Announcement: Marcus’ Core Data Book Just Went Beta!

by Matt Long

Core Data BookA lot of hard work has gone into this book already and I see it becoming the definitive text on the subject of Core Data. The release date is slated for March 30, 2009, but it’s great to see it in beta. If you want to pick up the beta in PDF, it is available now from Pragmatic here: Core Data: Apple’s API for Persisting Data under Mac OS X.

While new Cocoa programmers will find it a great help to getting started quickly with Core Data, the book also covers some really interesting and advanced topics such as data versioning and migration, Spotlight/Quick Look integration, Sync Services, and multi-threading. You can really see Marcus’ command of the subject shine in these chapters which are already available in the beta.

Give Marcus some feedback on the book as it progresses. It’s going to be a great reference for any Cocoa Developer looking to harness the power of Core Data.

$21.00 for the beta PDF
$41.35 for the beta PDF plus hard copy when it’s released in March.

Mad props to Marcus. Congratulations!


I’m kind of interested in this book, mainly because I’m intrigued as to whether it deals with how to integrate with other existing OSX apps (e.g. Mail.app, Address Book, iCal etc). I’ve enough hubris to recognise that there’s a need for a certain app (it’s just an idea at the mo so won’t discuss it really), that will integrate with all 3. I’m just starting out with Macs though, but when you say about persistence with Core Data are we talking about some kind of built-in DBMS in OSX here, or just a programmatical way to interface with data in apps & the like?

Get the Pragmatic guys to publish your TOC – that’d really help.

cocoalab says:


Core Data does indeed offer a built-in RDBMS; SQLite to be precise. It also allows other kinds of persistent stores. It is in fact a complete object relational system, with both programatic and a graphical interfaces for defining your business logic.

OTOH, what you are looking for can be achieved using Sync Services, the Calendar Store, and the AB frameworks. Have a look at the developer documentation on those subjects.

You may well make use of Core Data as well, Apple recommends it for new apps which require model persistence.

Hubris is healthy… maintain your vision through the byzantine minutiae and you’re halfway there. ; )

johncmurphy says:

I just picked up my beta copy. I’ve been excited about this book since I first heard you mention it on Scotty’s podcast. Your discussion from the second Late Night Cocoa podcast stands as the most lucid explanation of Core Data that i have ever heard. Having that discussion in a “pdf persistent store” (that is, the book) makes it even better!

minofifa says:

Hi Marcus
I also grabbed a copy of the book after hearing about it on late night cocoa. I read beta 4. This is a great book. It does move very fast; I felt there could be a chapter between ch 3 and 4 maybe. Looking forward to rereading the final hard copy release.


bakki says:

Hi Marcus, your book looks like just what I need to learn Core Data but I have a request for a topic which I don’t believe is covered. I’d love to see how to sync Core Data with a back end Restful web app. This is becoming more common now where iPhone native apps have companion web site (eg. Remember The Milk). I’d love to know how to write a delegate for syncing with such a service. I am furiously googling and posting all over but finding little in good examples and advise.

Marcus Zarra says:

That will not be covered in the Core Data book as it has broader appeal and implications than just Core Data. However I suspect a solution will surface somewhere :)