Review of Stanford University's IOS 9 App Development Course by Paul Hegarty.

I tried for twenty minutes to find the name of the guy teaching this Stanford Swift Course, and finally figured it out. His name is Paul Hegarty. He worked with Steve Jobs for years. He’s exceptionally knowledgable about Swift Coding Language, and X-Code.

Paul is a very good teacher, but because he’s teaching a 10 week course and has a boatload of material to teach, he speaks fast. I made it mid-way through his 4th video when he left me behind in a ball of fire as he blazed forward.

There is a pre-requisite of being a “Strong Object-Oriented Programmer” for this course. I’m not, and as I said, I was left behind in the fourth class. At a later time I will go back through these videos and watch them because they are also PACKED with value and I know I’ll be missing something by not doing so. That said, even with no programming experience, and only Nick’s Udemy Course and Chris Ching’s old set of Swift Videos, I was able to get through the first three videos – and loved them. Here are two prereqs that will help prepare you to deal with the hyper-speed this course flies at: Programming Abstractions, Programming Paradigms.

Developing IOS 9 Apps with Swift Course Reviewed

COURSE MATERIAL

28+ hours of video consisting of 17 videos at 75 minutes each.

COST OF COURSE

The price of this amazing course which is actually a 10 week class at Stanford, one of the best universities in the world, is absolutely free. If you are already an objec-oriented programmer – you’ll likely gets heaps out of it, it is a tough course that covers a lot of information. I’ve heard it described by different programmers as 1. “Tough.” and 2. “Probably the most difficult course I’ve ever taken.”

DOES THE COST MATCH THE LEVEL OF INSTRUCTION?

Paul packs more information into these 28 hours of video than I can believe. This is immense value. Do you know how much a 3-credit class at Stanford costs students in 2017? About $3,000 USD. That’s a lot of cash.

VIDEO CLARITY?

For whatever reason, Stanford records these (or at least releases them at YouTube) in only 720p resolution. That’s not very good, and the screen recordings are not crystal clear on my MacBook Retina screen. If you have a poor screen, it’s going to be a bit of a struggle to see what’s going on I think.

EXPLANATION OF BASIC CONCEPTS?

The basics are glossed over in a flurry. I mean, it isn’t difficult to follow if you’ve already taken some of Chris’s free Swift – X-code course, or some others, but really, Paul is flying from the time he starts talking. This is not a great course to start with as a non-programmer. In fact, strongly recommend that you start with a couple of the easier courses – Nick’s and Chris’s come to mind. Then, by all means, launch into these Stanford videos and see if you can keep up for a while. It’s good to flood your mind with information presented in all sorts of different ways.

EXPLANATION OF MODERATELY DIFFICULT CONCEPTS

Again, not so great. There is so much that is assumed to be known, that the instructor just cruises through it all. If you do half-understand already, this is going to be an amazing course for you. If not, then you’ll struggle early on.

EXPLANATION OF DIFFICULT CONCEPTS?

I haven’t reached the difficult parts yet. I mean, I had to stop because I wasn’t getting anything he was saying, but the reason was because I didn’t have the pre-reqs I think. Curious to hear from others who’ve gotten well into the course and what they thought about how Paul explained difficult X-Code or Swift concepts.

For what it’s worth, the comments under these videos heaped praise on this guy. He must be pretty good!

COURSE PACE

The pace is fast and furious. He does take time to answer a few questions as students raise their hands, but this is Stanford, and these kids have already had the necessary prerequisites in most cases. You can GET the pre-req’s too – they are online for free. He mentions them at the beginning of the first video. Part of of the first class is like 28 classes at 50 minutes per lesson, and was recorded in 2008. Way outdated. So, going to be difficult to do this one course if you’re not already a programmer, unless you got something mirroring the pre-reqs somewhere else. Probably not worth watching a computer course made in 2008.

INSTRUCTOR SPEAKS SLOWLY AND CLEARLY?

Very easy to understand, fast, loud, and clear.

INSTRUCTOR UNDERSTANDS SWIFT CODE AND X-CODE?

He may know the Swift Language and X-Code better than, or at least as good as, any person alive. Superuser!

COURSE DIFFICULTY?

Starting around Lesson 4 I was getting lost much more than I was ‘getting it.’ It’s a difficult course, but you’ll feel a real sense of accomplishment when you finish!

What's In IOS? Graphical explanation from Paul Hegarty, developer and instructor for Stanford's wildly popular Swift Class on YouTube.

EASE OF USING COURSE MATERIALS – AVAILABILITY?

It’s YouTube, so, if you have an internet connection – you’re in. If not, you can download the lessons for offline use using the YouTube app for iPhone or iPad. Or, just put “ss” in front of any YouTube url like this – ssYouTube.com and you can download the mp4 version for free for watching later on your computer or any device.

FINAL WORD ON THIS IOS 9 DEVELOPMENT COURSE FROM STANFORD

It’s mindblowing to think Stanford puts this course and hundreds of others, online for free – you just don’t get college credit for completing it. It’s the coolest thing since, well, DUKE NUKEM. I am looking forward to going back later and trying hard to complete this course after I get Swift and X-Code learned to a higher degree. I’m curious to see, can I get through this course which is made for some of the smartest people on the planet?

ADVICE – Beginners, take this course after you feel like you’re quite knowledgable in Swift AND X-Code. If you’re going to do it much past 2017, re-think it, because X-Code 8 will be gone, and the new version will take its place. Same with Swift 3… gone. Make sure the dates of the videos, and the version numbers of the Swift language and X-Code software match up or you’ll drive yourself nutty.