7/4/2009 Dummies Book – deadlocked!

I entered  huge amount of coding when I followed the steps in chapter 8 of the Dummies book. After each time I entered the code for that step, I carefully checked the code. After finishing chapter 9, I compiled the code and it generated 20 errors. It wasn’t simply the amount of code to enter in, but switching back and forth from the header file and the main file that makes it hard to double-check. (These projects generate a lot of pages, and you need to enter the code in the right page and after the right code, usually a header page and a main page.) When you jump around like that, it makes it harder to check your code at a later point.

At one point near the end of the chapter (page 163), it did not tell me on which page to add the code! Perhaps that helped generate the errors. I don’t know.

In addition, on page 164 the author started talking about some “#pragma” code added earlier in figure 8-9. Looking there, I saw no mention of “#pragma” at all. Is this code missing from the book? Frankly, I’m ready to stop using this book and look elsewhere.

A day or two ago, I found a code file in the Apple site that seem to do exactly what I have been looking for in my project, a Simple Drilldown script. I downloaded it and will check it out soon. I also found an old site that gave some very good explanations for C/Objective-C coding that I have not found explained before. It helps clear up the syntax used in the Objective-C books. I’ll have to go back and take notes.

I also found another site with many step-by-step iPhone programming tutorials that have the coding I’ll need for my project. I’ll check out their version in addition to the Apple version.

I’m building up a good number of helpful links related to iPhone development. I’ll have to open a Delicious bookmarking account later and categorize all the links. That way all the links will be accessible at home and work.

One problem I’ve seen with these step-by-step books and online tutorials: They tell you to write this code snippet, then include that class. But they don’t tell you how they arrived at the right code to put there. Why not tell us the process they follow that brings them to choosing the right code snippets for the program? I would love to see that process explained. They are giving us the fish instead of teaching us how to fish on our own.

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