The iPhone SDK was officially announced by Apple on March 6, 2008, at an Apple Town Hall meeting. In the early days of the SDK, iPhone development was shrouded in secrecy because Apple has imposed a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) on developers who downloaded the SDK. No one was allowed to publicly discuss the SDK and the various APIs shipped with it. Apple had presumably done this to ensure the stability of the SDK. This move caused an uproar from developers because it prevented them from posting questions on public forums and getting help quickly. Nor could books be written about it or training courses developed. The adoption of Objective-C as the programming language for the iPhone SDK did not help. In fact, that language has a steep learning curve for developers, who for the most part are coming from more mainstream languages such as Java, C++, C#, and VB.NET.

With pressure from the public, Apple finally lifted the NDA in late 2008. This was welcome news to developers, albeit a little late. Overnight, discussion forums appeared and Web sites dedicated to iPhone development mushroomed.

Although Web sites and discussion forums talking about iPhone development are numerous, one obstacle remains — the learning curve for getting started is simply too great. Many developers are struggling to get started with Xcode and Interface Builder. At the same time, they have to grapple with the arcane syntax of Objective-C and to constantly remember which objects to free up and which ...

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