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Thread: Xcode - Newbie

  1. #1


    Member Since
    Apr 23, 2011
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    Xcode - Newbie
    Hi, I am new here but I require a little assistance with Xcode.

    To start off with, I am fairly experienced with computers (and mac's of course), in terms of coding knowledge I know HTML and CSS and some PHP. Although that is mainly all I know coding wise at the moment.

    I have been wanting to start software development for a while, but really I had no ideas of any applications I could create with any use to me. Although now I have started getting into technical theatre as a sound/light technician for a local theatre.

    Because of this, I thought about creating a simple application where I have a script to follow through (on screen) and I can also add everything like stage directions, singing, etc. But also in the top right I will also have an audio player. At the moment the theatre uses an iPod touch to change songs, which even though this works pretty well the other day I did manage to miss a cue for a song as well as putting the wrong piece of audio on at one point, thankfully during rehearsals.

    So the idea I have is for me to be able to pre-set a specific audio track when I get to certain stages of the script, and then for it to be able to change automatically or during just the dialog, show nothing.

    I am obviously new to programming in terms of software, and also Xcode. I was thinking a document system might be suitable so I can just load a script file and it's there rather than using a database.

    I have created the basic design in the interface area of Xcode 4 although I am not sure where to go from there, I am also not having much luck when I try to run it because the window I want doesn't appear on screen.

    If anybody has a good knowledge of this, if you could point me in the right direction that would be great thanks!

    Thank you in advance, Allan Wagner.

  2. #2

    xstep's Avatar
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    The project sounds interesting.

    When you create an interface, it needs to be associated with a custom class. Have you done that? If you don't know what I'm talking about, then...

    The best advise I have is to get a highly rated programmers book for the OS you are targeting, iOS (iPhone) or OS X. You need to learn this stuff starting at the foundation. There are no shortcuts.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

    When asking questions, post the version of your software. You'll receive better answers.

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  3. #3


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    Hi, thank you for your reply.

    I probably haven't done that (or not knowingly anyway!), so basically no I don't. Would something like Apple's developer resources be any help (like this), as well as the other resources on their development section.

    And yea, at the moment I am developing this mainly for Mac OS X, I don't have access (at the moment) to any iOS devices. But I realise of course that learning something like this has no shortcuts, but I am looking forward to learning this code as well as getting the project done.

    Would you say this project is a fairly simple project to complete though? Basically a document based application with audio playback functionality, hopefully it'll go well!

    Thank you for getting back to me, Allan Wagner.

  4. #4

    xstep's Avatar
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    I don't keep track of online resources for learning Cocoa. That Apple one is a good start I suppose learning about the tools, and Apple does have plenty of sample projects you can poke around in.

    I used to send people to Cocoa Dev Central but keep in mind that some of the screen captures are from older versions of Xcode. Still, there are good articles there.

    Near the top of this page under 'Mac Guides' you'll find some possible helpful links.

    Do a search. I'm sure you'll find stuff. Oh, consider downloading the Stanford iPhone programming course via iTunes. Much of it is applicable to OS X. Hope I got that link right. There is also a 2009 version of it at iTunes.

    I still say, get a good book. If you can't afford it, check out your local library and remember that libraries may have a sharing program that allows yours to borrow from another one.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

    When asking questions, post the version of your software. You'll receive better answers.

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  5. #5


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    Thank you for your reply.

    Thank you for the links and suggestions. I will have a look at them all and hopefully I should get somewhere with it. Will also look into getting a book as well.

    Thank you for all of your help.

  6. #6

    xstep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allan Wagner View Post
    Would you say this project is a fairly simple project to complete though? Basically a document based application with audio playback functionality, hopefully it'll go well!
    I forgot to answer this in my last response.

    It depends on your experience, of course. I'd say given your description that it is at least medium complexity. It is a time based app and you'd like to play a list of music from say iTunes or a folder of music. Currently you want to read in a text file as a script of timed events. That script has to be designed to make it easy to create, edit and parse. As scenes are added, edited, moved and removed, your tool has to make it easy to keep up to those changes. Not just single entries, but whole blocks of data.

    During playback it would likely be handy for the script to be automatically scrolled based on the timing, but given that we are dealing with people, the playback timing needs a manual tweaking capability to adjust to their realtime timing.

    Playback of music is easy, but you would you really want it to be automatic given the timing issues of the actors. Also, I suspect, you don't want to play whole songs, but a section. There are frameworks to make that easier to code.

    I can't help to think something like this exists. Likely big expensive apps and smaller ones for the small local playhouse. Search them out and read about them. They may give you a basic understanding of what is involved. Don't let them overwhelm you.

    Good luck.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

    When asking questions, post the version of your software. You'll receive better answers.

    Please post your results to the thread as it is good feedback.

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