Google App Inventor

Google App Inventor
eBook: $23.99
Formats: PDF, PacktLib, ePub and Mobi formats
save 15%!
Print + free eBook + free PacktLib access to the book: $63.98    Print cover: $39.99
save 37%!
Free Shipping!
UK, US, Europe and selected countries in Asia.
Also available on:
Table of Contents
Sample Chapters
  • All the basics of App Inventor in plain English with lots of illustrations
  • Learn how apps get created with lots of simple, fun examples
  • By an author with over 100 books, who keeps it entertaining, informative, and memorable. You’ll be inventing apps from the first day.


Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 356 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : October 2011
ISBN : 1849692122
ISBN 13 : 9781849692120
Author(s) : Ralph Roberts
Topics and Technologies : All Books, Google, Web Development, Android, Beginner's Guides

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Obtaining and Installing Google App Inventor
Chapter 2: Learning Components
Chapter 3: Playing with Blocks
Chapter 4: Mastering Concepts and Advanced Components
Chapter 5: Apps That Communicate
Chapter 6: Apps That Remember
Chapter 7: Apps That Surf the Web
Chapter 8: Apps That Know Where They Are
Chapter 9: Games and Animation!
Appendix A: Links and Resources
Appendix B: Last-Minute Update
Appendix C: Final Last-Minute Update
Appendix D: Pop Quiz Answers
  • Chapter 1: Obtaining and Installing Google App Inventor
    • Getting a Google App Inventor Account
    • Time for action – signing up for a Google Account
    • Google App Inventor on the Web
    • Time for action – logging into App Inventor
    • Requirements for Windows, Mac, and Linux
    • Obtaining and installing Java
    • Installing Java on your computer
    • Installing App Inventor locally
    • Time for action – installing App Inventor on Mac
    • Time for action – installing App Inventor on GNU/Linux
    • Time for action – installing App Inventor on Windows
    • Setting up and running the emulator
    • Time for action – opening up the emulator
    • Finding and downloading drivers
      • Mac
      • Linux
    • Time for action – connecting a Droid to Ubuntu
      • Windows
    • Time for action – configuring our device
    • Summary
    • Chapter 2: Learning Components
      • Using App Inventor's web interface
        • My Projects
      • Time for action – creating a new project
      • Time for action – downloading our projects
      • Time for action – uploading source code
        • Design
      • Time for action – connecting our phone
        • Designing our apps
      • Basic components
        • Button
      • Time for action – adding and configuring a button
        • Canvas
      • Time for action – follow the bouncing ball
        • Checkbox
        • Clock
        • Image
        • Label
        • ListPicker
        • PasswordTextBox
        • TextBox
        • TinyDB
      • Media components
        • Camera
      • Time for action – shooting a photo
        • ImagePicker
        • Player
        • Sound
      • Time for action – vibrating buttons
        • VideoPlayer
      • Animation components
        • Ball
        • ImageSprite
      • Social components
        • ContactPicker
        • EmailPicker
        • PhoneCall
        • PhoneNumberPicker
        • Texting
        • Twitter
      • Sensor components
      • Screen arrangement components
      • LEGO® MINDSTORMS® components
      • Other stuff
      • Not ready for prime time
      • Summary
      • Chapter 3: Playing with Blocks
        • The Blocks Editor
          • The top bar
        • Time for action – collapse and expand block groups
        • Time for action – deleting unwanted blocks
        • Definition blocks
          • procedureWithResult
        • Time for action – calculating the area of a circle using a function Design
        • Time for action – calculating the area of a circle using a function
        • Time for action – finishing the "pi are square" app
        • Time for action – adding an error trap
          • Procedure
          • Variable
          • Name
          • Dummy
        • Text Blocks
        • List blocks
          • CSV list blocks
        • Math blocks
        • Logic blocks
        • Control blocks
        • Time for action – making a loop
        • Colors blocks
        • Individual component blocks
        • Summary
        • Chapter 4: Mastering Concepts and Advanced Components
          • Changelog
          • Concepts
            • Live development, testing, and debugging
            • Specifying sizes of components
            • Accessing images and sounds
          • Other stuff
            • ActivityStarter
          • Time for action – building bookmark apps
            • BarcodeScanner
          • Time for action – our very own barcode scanner
            • Bluetooth
            • Notifier
            • SpeechRecognizer
          • Time for action – build a time- and date-stamped Voice Note Taker
            • TextToSpeech
          • Time for action – reading aloud
            • TinyWebDB
          • Time for action – storing persistent data on the web
            • Web
          • Not Ready for Prime Time
            • FusiontablesControl
            • GameClient
            • SoundRecorder
            • Voting
          • What we learned
          • Chapter 5: Apps That Communicate
            • App—phone home
              • CallFriends app
            • Time for action – getting the source
            • Texting with words and more
            • Time for action – building a texting app
            • Time for action – create a text-your-friends app
            • Applications e-mailing stuff
            • Time for action – that Loving feeling
            • Social communication
            • Time for action – two methods for searching Twitter
              • Facebook and other social media sites
            • A bonus template
            • Summary
            • Chapter 6: Apps That Remember
              • Lists and Lists of Lists
                • Static lists
                • Changeable lists
              • Time for action – building the input screen for a Friends List
                • Handling database records
              • Time for action – converting a CSV table
              • TinyDB—persistent to please
              • Web component—reaching out to the web
                • Parsing
              • Time for action – using parsing to break out the states of India
                • Get
              • Summary
              • Chapter 7: Apps That Surf the Web
                • Browsing and using websites
                • Time for action – building an eBay link app
                • Fusion Tables—Google's free online data service
                • Quickie data-getter—finding the fourth way
                • TinyWebDB—accessing and storing data
                • Time for action – testing TinyWebDB
                • Publishing your apps for the world
                • Summary
                • Chapter 8: Apps That Know Where They Are
                  • Changelog
                    • Bringing web pages into our apps
                  • Time for action – showing three websites at the same time
                  • inside an app
                    • Using the Post method with the Web component
                    • Advanced tab in Blocks Editor
                    • Other changes
                  • Son of Changelog
                  • Using the location sensor
                  • Using Google Maps
                  • Time for action – determining our location by network
                  • Time for action – determining our location by GPS
                  • Time for action – taking a look from space
                  • Using the AccelerometerSensor component
                  • Time for action – seeing gravity and acceleration on our phones
                  • Time for action – nice and level
                  • Which way are we?
                  • Time for action – seeing azimuth, pitch, and roll
                  • Time for action – building a compass
                  • How high are we?
                  • Time for action – finding your current altitude
                  • How far from home are we?
                  • Time for action – creating the end and the beginning
                  • Time for action – getting the current address, longitude, and
                  • latitude
                  • Time for action – saving our home location
                  • Time for action – the distance between home and wherever
                  • here is
                  • Summary
                  • Chapter 9: Games and Animation!
                    • Animation
                    • Time for action – bouncing a ball
                    • Time for action – banging things off each other
                      • Some more basics of App Inventor animation
                    • Splash screens
                    • Time for action – designing a splash screen
                    • Time for action – making a splash with the splash page
                    • Bash the Alien!
                    • Time for action – throwing blocks to Bash the Alien!
                    • Knowledge games
                    • GameClient component
                    • Summary
                    • Thank you!
                          • Appendix D: Pop Quiz Answers
                            • Chapter 1
                              • Obtaining and Installing Google App Inventor
                            • Chapter 3
                              • Playing with Blocks
                            • Chapter 5
                              • Apps That Communicate
                            • Chapter 7
                              • Apps That Surf the Web

