How to learn App Inventor


A very interesting article I found recently is A guide to picking up new programming skills, Thank you Christian Rodriguez! The single most important thing someone who wants to work in tech should learn is how to learn.

So what does this mean for people trying to learn App Inventor?

Top 5 Tips: How to learn App Inventor

1. Do the Tutorials

Do the tutorials to learn the basics of App Inventor.

You will not find a tutorial, which does exactly what you are looking for. But doing the tutorials (not only reading a little bit) help you to understand, how things are working. This is important and this is the first step to do.

You can find here at Pura Vida Apps more snippets, tutorials and advanced examples. Also Scott provides a large array of tutorials and examples.

Learn from the examples!.

There are also more helpful links to be found here.

2. Play around

  • Do something!
  • Experiment!
  • Don't hesitate to play around!
  • Try some blocks!

This is part of the fun especially using App Inventor!

3. RTFM - Read the Fantastic Manual


Comic provided by xkcd.com. Thank you.

There is a great documentation and support library available, which always should be consulted first in case of questions or problems.

Language Blocks Documentation
Components Documentation
Other topics, notes and details

In the Designer window you can get a short description for the components, just click onto the question mark. And after clicking "More information" you will be forwarded to the corresponding page in the documentation.


In the Blocks window you can hover with the mouse over any block to get a short description of its use.

4. Use "Do It" to debug your blocks

In case you are unsure, what's happening in your blocks, there is the Do it functionality, which can help you to find out, what's going on.

Just right-click onto a block and select Do it from the menu to get a Do it result in a comment window. Note: you need a connection to a device or emulator for this to work.


See also Scott's tip How to use 'Do It' to view procedure results, event arguments and local variables.

5. Search the Forums

Before posting, it's a good idea to search in the forums. Many others have likely run into problems similar to yours. Doing a Search is very easy, just go to the MIT App Inventor Forum, enter a search topic in the Search box and click Search.
Nobody wants to be asked something that's just a search away.

I'm lost... What can I do now?

Are you ready to answer the question What have you tried? Btw: Thank you Matt Gemmel for this great article!
Did you try to help yourself? Yes?

Then open a new thread in the MIT App Inventor forum. When you post, choose as many of the optional drop-down selections as you can, in order to better guide us to helping you. If you need help with a specific problem, please include details in your post about what was happening when the problem occurred, and anything that seemed unusual. If you're new to the forum, please take a few minutes to read the Posting Guidelines.

Do you need help with your App Inventor project?

I can help you: for one hour I charge 25 USD.
Please contact me at info [at] puravidaapps [dot] com for details!
For questions about App Inventor, please use the App Inventor forum. Thank you.

Teach a man to fish


Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

Teach a man to code

Teach a man to code and he will never stop asking you questions...ever.

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