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iPhone Open Application Development--New from O'Reilly: Learn How to Write Applications for the iPhone

April 1, 2008

With its release in 2007, the iPhone became the instant darling of everyone who saw it, including the open source community, which promptly sought to push the device to the limits of its capabilities. "Within a very short time, several hackers (including myself) had gained access to the iPhone's operating system and designed a full blown SDK around it," recalls Jonathan Zdziarski, author of iPhone Open Application Development (O'Reilly, US $39.99). "Today, the open source community surrounding the iPhone has helped thrust the device into the spotlight--with more than two million iPhones having been enabled for third-party applications. Hundreds of great applications now exist for the iPhone, and can be downloaded over the air using a community 'Installer' application that runs right on the device."

Zdziarski, who is better known in the hacker community as NerveGas, played a key role in opening the iPhone's environment to third-party software development. His book relates the amazing feats the hacking community accomplished, and outlines the major low-level frameworks and APIs available on what formerly was a closed device. "The open source community's strong push for an open platform seems to have convinced Apple to do the same," says Zdziarski, "And Apple has released an 'official' SDK for the iPhone, providing the community now with two great paths to choose for development--enterprise and free/open source."

iPhone Open Application Development was written specifically for the very large community surrounding the open, 'free' tool chain. "However, it offers enough of a significant overlap with Apple's 'official' SDK that it will greatly benefit developers in both camps by exposing the iPhone's frameworks and APIs at their lowest-level on the device, as well as introduce readers to the many core concepts for building iPhone applications, with easy-to-understand word illustrations," says Zdziarski. The book also includes a brief primer on Objective C for proficient C/C++ programmers.

The book explains:

  • How to access the iPhone's underlying operating system
  • The makeup of an iPhone application
  • How to get the open source tool chain running on your desktop
  • The iPhone's core user interface framework, which is heavily tied to major application-level functions
  • Using the many touted iPhone features such as multitouch, hardware sensors, and gestures
  • Intercepting and handling event notifications for many iPhone-related events
  • Raw video surfaces and 3D transformations that take you deeper into advanced graphics on the iPhone
  • How to record and play simple sounds and intercept sound events
  • Advanced digital audio output using Apple's new Audio Toolbox framework
  • Advanced user interface components such as section lists, keyboards, and image manipulation

The Appendix includes a compendium of miscellaneous code examples for cool application features, such as using the camera and creating a CoverFlow®-like album browser.

For a review copy or more information please email kathrynb@oreilly.com. Please include your delivery address and contact information.

Jonathan A. Zdziarski is better known as the hacker "NerveGas" in the iPhone development community. He is well known for his work in cracking the iPhone and lead the effort to port the first open source applications. Hailed on many geek news sites for his accomplishments, Jonathan is best known for the first application to illustrate and take full advantage of the major iPhone APIs: NES.app, a portable Nintendo Entertainment System emulator.

Additional Resources:
For more information about the book, including table of contents, index, author bios, and cover graphic, see: http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/9780596518554

iPhone Open Application Development
Jonathan A. Zdziarski
ISBN: 9780596518554, 280 pages, $39.99 USD, £24.99 GBP

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