Too many tools

infinity tools app development

Hi everyone!

Last time I told you about my big plans for creating an app. Next step is to find a language or tool to actually build it with. Sounds easy…

Where to start?

So if you google “how to build an app”, a lot of answers and blogs and I do not what comes up. Quite possible the question is a bit too widely formulated because none of the findings actually pointed me into the direction of a good tool.

So I googled “tool to build an app”. I ended up with a (long) list of platforms.

Python?

Because the list got me confused on which way to go, I turn to my old friend Python. Could I do an app with Python? Turns out – if you really really want to you can. There is a toolkit called “Toga”. I played a little bit around with it. Although this is Python – I did not like it. So I cancelled Toga off of my personal list.

Flutter

I read a blogpost about how to make an app with Flutter.

You can go and check it out here. Shortly after discovering Flutter, I volunteered at a hackathon. The cool thing about being at a hackathon but not actually participate is that you get time to talk to people. So I talked to people. And they talked me out of Flutter. It was actually one guy who told me, that Flutter is quite new (or was at that point of time) and it was not that easy to find help online and to get started. He pointed me in a completely different direction.

Expo

He himself built apps in his free time and he recommended to me Expo. Which is a tool based on React Native which is a language based on javascript with which you can build apps. So many whichs but yeah… in a nutshell… He recommended it to me because it is apparently quite easy to get started with. Expo has a feature called Snacks with which you can see the results of your code directly on your mobile phone. This neat little thing actually convinced me to create an account with Expo and try to work with it.

Emphasis on try… because it did not get the hang of it. Mostly because I had no clue how React or Expo was built. Like what structure does my code have to have? How do I import all the functionalities? So I tried to find a tutorial or some literature on it. I tried for quite some time and I somehow felt like I just did not get anywhere. For Python, I found so many amazing resources but for this, my googling skills are just not far enough developed.

React Native

So I took a decision. Expo is really just built on top of or around React Native. So I decided instead of trying to learn Expo I will give myself some more time and actually learn React Native.

This is not really what I first had in mind. Because whenever I talked to others about building an app they were like “oh, it is so easy nowadays, really everyone can do it in a short amount of time”. Aha… not me apparently, so I will give myself some time to properly learn React Native and then tackle my app.

How to learn React Native?

Again, I then went off on the hunt on some good book or tutorial about React Native. I really like the O’Reilly Books (you can find them here). Yes, you have to pay for their services. In case you were wondering 😉 Many universities and also employers offer their students or employees the subscription. So go check on that if you want to access their books and learning paths.

I did not find a book that I really liked. And then a few days ago a friend told me that he did an online course on Udemy on Python, to refresh his Python coding skills. So I checked Udemy out and I found a tutorial for about 11 USD which sounded good and which I decided to take. So I am investing some time now in the tutorial which I think is about 18 hours worth of video time.

Sorry if I rambled on for forever, but this was my very long journey of figuring out how to create an app. Is it going to work? Well, we will find out 🙂

Thank you for reading!

Blondie

Leave a Reply

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked *