same results the book did. Without additional information I was left to investigate the answer. However, often by simple pressing on and reading additional recipes in the chapter did I finally understand what I had misunderstood before.

The best part about this book is how useful it will be in the long run. I am going to forget how to do some things and not know how to do other things. Instead of trying to search across the Internet for a suitable answer, I can simple look through this recipe book for the recipe I need. A quick read and I find my answer. If I need a code example, the assets that come with the book have the code already set up.

To summarize, this book might not be for everyone. If you are a beginner perhaps you may want to try a beginners guide. However, if you have programmed before, this book can help you learn by doing. The quick access to answers makes this book a great resource to have with you as you venture out and build your own iOS applications.

I did receive a free copy of the book for this review.
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