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Sams Teach Yourself Core Data for Mac and iOS in 24 Hours, 2nd Edition

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Sams Teach Yourself Core Data for Mac and iOS in 24 Hours, 2nd Edition


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  • A complete, hands-on, step-by-step guide to using Core Data with both iOS and the Mac
  • Fully reflects iOS 5, OS X 10.7 (Lion), and the new Xcode 4.3, the greatest improvement in Mac development tools in 15 years
  • Includes essential coverage of NSPredicate and bindings that other Core Data books ignore


  • Copyright 2012
  • Edition: 2nd
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-672-33619-7
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-672-33619-5

In just 24 sessions of one hour or less, start using Core Data to build powerful data-driven apps for iOS devices and Mac OS X computers! Using this book’s straightforward, step-by-step approach, you’ll discover how Apple’s built-in data persistence framework can help you meet any data-related requirement, from casual to enterprise-class. Beginning with the absolute basics, you’ll learn how to create data models, build interfaces, interact with users, work with data sources and table views. Every lesson builds on what you’ve already learned, giving you a rock-solid foundation for real-world success!

Step-by-step instructions carefully walk you through the most common Core Data development tasks.

Quizzes and Exercises at the end of each chapter help you test your knowledge.

Notes present interesting information related to the discussion.

Tips offer advice or show you easier ways to perform tasks.

Cautions alert you to possible problems and give you advice on how to avoid them.

Jesse Feiler is a leading expert on Apple database development. Feiler has worked with databases since the 1980s, writing about technologies that have since evolved into Core Data. His database clients have included Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Young & Rubicam, and many small and nonprofit organizations. His recent books include Data-Driven iOS Apps for iPad and iPhone with FileMaker Pro, Bento by FileMaker, and FileMaker Go; and FileMaker 12 in Depth.

Learn how to…

• Start writing database apps fast, with Xcode 4’s powerful tools and templates

• Master the Objective-C features and patterns Core Data relies upon

• Understand Core Data’s goals, components, and behavior

• Model data graphically with Xcode 4’s Data Model Editor

• Leverage the full power of Managed Objects

• Use controllers to integrate your data model with your code

• Fetch, use, and store data from any source

• Develop interfaces and features more quickly with Interface Builder

• Add navigation and control features that integrate seamlessly with Core Data

• Interact with users via popovers, segmented controls, action sheets, and tab bars

• Create table views that users can edit

• Let Xcode 4 and Core Data validate your data for you

• Use predicates to precisely select the right data

• Get ready for iCloud features to sync and move data among your iCloud-enabled devices

Category: iOS/Mac Programming

Covers: Core Data

User Level: Beginning-to-Intermediate



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Sample Content

Online Sample Chapter

Introducing Xcode 4

Sample Pages

Download the sample pages (includes Chapter 1 and Index)

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

    Who Should Read This Book . 1

    Some Points to Keep in Mind . 2

    How This Book Is Organized. 3

Part I: Getting Started with Core Data

HOUR 1: Introducing Xcode 4 7

    Getting to Know Xcode . 8

    Goodbye “Hello, World” . 8

    Hello, App Development for Mac OS X and iOS. 11

    Getting Started with Xcode . 13

    Using the Navigator . 15

    Using Editors . 25

    Working with Assistant . 29

    Getting Help in an Editor Window. 31

    Using Utilities–Inspectors . 31

    Using Utilities–Libraries . 35

    Using the Text Editor . 40

    Using the Organizer Window . 45

    Summary . 47

    Workshop . 48

    Activities . 48

HOUR 2: Creating a Simple App 49

    Starting to Build an App . 49

    Building the Project. 52

    Exploring the App. 58

    Summary . 60

    Workshop . 60

    Activities . 61

HOUR 3: Understanding the Basic Code Structure 63

    Working with the Code . 63

    Looking at Object-Oriented Programming in the Context of Objective-C . .. 66

    Using Declared Properties. 68

    Messaging in Objective-C . 73

    Using Protocols and Delegates. 75

    Using the Model/View/Controller Concepts . 81

    Importing and Using Declarations in Files . 82

    Summary . 83

    Workshop . 84

    Activities . 84

Part II: Using Core Data

HOUR 4: Getting the Big Core Data Picture 85

    Starting Out with Core Data . 85

    Examining Core Data at Runtime: The Core Data Stack . 90

    Working with Fetched Results . 96

    Summary . 99

    Workshop . 99

    Activities . 99

HOUR 5: Working with Data Models 101

    Making the Abstract Concrete . 101

    Working with Entities. 103

    Adding Attributes to Entities . 105

    Linking Entities with Relationships. 107

    Keeping Track of Your Data in Files and Documents . 108

    Summary. 116

    Workshop . 116

    Activities . 116

HOUR 6: Working with the Core Data Model Editor 117

    Moving the Data Model from Paper to Xcode and the Core Data Model Editor . .. 117

