Do you want to learn, how to develop Android apps?
There’s only one way – write a lot of code! : Head First Android Development.
So in this post, I am talking about Head First Android Development – 2nd Edition, One of my favorite Android programming books. Actually the 3 reasons why I think it’s better to buy and also something you want to consider before buying.
So let’s start… and find out the reasons…
It’s the Second Edition
By referring Second Edition you can understand that there is a successful First edition. After the victorious initial release in 2015, it got positive reviews all over the world. Experienced programmers and writers Dawn Griffiths and David Griffiths made the second part as well as the first version.
They included lots of basics stuff again. Such as Constraint layout, Support library, and RecyclerView – the book becomes a larger one and it pays off.
It’s From Head First – This Is Enough
Head First – For me, This one reason is enough to buy this book. Not only this book fan, but I am also a Head First fan too.
One minute if you don’t know about the Head First, it’s just a book series published by Oreilly. Head First released lots of books on topics like programming, Science and Mathematics.
Okay… But what makes Head First different from others?.
Because of their teaching style.
They prefer visual learning, The brain processes visual information 60,000 times faster than text and that helps you to grasp information easily.
Visual information holds in your memory better than large chunks of text.
Saying things repetitively in different ways that also attach the information in your head.
The next one I think is conversational style – they present information just like in a conversation. Because we pay more attention to the conversation than a lecture.
Head First books are not for read-only. You have to think, write and do challenges such as puzzles, quizzes and more.
However, in their way, they tried their maximum to tune our brain with humor and excitement with knowledge in each book I have read.
Step By Step App Making Process Makes You More Confident
Confidence – that’s my third reason why I recommend it. When you complete Head First Android Development, you will have the confidence to make your own apps. That’s how I did feel after finished.
The chapters in the book deal with creating a new app with a new concept or updating the existing one. Whatever you do, you will write a lot of code throughout the book. Remember the beginning?
Step by step you will learn to make more apps and more about Android.
In each chapter, difficulty level increases. But you won’t feel it as much as other books when compared to this one.
Okay. Let’s talk about the chapters, how it works for you?
The book starts with creating a basic Helloworld app, in that chapter you will learn how to set up Android Development Environment and a little about other basic building blocks of Android.
After that, you start to make an interactive app built by mainly Spinner and Button in the second chapter.
In the third chapter, you will learn how to use intents with activities inside your app and other apps.
After that, chapter 4, you will learn about how activities work? What happens or which method gets called in its lifecycle with the help of a stopwatch app.
Thenceforth in Views and ViewGroups chapter, you will get to know how to use GUI components and show you how LinearLayout and FrameLayout works.
How to make complex layouts using Constraint layout that will be learned in chapter 6 by making the “My Constraint Layout” app.
If you are a beginner and have a great idea for an app, the next chapter will help you to organize your ideas and make an awesome app. For example, you will make a starbuzz app from scratch.
Following this, you will understand the importance of the Android Support library, also learn how to make shortcuts in the app bar.
Android apps are running on different devices. What you do if you want your app to look different depending on the phone or tablet? There are 3 main chapters for dealing with that question with Fragments.
You will create a workout app that’s enough to deal with fragment lifecycle methods. The next chapter will help you to implement material design in-app with the help of Android Design Support Library.
You will see how to use tabs, toolbar, floating action buttons and snack bars.
In the 13th chapter, you will learn about an advanced type of list: RecyclerView. CardView also get introduced. You will build an app with these too.
The next chapter will show you how to show different sections of our app using navigation drawer.
The next 3 chapters will clear almost all your doubts about the SQLite database in Android. Only through making apps.
after that, you will get introduced to Services, which helps us to work in the background. such as downloading files.
oh, this is enough, I have almost summarized it. But the books contain a lot more than that.
Before Buying Head First Android Development – Second Edition
This book is enough for a beginner, but there is something you must consider while buying this one.
- You should know Java programming language
- This is not a reference book and it takes time to complete. Just reading isn’t the way to use this book.
- Second edition released in 2017, so Book uses Android Studio 2.3. So it little bit outdated now.
- It just introduces below topics, not a detailed tutorial
- WebView – Don’t worry, our webview guide is here
- Content Provider
- Broadcast Receivers
- Testing like topics.
For Indian users, All Indian Reprints of O’Reilly are printed in Greyscale (B/W)
There are lots of books you can find about Android Programming. For me, Head First Android Programming – Second Edition will stay in front of them. When I started learning Android app development, I always roam around online tutorials and gets nowhere. But after reading Head First, It’s changed. It gives me enough information and confidence to make my own apps. Although it’s late to review this book, but still people searching about this book, talking about this. That’s why I reviewed it now. But for beginners, It’s still worth reading. If Head First releases the 3rd edition, I would definitely read it.