A how-to for Cocoa developers

[PROGRAMMERS REPORT, OCTOBER 22, 2002] -- The Apple Mac platform may have settled sufficiently enough to attract new developer interest. Many programmers cut their teeth on popular Macintosh toolbox software in the early days of desktop computing. But tools for Mac developers have been in flux during the protracted (10-plus-years) effort to update the Mac OS.

During his years away from Apple, company co-founder Steve Jobs focused his NEXTStep development efforts around Objective-C. That remains one of the key means to create new Mac applications, and it is heavily supported in Apple's new Cocoa programming environment.

In fact, one of the main languages developers will use to build Cocoa applications for Mac OS X is Objective-C. A new book by James Duncan Davidson, author of Learning Cocoa with Objective-C , shows developers how to start building apps using the Objective-C binding to the Cocoa frameworks.

Learning Cocoa with Objective-C (O'Reilly & Associates) eases readers into the experience of Cocoa development with an introduction to the concepts of object-oriented programming with Objective-C. Readers learn how to use Apple's Developer Tools, such as Project Builder and Interface Builder. The book introduces Cocoa's frameworks -- Foundation and the Application Kit -- by having the reader build simple applications.

Each chapter presents a different sample program for readers to build, with step-by-step instructions that teach the fundamentals of Cocoa programming. The techniques in each chapter lay the foundation for more advanced techniques and concepts presented in later chapters. Readers are shown how to build single- and multiple-window document-based applications; manipulate text data using Cocoa's text-handling capabilities; draw with Cocoa; localize applications for multiple language support; and polish off applications by adding an icon for use in the Dock, providing Help and packaging the program for distribution.

The book covers the latest updates to the Cocoa frameworks, including the Address Book framework. It also includes an API quick reference card and an appendix with a listing of resources essential to any Cocoa developer -- beginning or advanced.

Learning Cocoa with Objective-C is available from O'Reilly & Associates for $34.95. More information, including an index, author biography and a sample, are available at O'Reilly's Web site at http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/learncocoa2/

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About the Author

John K. Waters is a freelance writer based in Silicon Valley. He can be reached at john@watersworks.com.

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