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Curious about app development but what's the barrier entry?

02-17-2010, 05:37 PM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 726
Curious about app development but what's the barrier entry?

Is any previous programming knowledge necessary? I'm actually interested in creating a twitter app as a hobby because I'm a bit disappointed with the ones out now. My current favorite is Twittelator because of the huge feature set and constant updates but the UI isn't exactly pleasing to the eyes compared to the other top twitter apps. Tweetie 2 is my second choice but I'm really disappointed to see how the developer created and charged for new app and still barely updates it (I'm aware mac users are extremely upset about the outdated client).

All I really want to do is make a constantly updated twitter app that has a good, fast UI with a robust set of features, making it feel like a complete and up to date twitter experience.

I know I'll need to spend some money on Mac hardware (and the dev license) to get started but how easy or difficult is it to learn how to develop and iphone/touch app from scratch?
02-17-2010, 06:29 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: St-Hubert (Quebec), Canada
Posts: 133
I will say that programming experience is a must if you really want to do everything by yourself, especially you are looking into making a Twitter client (which mean you will need to use some Twitter API which aren't included in the standard iPhone SDK).

If you plan on just designing the UI base on Cocoa touch then you can use Interface Builder which doesn't really require any programming experience as it has a simple drag & drop interface and some inspector to configure the different parameter. But at some point you will want to add some custom behavior and this is where programming will be require.

If you were talking about game, you could have used something like Unity or Gamasalad to do most of the work for you and do a little bit scripting to bring thing together (my friend who had no programming experience was able to do a puzzle game in Unity then learn a bit javascript to customize part of the gameplay).
02-18-2010, 02:00 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: UK / Toronto
Posts: 602
I think you'll be able to get by quite easily using Interface Builder, the Apple tutorials, and Google. Yes, you'll need a Mac.