[Ed. We are pleased to bring you an interesting article that discusses creating your own healthcare app. Check out Josh’s own blog where this post also appears.]

by: Josh Herigon

iMedicalApps recently published a post by Craig Monsen, cofounder of Blueprint Health startup Symcat, entitled, 5 steps to making your medical app a reality.

Subsequently, this post has received a ton of comments. Nearly all of the comments are related to Monsen’s second step—learn to code. You can read through all of the comments if you wish, but I can encapsulate their sentiments in one sentence,

Knowing how to code can be beneficial for many reasons, but it should not preclude you from attempting to create your own app.

I have created and released an iPhone app and couldn’t code my way out of a paper sack.**

So, you don’t have to teach yourself how to code to develop your own app. Does it help? Absolutely. Monsen actually provides a nice summary of why learning to code—even a little bit—can go a long way in developing your app.

More important than teaching yourself how to code, however, is learning how to develop great user interfaces and user experiences.

I would amend Monsen’s second step to be, “Teach yourself about design and engaging app experiences.”

**This is a bit of hyperbole. I have been slowly teaching myself to code but am nowhere near an ability level where I could program my own app. My goal in this pursuit is to learn enough coding to distinguish good coding from bad (so as to evaluate technical partners.

Anyone contemplating how to create their own app already has a vision of what that app will look like and how it will work in their own head. By teaching yourself design principles — both visual and interaction —you will be better equipped to flesh out your app idea and maximize its appeal. You will avoid making clumsy mistakes that go against typical design conventions and, with a little creativity, generate your own conventions for others to shamelessly steal.

Teaching yourself to code actually works against this because you begin to think about and conceptualize your app based on your limited coding skill set. Instead of thinking about your project from a user perspective, you begin thinking about the guts inside it and how the nuts and bolts will fit together to make a working product.

In contemplating an app project, I encourage anyone to think about how the app should look and feel – let others focus on what needs to go into Xcode to make that vision a reality.

Questions about app development? Post them in the forum and get some answers!