                            Ralph Roberts

                            Ralph Roberts is a decorated Vietnam veteran and worked with NASA during the Apollo moon program. He built his first personal computer in 1976 and has been writing about them and on them since his first published article Down with Typewriters in 1978. He has written over 100 books along with thousands of articles and short stories. His bestsellers include the first U.S. book on computer viruses (which resulted in several appearances on national TV) and Classic Cooking with Coca-Cola®, a cookbook that has been in continuous print for the past 17 years and sold half a million copies. Ralph is also a video producer with over 100 DVD titles now for sale nationally on places such as He has also produced hundreds of hours of video for local TV in the Western North Carolina area and sold scripts to Hollywood producers. Previously for Packt, Ralph wrote Celtx: Open Source Screenwriting, Google App Inventor, and Google Plus First Look. Ralph and his wife Pat live on a farm in the mountains of Western North Carolina with two horses.

                            Submit Errata

                            Please let us know if you have found any errors not listed on this list by completing our errata submission form. Our editors will check them and add them to this list. Thank you.

                            Sample chapters

                            You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

                            Frequently bought together

                            Google App Inventor +    Mastering Magento Theme Design =
                            50% Off
                            the second eBook
                            Price for both: $40.05

                            Buy both these recommended eBooks together and get 50% off the cheapest eBook.

                            What you will learn from this book

                            • Install App Inventor (did we mention it’s free?), and use emulator and your phone as test devices.
                            • Package apps, install them on your phone, share with friends, and publish them to Market and other places.
                            • Design apps by choosing the right components and formatting the screens so that everything looks as good as it works!
                            • Learn how the blocks click together and smoothly perform the tasks your app needs to accomplish, and understand which blocks do what.
                            • Explore the advanced concepts of App Inventor, such as the ActivityStarter, which lets AI communicate with and manipulate other apps.
                            • Create apps that email, text, tweet, use databases, find GPS coordinates, play games, and a great deal more!


                            In Detail

                            The number of mobile apps has grown exponentially in the last two years. If you want to join the crowd, Google’s App Inventor is the easiest and best tool for you to get started with. It is a tool to create Android phone apps and uses a graphical user interface, and drag and drop methods to create apps. It’s so simple that anyone can build an app.

                            Learn how Google App Inventor eliminates the mystery around programming. It is a visual language, where we simply drag and drop blocks (graphic elements representing blocks of code) in various combinations to give us applications that run on our phones or other Android-based devices. No programming background is required. Playing with blocks has never been more fun!

                            The emphasis is on creating apps that work and that you understand fully. The first part of the book gives you a sound foundation in the basics, and lots of tips on how to use App Inventor. The second part is all about creating complete apps ready for real world use. The book includes apps that communicate, use databases to remember, surf the Web and other networks, use GPS and various sensors on your phone, and let you write or play games.


                            This book is written in the Beginner's Guide format that takes the reader through a series of steps to build exciting apps using Google's App Inventor.

                            Who this book is for

                            This book is perfect for people with little or no experience, not just Android developers. No matter your level of experience, you will find plenty of information that you can use to create powerful apps, apps that can be published on Android Market and other places.

                            Code Download and Errata
                            Packt Anytime, Anywhere
                            Register Books
                            Print Upgrades
                            eBook Downloads
                            Video Support
                            Contact Us
                            Awards Voting Nominations Previous Winners
                            Judges Open Source CMS Hall Of Fame CMS Most Promising Open Source Project Open Source E-Commerce Applications Open Source JavaScript Library Open Source Graphics Software
                            Open Source CMS Hall Of Fame CMS Most Promising Open Source Project Open Source E-Commerce Applications Open Source JavaScript Library Open Source Graphics Software