I’ve just catapulted myself to Austin for the South by Southwest Interactive Festival, where I’ll spend the next five days grazing brain food by day, beer and bbq by night. It’s geek heaven up in here, a hacker’s hootenanny, a designer’s delight. I’m just saying. If you find yourself in Austin for SXSW, too, do say hello. Heroically dedicated stalkers can follow my schedule at my.sxsw.com (or sitby.us or sched.org if you prefer those flavors). And of course, you can always chase me down by following @bigmediumjosh on Twitter.

I especially hope you’ll join me for an afternoon of roll-up-your-sleeves iPhone revelations on Monday, March 15. I’m curating the iPhone workshop that day, three hours of nitty-gritty sessions about making kick-ass iPhone apps with yours truly, Joris Verbogt, and Jonathan Stark. We’ll stake out Ballroom F of the Austin Convention Center starting at 2pm.


I’m kicking things off at 2pm with Tapworthy: Designing iPhone Apps for Delight and Usability. It’s a fun talk and a nifty preview of some of the ideas from my new book Tapworthy. I’ll talk about: the elusive ingredients of “tapworthy” apps; why building iPhone apps is like designing a physical gadget; usability gotchas on the iPhone; and how the best iPhone designers turn constraints — limited screen space and fleeting user attention — into advantages for their apps. Along the way, I’ll share some behind-the-scenes glimpses into the design process of popular apps including Facebook, Twitterrific, USA Today, Things, and others.

(Alas, it seems I’m scheduled against a keynote by Twitter CEO Evan Williams; poor guy, I’m sure his talk would’ve otherwise been quite well attended.)

Joris Verbogt of Mangrove made the trip from Rotterdam and follows my fandango with his Objective-C Crash Course for Web Developers at 3:30pm.

Build your first iPhone app in 60 minutes flat. Along the way, you’ll tour Apple’s developer tools and learn the basics of the Cocoa Touch framework. Discover how to use your PHP and JavaScript experience for an informed approach to coding iPhone apps. Apply familiar JavaScript design patterns, for example, to handle interface programming in Objective-C.

My Providence chum Jonathan Stark closes out the show with Building iPhone Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Jonathan will share techniques from his O’Reilly book of the same name:

The free PhoneGap framework lets you build first-class native iPhone apps using just HTML, CSS, and JavaScript — an approach that also lets you create Android and Blackberry apps from the very same code base. Explore the pros and cons of this technique as you learn to create native-looking animations with jQTouch and hook into advanced iPhone features (accelerometer, GPS, vibration, and sound) without ever touching Objective-C.

Seriously. This is going to be awesome. Come by and say howdy, and walk out an iPhone code slinger, too.

Read more about...