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Old April 18th, 2012, 03:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Newbie & Coding Languages

Hi everyone, I'm new to programming but I have an idea for an app I want to build, so I'm starting to learn. I want to build for Android and iOS. I've started watching the free Stanford Programming Methodology lectures in itunes (going to watch the Stanford ios app dev lectures afterwards - which cover Objective C), and playing around in Eclipse. I feel like I'm totally working in the dark though, because this is all very, very new to me. If anyone out there programs for different mobile devices, I'd really appreciate it if you could answer these questions:
1) Is Java the best (only?) language to code Android apps?
2) Is it possible to use any Python?
3) iOS apps must be built with Objective C though, right?
4) Are there other languages I might want to use if I decide to turn my app into a 2d or 3d game?
I just want to clarify so I don't end up wasting time learning anything I don't really need right now. If anyone could recommend any other online lectures/tutorials I'd really appreciate it too...
Thanks!

edit* I just read a post further down asking people not to post threads asking how to write their app... oops... (?) I guess I just want some reassurance that I'm actually on the right track here. I know it's going to take a long time and a lot of work to get my head around this, but I definitely don't think it will take me years.

But if it does (although I really don't think it will), and I decided to employ an experienced programmer to help with a project, how much would you charge? How long would it take a gifted programmer to write an intricate interactive app?

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Old April 18th, 2012, 05:06 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Your questions are fine btw
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Old April 18th, 2012, 05:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sorry for the short reply I was on my phone.

To try and answer your questions

1) Yes Java is the best for most things. Some apps can use C or C++ for performance (see the Android NDK) but need Java to handle the UI/App.

However there are some cross platform game engines and toolkits like Unity3D (Games, JavaScript I think), Corona (Games, not sure what language), PhoneGap (HTML5) and Adobe AIR. All of these are pretty good but usually have some drawbacks.

2) I think I have heard of someone making a python SDK but I dont remember for sure. I personally wouldnt try to shoehorn it unless you really felt it was the best solution for your needs.

3) Yes, but just like Android, iOS has the same options for using a 3rd party cross-platform engine or SDK such as PhoneGap.

4) I think Unity and Corona are among the most popular game engines at the moment. Unreal I think is releasing one, or just released. I'm not sure.

How much someone charge can vary greatly. The are many factors too.

Here are a few things to consider:

- Location (devs from the US might charge more than someone from another country for example)
- Skill level (junior dev vs Sr dev)
- Project complexity (ie something the dev has a template for vs engineering a complex custom app)
- Quality Assurance/Testing (ie a meticulous dev vs a "get it done" dev)

However there are no right or wrong answers. What you choose to value is what will define you and your idea and your business. If your audience values quality, it might make sense to get the best. If you are rushed or short on cash, then other options might make more sense.

Anyways I hope that helps And welcome to AF!
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Old April 18th, 2012, 06:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hey, thanks for the welcome!
That's great... I think what I'll probably do is just carry on learning and see how well I take to the languages, and try to figure out if they're going to be able to do what I want them to. I want it to be good, so I'm willing to put in the time and effort to do things the hard way. To be honest, I probably couldn't afford a programmer yet, but if all goes well I might get help later on in the process if I run into any major problems. Thanks for your help
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