Programming for iOS

What is involved in making a very simple app for iOS? Say two input boxes to enter numbers and an output box to display the sum of the numbers. Is that level of programming achievable in a short time frame by someone with no prior programming knowledge?

It is, but the knowledge you need is about the general usage of a development tool. Go to the iOS development site and see if you can install the development tools first. I’d suggest enlisting the help of anyone who has experience using any development tool to help you through a simple example program. You might be able to do it yourself.

You might find this article interesting:

I agree with **TriPolar **that it’s probably possible. I would also suggest that it probably depends on how competent you are at synthesizing new information and using that ability to block out all the information you don’t understand.

Apple makes a My First iOS tutorial which if you follow exactly you basically will only need to adapt it by putting a + sign in the right place. However, you’ll probably feel like a novice trying to land an airplane with tons of instrumentation at your disposal and relying on an air traffic controller telling you exactly what to do.

In other words, you might get overwhelmed but there’s no reason you necessarily would and there’s no real programming required to do it.

With absolutely no programming knowledge I’d say you could do the above in about 20 hours. It will mostly be an exercise in patience as you go through a tutorial.

Do it all in Javascript.
Then, just run it in Safari. That way, you don’t need to become a developer, pay $99, or deal with the App store (unless you want this to be a commercial product).

Here’s some more information on Javascript programming on iOS:

Thanks all. I’ll actually want it to do some other stuff, but if I can get some very basic number manipulation working in good time, I’ll be less likely to lose patience with achieving the final outcome.

At the moment I’ve got a spreadsheet that does what I want but the interface is clunky.

I’ve dabbled with visual basic before but don’t know how useful that experience would be. Anyway, I’ve got an ebook on Objective-C, I’ve downloaded the iOS SDK, and I’ll investigate the Java option as well.

Javascript is very different than java, FYI. Not a mistake you want to make while searching.

Incidentally, I just read the following today and was surprised to learn it… I knew it was possible to make an iOS app that is entirely HTML5 (HTML5 + CSS3 + Javascript), but still loads as a native iOS app from a user perspective, which is exactly what beowulff described and linked to.

What I didn’t realize is that until just a day or two ago, Facebook’s official iOS app was done exactly that way. The “major overall” behind the new iOS version they released is that they switched from an entirely HTML5 app to one created in objective C.

I was surprised to learn that.

Iirc, there was actually an online course on ITunes U all about iOS programming. I tried following along, but didn’t have enough requisite programming experience to keep up, so I never got past lecture one.