In the Beginning
I saw this video, and was intrigued:
Then I did it, I wrote my first Flutter App.
Flutter has been on my radar for a couple of years now, I had watched a bunch of videos and dabbled, but I hadn’t committed to using it. Last week, I decided to jump in with both feet. A week later, I released my App to the store:
Temperaments is a fairly simple application, essentially it helps you to discover people’s temperament, and to learn more about yourself. It contains the text of Fr. Conrad Hock’s seminal work “The Four Temperaments” and uses his questionnaire for testing. The application includes other writings on the temperaments and some interviews which you can play within the app.
There’s more to come, but that’s essentially the application; core features and content.
What is Flutter?
“Flutter is Google’s portable UI toolkit for building beautiful, natively-compiled applications for mobile, web, and desktop from a single codebase.”
In Flutter, everything is a Widget. Following the reactive paradigm, a Widget can have state or be stateless. Flutter produces native code and is extemely performant.
To find more about who uses Flutter, and the kind of apps you can build, see here.
I can honestly say it was a great experience using Flutter. Not knowing much, I pretty much pulled information on demand. There was no problem finding solutions to any issues I had. Furthermore, there were packages for anything I needed, including an audio player and a photo viewer. Flutter is extremely flexible, making it very easy to build nice looking screens. Dart, likewise, is a nice concise language, and readily understood by C#/C++/Java developers. Submitting to the Play Store was also simple.
Installing Flutter is a straight forward process, updating it is even easier. The tooling around Flutter is fantastic, and for IDE’s you can use IntelliJ, Android Studio or Visual Code.
Where to find out more?
There is plenty of documentation available for both Flutter and Dart at flutter.dev and dart.dev, with many code examples available on GitHub.
To learn how to develop in Flutter, you really can’t go wrong with Angela Yu on Udemy, or with Bryan Cairns.
There are many excellent Flutter related video channels on YouTube, to name a few:
- Learn Google Flutter Fast: 65 Example Apps, see here
- Beginning Flutter: A Hands on Guide to App Development (coming soon), see here
- Flutter in Action (comming soon, but available as a MEAP), see here
- Practical Flutter (coming soon), see here
I really think Flutter is beginning to hit critical mass and will start winning the hearts and minds of developers. Dart has been repurposed as a client side language, and the synthesis of Flutter and Dart is producing some awesome results, they are making each other better.