Top positive review
7 people found this helpful
Good, but perhaps not for complete beginners to app inventor
on 2 August 2011
As computers get more and more easy to use the coding skills of that grew up on ZX Spectrums and Commodore 64s is being lost to the 'youth of today'. It's great then, that this knowledge is making something of a comeback with the popularity of mobile phone 'apps'.
Coding is difficult not because of the concepts, which are simple, but the arcane syntax you need to master to get the blimmin' thing to do what you want. Google's App Inventor is brilliant then, because it does all this for you. All you need is an idea, and you simply snap building blocks of code together. You can't get the code wrong, because if the syntax doesn't work then the building blocks won't fit. Brilliant.
But, you still need to start somewhere and learning about loops and decision making and so on can be a bit daunting. That's where this book comes in. Very simply explaining how to write code using App Inventor, taking you through step by step and building apps as you go.
So why four stars and not five? Well, it's not quite as clear as it could be. For example, I'd not actually come across App Inventor before receiving this book, and nowhere does it really explain what it actually is. It's assumed you've already got all the software and are raring to go. The installation of the app-writing software is explained rather perfunctorily in an appendix, and at this point i was a bit confused as to what I was actually doing.
Once you're up and running though, it's fairly straightforward. There are few niggling errors where you'll find your work doesn't quite match the examples in the book, even though you've followed the instructions perfectly but these actually help the learning process as you'll try to find out why.
So, not perfect, and you'll need a bit of patience to really get to grips with things, but this is a good book to get started with if you're already playing about with App Inventor. Good fun and recommended.