About this book
This book will help you become an App Inventor—someone who doesn’t just use a phone or tablet, but takes control of it! You’ll learn to create some fun apps, and along the way you’ll also learn programming skills that you can use in lots of other programming languages. We wrote this book for kids, but anyone who’s curious about programming and mobile devices will find it useful.
We aren’t expecting you to have any programming knowledge at all—we’ll start from the very beginning (you’ll be surprised how quickly you learn). You need to know your way around a keyboard and mouse, how to save files, and how to use a web browser like Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. You’ll also find it useful to know how to use an Android smartphone and access its menu settings. If you can do that, you can jump right in and get started making apps.
Before we answer that question, we need to answer this one: “What is an app?”
An app is a computer program—a list of instructions that tells a computer what to do. Normally, the word app is used to talk about programs written for smartphones and other mobile devices like tablets. It’s going to get a bit longwinded to keep talking about “smartphones and other mobile devices like tablets,” so throughout this book we’ll use the term phone or smartphone to mean any mobile Android device such as a smartphone or tablet.
An App Inventor is two things: