Each programmer when they begin their career as a coder remembers the original platform they started with.
For me it was an Atari 400 with the membrane keyboard. I had no storage device and I used Atari BASIC as my first language. I used to type in example programs from the Atari magazines and run their little games that used player missile graphics. Programming was a lot of fun back then and I will always remember it fondly.
Years later I am no longer using the Atari, mores the pity, but a production programmer in Windows using â??Câ?? and Visual Studio. I like the new mobile device programming platforms and all of the documentation that goes with it. The following is a brief explanation of both platforms and some of their attributes.
This will help you decide on whether to start developing for iOS or Android.
For the Apple mobile device programmer the choice is clear. You must program on an Apple platform and use their toolset to create applications. There is no open anything and Apple controls the path you take. From the use of Objective-C as a language, to the iOS SDK and the XCode Integrated Development Environment (IDE), and finally submitting your application the App Store Apple has complete control. There are some porting technologies that allow a programmer to develop on a PC and then submit their pseudo code to them for recompiling on their Apple machines but the pricing can get out of line if you submit multiple compile jobs. In addition it is almost impossible to debug the code. If you are going to code for the Apple mobile suite of devices remain native.
Now, is this type of control bad? I donâ??t think so. Objective â??Câ?? is an excellent language and fits in well with the SDK. The XCode IDE is designed specifically of building apps and the emulation path is second to none. The app Store has controls in place to make sure that your app is clean and well written and offers the user a safe environment to purchase the app. All in all Apple, like everything, dots every â??Iâ?? and crosses every â??Tâ?? to ensure that from programmer to user their framework is implemented.
On the other hand the Android platform offers a myriad of choices for the fledgling app programmer. The path I chose was to use the Eclipse IDE for Java development which is the language used to program an Android mobile device. The website for setting up your programming environment gives detailed instructions in how to set up the Eclipse IDE. You need the Android software Development Kit, which comes with the emulator for testing your software.
Android is open source which brings with it the good and the bad. There are many tools, and a broad spectrum of documentation. Some of it is useful, some of it is bogus. To avoid any confusion always use the android developerâ??s website as ground zero.
I have been asked which platform is better for building apps and my answer is always the same. If you are trying to make a living writing mobile apps then go with Android. They have a much larger user base and are growing much faster than Apple. You can build a simple app and make good money with it. If you want to write beautiful apps in a wonderful work environment but make less money then go with Apple. The iOS programming environment is made with the coder in mind and offers a wonderful programming experience.
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