Learn how to develop apps online
The expansive nature of the Internet makes it easy for all of us to become experts in what we love to do or develop new skills. This holds true for app development as well. Seeing as apps are intertwined with the Internet, there is no shortage of free and detailed resources out there to help develop your skills.
If you’re looking to learn something new or potentially make a career out of developing apps, take a look at some of the (mostly free) developer resources at your fingertips:
Google Android Developer (http://developer.android.com)
This is the official site created by Google to aid aspiring and established developers in all aspects of creating an Android app. Through this site you can learn how to manage your apps, browse code samples for every component and watch tutorials on the process of designing, developing and distributing an app. Regularly visiting this site means you can see what the next big thing in Android will be and even get to test new releases before the general public gets to see them.
Udacity – Developing Android Apps: Android Fundamentals (online course) (https://www.udacity.com/course/ud853)
This is a new resource that has been made available by Google itself to budding Android app developers. It is a course on the fundamentals of developing an Android app and spans 8 weeks. All the material provided by Google professionals can be studied free of charge. You can opt to pay a monthly fee if you want personal help from the lecturers or a verified certificate for completing the course.
There are certain requirements attached to it such as needing to download Android Studio, having a specific level of hardware to work on and having at least 3+ years programming experience in Java or other similar language. Luckily, Udacity already offers a beginner’s course in Java (amongst others) for free so you can brush up on your skills before taking on this advanced course.
This is a website that provides free tutorials not only for Android development but also for Java and Eclipse programming. Here you will find tools for people who just want to learn the basics as well as for the advanced developers amongst us. Additionally, you can find app testing tools, location API and Google Maps tutorials, and how-tos on UI design for the Android OS. Also, there are extra links that might help you find what you are looking for if you couldn’t find it on Vogella.
Both Lynda and Treehouse are subscription-based sites that give you access to professional video tutorials. These sites don’t only cover Android but a wide array of other topics so if you’re interested in something else, like CSS or animation, you will also find lessons here. Both of these sites also cover business topics which will be a great asset in future if you want to become an entrepreneur and build your own app development business. Each site also provides areas where you can practice your newfound skills and get help from other members regarding your progress.
iOS Dev Center (https://developer.apple.com/)
The iOS Dev Center is the official Apple-created site for iOS developers. Here you can download the latest development tools and SDKs, get sample code for all iOS versions, watch videos from professional Apple developers and find resources on how to develop software specifically for Apple products. There are even resources specifically aimed at educating enterprises on Apple development and giving design advice for creating iPhone, iPod and iPad cases.
Stack Overflow (http://stackoverflow.com/)
A free crowdsourced Q&A website that allows you to ask questions to professionals about any issues you are having with your development. It isn’t exclusively geared towards iOS programming but it is a very useful resource for solving any kind of programming dilemma you may run into. Before you start using this resource you have to create an account (which is free by the way). Also, make sure that you search the site before asking your question to see if someone has asked something similar before. Otherwise, simply click the “Ask Question” button in the top right-hand corner.
Are you still in the planning phase of developing your iOS app? Well, then you should give Mockingbird a try. It is a free, web-based wireframing application where you can plan out every detail of what your app will become. It works exactly like a program you would find on a Mac and you have the ability to create multiple pages. Mockingbird provides widgets you can drag onto your canvas where you can then change the colour, alignment, font size and font colour. If you’re working in a team, you can share your creation with your fellow team members.
Does your future iPhone or iPad application have a toolbar? Glyphish allows you to choose and customize icons specifically designed for iOS. You can download complete sets in a PDF and PSD file for all of the icons, as well as individual PNG files for each icon. The site is free but you need to acknowledge Glyphish when using the sets as a sort of “payment”. Otherwise you can buy a bundle of over a thousand icons for $99.