The intent of this book is to introduce Unix developers to Mac OS X. As such, I think it does a pretty good job. It doesn't go in to great depth; for example another reviewer complained about its lack of coverage for Carbon or mixed mode programming. That's not entirely fair though given its intent: while some Unix developers may be interested in producing OS9 capable apps, my bet is that most are just going to ignore anything prior to X entirely - and they should! There is a small appendix that covers the history of Mac OS prior to X, but it does not cover programming and I don't think it should.
I do have some minor criticism. I had never even looked at Project Builder/Interface Builder (the programming IDE) before picking up this book. There's a good sized introductory chapter on using this for a simple project. I worked through it, but it wasn't entirely easy sailing. I'm not sure whether that was because Project Builder has changed slightly since this writing, or if the author is just so familiar with it that he accidentally used incorrect language here and there. In any case, I found myself confused at certain points. However, there were no show stoppers: if you are a developer, you will understand the goal and enough of the concepts not to get hung up by these small errors or omissions. While I might wish these things were more carefully reviewed by having an unfamiliar user actually run through them, I don't see this as a major weakness at all.
In addition to Project Builder and Interface builder, this covers Objective-C, and Applescript. It isn't going to teach you much about either of these; you'll need other books for that. But it will introduce you to them, lead you through building a simple example applicatio, show you how the Apple debugging tools work, and show you how to create HTML documentation for use with Apple's Help Viewer.
Tony Lawrence 2003/03/04 Rating:
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