Mac os x application development books

So many Cocoa programming books focus on iOS, so it's good to have books that focus on the Mac platform exclusively. And these are very good ones! Learn more about Teams. What is the best cocoa book for desktop mac development?

Asked 8 years, 7 months ago. Active 3 years, 6 months ago. Viewed 5k times. I'm learning iphone dev, and also want a solid handle at desktop development for the mac. What do you guys recommend?

Getting Started

Language wise, is objective-c all I need? Is desktop development locked down at all, or are you free to do anything once it is installed? Does each app run in its own space as to not effect other desktop apps? Blankman Blankman k gold badges silver badges bronze badges. See also Cocoa and Objective-C resources? Objective-C is all you need, for the most part. Very rarely will you need a more domain-specific language. The bottom section switches between various things you can insert into your project. Right now you want to insert UI elements, so select the Object library which is the third from the left.

Finally, add a Label. Now, build and run the app using the Play button or Command-R. You will see these 3 UI elements. Try typing in the text field — it already supports all the standard editing shortcuts: copy, paste, cut, select all, undo, redo and so on. Go back to Main. In the Utilities panel on the right, make sure the Attributes Inspector is showing — the 4th button across the top. The button may not be wide enough to show all the text, so go to the Editor menu and select Size to Fit Content which should fix that. If Size to Fit Content is disabled, click somewhere to de-select the button, then re-select it and try again.

Now click in the text field to select it. To help the users, add some placeholder text to the text field using the Attributes Inspector. Stretch the text field out a bit to allow for long names and position the button to the right of it. Position the label below the text field and button. Since the label is going to be important, make it use a larger font. Select the label and in the Attributes Inspector , change the font to System Regular With the Main.

This will create a second editor panel containing the ViewController code. Depending on the size of your monitor, things may be looking a bit cramped now, so use the rightmost button in the Toolbar to hide the Utilities. If you need even more space, hide the Navigator. Select the text field.

Navigation menu

Hold down the Control key and drag from the text field into the top of the ViewController class definition. Let go and enter nameField in the name box of the popup, then click Connect. Looking at the code that Xcode has generated, you see that these are both marked with IBOutlet. This is short for Interface Builder Outlet and is how you tell the storyboard editor that these object names are available for linking to a visual object. For the button, the code does not need to have a name for it, but it does need to know when a user clicks the button.

Select the button and Control-Drag into ViewController. This time, change the Connection popup to Action and set the name to sayButtonClicked. This creates the function that will be called when the button is clicked. Everything is now in place to edit the code. If you had hidden the Navigator , click the toggle button in the top right, or press Command-1 to jump directly to the Project Navigator. The complete code in ViewController. The blobs beside the line numbers indicate a connection to the interface in the storyboard.


Now type in your name and click the button again to see your own personal greeting. Sometimes, we programmers make mistakes — hard to believe I know, but trust me, it happens. And when it does, we need to be able to debug our code. Xcode allows us to stop the code at any point and step through line by line, checking the values of the variables at each point so that we can find the error. Go to sayButtonClicked in ViewController. A blue pointed rectangle will appear. This is an active breakpoint and when you click the button, the debugger will stop here. Click it again and it will turn pale blue.

It is now an inactive breakpoint and will not stop the code and start the debugger. To remove the breakpoint completely, drag it out of the line numbers gutter. Add the breakpoint again and run the app. Click the Say Hello button. Xcode will come to the front with the breakpoint line of code highlighted. In the bottom of the Editor panel, there will now be two new sections: Variables and Console. The Variables section shows the variables used in this function as well as self — the View Controller, and sender — the button. Above the Variables display is a set of buttons for controlling the debugger.

Mouse over each one and read the tooltop to see what it does. Click the Step Over button to move to the next line. In the Variables display, you can check that name is an empty string, so click Step Over twice more. Select the name variable in the Variables display and click the Quick Look button below to see the contents.

Mac Application Development | BurningThumb Studios

Now click the Print Description button to see the information printed in the Console. When you have checked the contents of the name variable, click the Continue program execution button to stop debugging and let the program move on. Use the button in the top right to hide the Debug area.

In addition to code and user interfaces, your app will also need some artwork.


Due to the different screen types Retina and non-Retina , you often need to provide multiple versions of each asset. To simplify this process, Xcode uses Asset Libraries to store and organize the assets that accompany the app. In the Project Navigator , click on Assets. The only item there so far is AppIcon which will contain the various images needed to display the app icon in all the required resolutions.

Click on AppIcon — you can see that it wants 10 different images to cover all the possibilities, but if you supply any one of these, Xcode will use it as best it can. This is not good practice, as you should supply all the required icon sizes, but for this tutorial one icon will be sufficient. Download the sample icon which is a x pixel image. Drag it into the Mac pt 1x box. Build and run the app to see the icon in the Dock menu. If you still see the default app icon, quit the HelloWorld app, go back to Xcode and choose Clean from the Product menu, then run the app again.

As well as being an editor, Xcode also contains all the documentation you will need for writing macOS apps. Search for NSButton.

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Make sure Swift is the selected language, then click the top search result so that you can read all the details about buttons and button properties. There is also a way to get to relevant documentation directly from your code. Go back to ViewController. Option-click on the word stringValue.