Learning to Write iPhone and iPad "Apps"

April 6, 2011

in Travel Tech

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iPhone 4 Creating and publishing an “app” for Apple’s iPhones, iPad, and the iPod Touch seemed to me a daunting task until I took the “App-Happy” class taught by travel writers Laurie McAndish King and Suzanne Rodriguez on April 2nd in San Francisco. Even if you’ve got a brilliant idea for the “content” of the app and are a great writer and photographer, you’ll still have to know the technical nuts and bolts of putting together these mini-programs. And once your app is “ready for prime time”, you may need a publisher to help you get it through Apple’s app-vetting process so it can be offered for sale on the iTunes App Store. And all of that is the real easy part.

To end up being “App-Happy,” you not only have to make your app available for sale, but you must develop a marketing plan for promoting it or it will languish, unloved, among the 400,000 and counting apps that “I-Thingee” users can download to their Apple gadgets. No marketing plan means no sales, and no sales means no monetary compensation for the “sweat equity” that you put into producing your app.

The great thing about the “App-Happy” class is that Laurie and Suzanne not only tell you how to do all of these things, but they give you detailed, written handouts on every topic covered in the all-day class. The handouts are the equivalent of a 70-page plus “Apps For Dummies” guidebook that non-techies can follow to become app developers, and by themselves are worth more than the very reasonable $85 fee which they charged me and the other students for the April 2nd class.

What I got from these two talented folks is the technical know-how to produce an app, and the business “smarts” to make app production a worth-while endeavor. Hopefully, they will offer the class again soon and we’ll see your app up for sale on iTunes.

(Dick Jordan, Laurie McAndish King and Suzanne Rodriguez are members of Bay Area Travel Writers. Laurie and Suzanne’sSan Fran Waterfrontapp was published by Sutro Media. Dick Jordan reviewed their app on his blog, Tales Told From The Road.)

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

KM April 6, 2011 at 2:13 PM

What a great resource for BATWs who are considering an app–thanks for letting us know, Dick.

Theimod Blog March 12, 2012 at 2:59 AM

Seems like a good deal to me as well. I wouldn’t mind paying $85 for the course. Do we need to have knowledge of c,c# or something?
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Dick Jordan March 12, 2012 at 9:41 AM

I don’t think that the instructors plan to offer the class again soon. But if you want to do a travel “guidebook” app and work with Sutro Media of San Francisco, you don’t need to know any coding or have a lot of tech expertise. The template that they give to their app authors is quite easy to use.

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