Last night I attended the first Indianapolis iPhone Developer meetup. A big thanks goes out to Apple. They realized the potential in the area and pulled the resources together to get the group off the ground.
TGFI and our developers have long been involved with local user groups. The Indy Ruby Brigade, the Indy .Net Developers Association, Indiana Windows User Group and the ColdFusion User Group to name a few. The shared knowledge between developers and business owners has been helpful to all involved.
However, the iPhone Dev meetup was quite different and very exciting. The buzz that Apple has around its products was in the air with passion running deep. I was expecting something highly technical when in fact, it was quite the opposite.
The first presentation was from the developer of the Loan Shark and Yowza!! applications. August walked through the apps explaining why he created them and why he made the design choices he did. He thanked Apple on several occasions for the high amount of visibility he has been given, and rightfully so. He has spent quite a bit of time on the UI and it showed. At the end we had a good Q & A session where we mostly discussed the business side of the app store.
At no time did we look at a single line of code.
The second presentation was from the developer of the GenCon application. Chris did a similar walk through with his application. He also explained a few of the 3rd party libraries he used, but we never walked through the code itself. Again this was much higher level.
We then passed the microphone around the room. It quickly became apparent that there was a wide range of people present. 50% of the room was composed of your typical developers and hardcore programers. However, it was the other half that blew me away. Many of the people had never programmed and had no intention of doing so!
There is a huge emphasis in this group on business, marketing and design. You never see that in traditional groups. This is what makes the Apple community so unique.
At the end we broke out into groups based on topic — Games, medical, new programmers, etc. It was here that I met several people with great ideas looking to get help, others looking to share their expertise, and watched people helping each other out.
Great things are coming to Indianapolis and I’m really looking forward to it. iPhone development is high on our radar and I can’t wait to get our apps into the store.
iPhone Development Update
Some of our applications are currently in the iOS App Store. Feel free to have a look at some of our publicly available iPhone development work and learn more about the work we can’t show publicly.