Skip to main content

iOS First Lessons

One of the items I was most interested in finding out about iOS Development was using Unit Tests. To my great delight, the first "Hello World" app walkthrough that I watched, pointed out that Tests come in the default project when you create a new App Project. So I immediately wanted to try out the Tests and see what they are all about.

As someone that has been learning about TDD practices, it came as a bit of a nice surprise that the default Tests, actually fail when I tried to run them without any code. Based on the TDD mantra of Red, Green, Refactor; you would want your Tests to fail first to ensure that your changes would then fix the broken code into a working system.

Looking into the Test Class, I see some code that looks fairly familiar to what I am used to when I create Unit Tests in .NET. There are setUp and tearDown functions that would be used before and after each test. And a single Test function that appears to be throwing an exception because it has not been modified to pass the test yet. It also appears that within that Exception throw, that a message is being built similarly to a String.Format in .NET.

Another reason for wanting to look into iOS development is the speed at which new technologies are coming out. It seems like .NET has focused on making sure that it is backwards compatible and able to work on code from 20+ years ago. iOS development code could not be more than 6 years old at this point, and I would guess that it probably has to be much newer than that. As Apple has pushed forward with new OSes and Devices, they have left behind the old stuff. I think moving forward and onward with better approaches and practices is generally a good idea, but it can sometimes be difficult to sell that idea if the changes you want to make don't provide any direct benefit to the customer. With iOS, you have a built in benefit to the customer, the old code will not work, we have to upgrade or our App will be broken.

Similarly the Xcode IDE is getting upgraded at a very fast pace. Visual Studio has also been getting upgraded very frequently. However, to get all of the features of Xcode, I need to pay nothing. Where to get the minimum features to be functional in Visual Studio, I need to pay $500 and the price goes up from there as you add more functionality. I completely see the value in Visual Studio and love using it. The value and time you get from the price is well worth it. However, it can sometimes be a struggle to get your company to see that and get you upgraded. With VS seemingly on a path of upgrading once a year or so, that cost is going to get harder and harder to convince others of it worth. With iOS development, you won't have to worry about that. You will have the latest and greatest as soon as it is available, because it is free.


Popular posts from this blog

Converting a Large AngularJS Application to TypeScript Part 1

I work on a project that uses AngularJS heavily. Recently we wondered if using a preprocesser like CoffeeScript or TypeScript for our JavaScript would be beneficial. If our team is going to switch languages, we would need to be able to convert existing code over without much pain and we would have to find enough value in switching that it would be worth the conversion. I had read an article that stated that because TypeScript is a SuperSet of JavaScript, you could convert a plain JavaScript file to TypeScript by changing the extension to .ts and not much else would need to change. I wanted to test out this claim, so I took a file that I was familiar with, an Angular Controller, and tried to convert it to TypeScript to see how much effort it would take and then try to figure out where we would benefit from using TypeScript. This is what the controller JavaScript file looked like to start out with: ( function () { 'use strict' ; angular .module( 'app'

Interns: Taking off the training wheels

My intern team has been working for several weeks now on our new website. We have already completed one deployment to production and are finalizing our second one. We started with a plan to release often adding small bits of functionality as we go and so far that plan has been working really well. We already feel like we have accomplished a lot because we have completed many of our project's requirements and should easily be able to complete the rest giving us time to do even more than just the original requirements. One of the things I have had some difficulty balancing has been how much to lead the interns and how much to let them figure out on their own. In deciding what our team process should be and how we should allocate our time, I think it was important for me to do more leading. I saw some deficiencies in how we were currently working and brought up some ideas for how we could address them. We had moved into spending all our time just working through stories and did not

My idea for Hearthstone to add more deck slots

Recently someone asked the Blizzard developers for more slots for decks in the game Hearthstone. The response was that they are talking about it and looking into it, but no decision has been made yet. One of the concerns over adding deck slots is that it could complicate the UI for Hearthstone and make it more difficult for new players to understand. I have what I think would be a good solution to add more deck slots without increasing the learning curve for the game much if at all. First I would take a look at the current selection screen for starting to play a game. It defaults to showing the decks that are custom built by the player if they have any custom decks, and there is an option to page over to the basic decks. This basic deck screen is perfect for how I would change this process. Instead of having 2 pages of decks, 1 for basic and 1 for custom, you would just see the select a Hero screen. Then once you selected the Hero you wanted, you would see all of the decks that