About a month ago, in an attempt to further fuel our developer community, we started iOS Learn Toronto(aka #iOSLearnTO). It’s a small meetup/peer lead group that is meant to teach how to develop for the popular native OS platform that drives Apple devices such as the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV.
It’s been an awesome, helleva time.
While officially we only have one more scheduled meetup, we’re all excited to keep it going further. To that end we’ve already got a hackathon setup for Saturday March 17th at The Work Republic - where we’ll try to push our learning even further in an 8 hour session.
Last night was session #3 – and with that we tried to dig deeper with what we’ve learned in the combined 4 hours from our last 2 sessions. We successfully setup our app to grab data from the Twitter public timeline API and then list and display each tweet message (the text only) in a Table view.
While the initial hookup to the API was easy (we used AFNetworking to grab JSON from Twitter) – we hit a bit of a road block after that. Thankfully as a group we were able to figure it out – just not as elegantly as we were expecting.
The true problem is that none of us are really that good with Objective-C (the underlying language for iOS) yet. Thankfully one of our members, Darren Butcher, is a bit more familiar with C like languages and was able to figure out how to iterate through the data we got from Twitter. While we agreed that it wasn’t the best solution in the long run – we’re happy that we were able to figure it out in an acceptable amount of time. More importantly we’re starting to learn the syntax of Objective-C – learning by doing – albeit the hard way.
From this however – we’re able to fine tune our offering for #iOSLearnTO season 2 and accelerate future learning. We’ll also be able to offer a longer season (we’re looking to double the number of sessions, double their duration, or both), and to have it in more locations around the city simultaneously – we know that physical location is a pain point for everyone. We’ve even got one of our members, Ariel, excited about bringing it back with him to Waterloo.
We’re open to having anyone lead a session – we’re developing a loose curriculum so you have some form of guide to work from, and to cut down on your time to create session material (if any). We’re also cool if you wanna hold a one off session on some super cool subject that ties back to building an iOS app – for example I’m developing a quick session that touches on building an API on the server side, basically creating your own service to use. If you’re interested in being an instructor please feel free to sign up here or pass it on to others!
If you’re interested in joining to learn or be an attendee – please sign up here - we’re already 50 people strong!
We’ll also be releasing the code we’ve been working with on GitHub – so stay tuned for more info!