    Adding Entities to the Data Model . 119

    Choosing the Editor Style . 125

    Adding Relationships to a Data Model . 126

    Summary . 132

    Workshop . 132

    Activities . 132

HOUR 7: What Managed Objects Can Do 133

    Using Managed Objects . 133

    Deciding Whether to Override NSManagedObject . 134

    Overriding NSManagedObject . 136

    Implementing Transformation in an NSManagedObject Subclass . 140

    Summary. 142

    Workshop . 142

    Activities . 142

HOUR 8: Controllers: Integrating the Data Model with Your Code 143

    Looking Inside Model/View/Controller . 143

    Integrating Views and Data on Mac OS . 147

    Integrating Views and Data on iOS . 151

    Summary. 152

    Workshop . 152

    Activities . 152

HOUR 9: Fetching Data 153

    Choosing the Core Data Architecture . 153

    Exploring the Core Data Fetching Process . 154

    Using Managed Object Contexts . 158

    Creating and Using a Fetch Request . 159

    Stopping the Action to Add New Data . 161

    Optimizing Interfaces for Core Data. 162

    Summary. 168

    Workshop . 168

    Activities . 169

HOUR 10: Working with Predicates and Sorting 171

    Understanding Predicates . 171

    Constructing Predicates . 177

    Creating a Fetch Request and Predicate with Xcode . 178

    Sorting Data. 185

    Summary. 187

    Workshop . 187

    Activities . 187

Part III: Developing the Core Data Interface

HOUR 11: Finding Your Way Around the Interface Builder Editor: The Graphics Story 189

    Starting to Work with the Interface Builder Editor in Xcode . 189

    Working with the Canvas . 197

    Summary. 206

    Workshop . 206

    Activities . 207

HOUR 12: Finding Your Way Around the Interface Builder Editor:

    The Code Story 209

    Using the Connections Inspector . 209

    Using IBOutlets for Data Elements . 215

    Summary. 222

    Workshop . 222

    Activities . 222

HOUR 13: Control-Dragging Your Way to Code 223

    Repurposing the Master-Detail Application Template . 223

    Adding New Fields as IBOutlets. 230

    Summary. 237

    Workshop . 237

    Activities . 238

HOUR 14: Working with Storyboards and Swapping Views 239

    Creating a Project with a Storyboard . 239

    Swapping Views on iOS Devices. 241

    Swapping Detail Views (the Old Way). 244

    Understanding the Storyboard Concept. 246

    Looking at the Estimator Storyboard and Code . 248

    Creating a Storyboard . 251

    Summary. 254

    Workshop . 255

    Activities . 255

Part IV: Building the Core Data Code

HOUR 15: Saving Data with a Navigation Interface 257

    Using a Navigation Interface to Edit and Save Data . 257

    Starting from the Master-Detail Template . 263

    Using the Debugger to Watch the Action. 267

    Adding a Managed Object . 272

    Moving and Saving Data . 273

    Cleaning Up the Interface . 275

    Summary. 277

    Workshop . 278

    Activities . 278

HOUR 16: Using Split Views on iPad 279

    Moving to the iPad . 279

    Implementing the Second Interface . 281

    Changing the Data Update and Saving Code . 284

    Summary. 287

    Workshop . 287

    Activities . 288

HOUR 17: Structuring Apps for Core Data, Documents, and Shoeboxes 289

    Looking at Apps from the Core Data Point of View:

    The Role of Documents . 289

    Exploring App Structure for Documents, Mac OS, and iOS . 292

    Moving Data Models . 311

    Moving a Data Model from One Project to Another . 312

    Summary. 315

    Workshop . 316

    Activities . 316

HOUR 18: Validating Data 317

    Using Validation Rules in the Data Model . 317

    Setting Up Rules in Your Data Model . 320

    Entering Data into the Interface and Moving It to the Data Model (and Vice Versa) . .. 327

    Creating Subclasses of NSManagedObject for Your Entities . 331

    Summary. 335

    Workshop . 336

    Activities . 336

Part V: Managing Data and Interfaces

HOUR 19: Using UITableView on iOS 337

    Working with Table Views and iOS, Mac OS, and Core Data . 337

    Comparing Interfaces: Settings on iOS and System Preferences on Mac OS. .. 339

    Using UITableView Without Core Data . 344

    Using UITableView with Core Data . 357

    Summary. 360

    Workshop . 361

    Activities . 361

HOUR 20: Using NSTableView on Mac OS 363

    Exploring the New NSTableView Features . 363

    Building an NSTableView App . 366

    Summary. 373

    Workshop . 374

    Activities . 374

HOUR 21: Rearranging Table Rows on iOS 375

    Handling the Ordering of Table Rows . 375

    Allowing a Table Row to Be Moved . 380

    Doing the Move . 382

    Summary. 391

    Workshop . 392

    Activities . 392

HOUR 22: Managing Validation 393

    Validation for Free. 393

    Validation on Mac OS . 394

    Programming Validation for iOS or Mac OS . 402

    Summary. 407

    Workshop . 407

    Activities . 408

HOUR 23: Interacting with Users 409

    Choosing an Editing Interface . 409

    Communicating with Users. 413

    Using Sheets and Modal Windows on Mac OS . 419

    Summary. 422

    Workshop . 422

    Activities . 422

HOUR 24: Migrating Data Models 423

    Introducing the Core Data Migration Continuum. 423

    Managing Data Model Migration . 424

    Working with Data Model Versions . 426

    Using Automatic Lightweight Migration . 432

    Looking at a Mapping Model Overview . 434

    Summary. 438

    Workshop . 438

    Activities . 439

APPENDIX A: What’s Old in Core Data, Cocoa, Xcode, and Objective-C 441

TOC, 9780672336195, 5/17/2012


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