Source Code – What You Need To Know


Enough with mindset, goals, etc – Where do you really start?

Well reading this book was a good investment and a great start  so make sure you do read it through to the end because I am aiming to teach you pretty well everything you need to know. Realize that there is a lot to learn, and that’s ok.

Think back to your first job.  Do you remember the feeling of the first day of the job and how little you knew and how overwhelmed you felt?   But then, over time you learned the process and got better and better and in a relatively short period of time you became very proficient at what you did.

The same is going to apply right here with reskinning apps.  You will probably be out of your comfort zone, but keep at it, keep reading and applying the knowledge and soon you are going to be feeling really confident.

So you’ve committed to getting into this industry?  Or are serious about exploring the opportunity to see if it works for you?  Congratulations, a very wise decision.

Make sure you read this ebook in it’s entirety before continuing with your evil world domination plans, you have much to learn grasshopper….

One of the central things to understand with reskinning is source code.   So lets have a discussion on what that is and how to find it.


Tell me what this source code stuff is

Yes, just what is this source code stuff?

Simply put, you need to buy source code for apps if you want to get into the reskinning apps process. So this page should service as an introduction to what its all about.

Source code basically means the “gobblie gook” the programmer has used to make an app. Think of it like a new language. The programmer knows this language and “writes” his or her app in that language.

Now this source code contains all the instructions that the app needs to know to do it’s thing.

If the app was a pacman game, then the source code tells pacman the rules of the game, where he can and can’t move, as well as blinky and the gang’s instructions.

You’ve played this game before, right?

You see, despite them being called “smart” devices, mobile devices and tablets are actually quite dumb. These devices do not have the power to think, they just do “what they are told”. And the source code “tells them” what to do. The programmer has to map out each and every thing they want the app to do.

In the case of pacman, how to move, what happens if they hit a wall, what happens if blinky hits pacman, what happens if blinky hits another gang member, what happens when pacman goes over a cherry, and so on. The programmer, in excruciating detail has to tell the device what to do.

The reason why apps don’t work properly sometimes (also know as a crash) is a computer “bug”. A computer “bug” was originally called a “bug” because back in the wild wild west days of computer a moth got caught in the tubes of the computer, and caused a short out. It was labeled a “bug” by the boffins of the day.

The original computer “bug”.

The description for an error in a program has persisted ever since.

Anyway, “bugs” are usually caused by the programmer not telling the computer what to do in a certain situation.  Occasionally its caused by conflicts with other software, and yes computers crash sometimes.  Or maybe you just dropped your iPhone and your game is not working.  That’s a different bug altogether.

Getting off track here, so lets bring that back to the source code.

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Now you don’t need the source code to play the game.  What happens is the programmer uses a special program to “convert” the source code to work onto your smart device.   

From that point on you can play the game or do whatever has been “programmed” into the app.

On an Apple device, this program is called Xcode, and its a free program Apple make available to it’s developer.  Think of it like a translator.  It takes that “source code” the programmer has typed up and converts it into “code” that the computer understands.

Operators from Zion can read this.  Can you?

Which is basically a series of zero’s and ones.  The reason we have this intermediately step is while 1’s and 0’s make sense to computers, we humans find it hard to deal with.

If you ever saw the movie, the Matrix, you might remember the operators from Zion were able to decipher binary as shown in the picture above.  But most people can’t, or at least can’t in a timely fashion.

Put it this way source code dramatically speeds up the process of getting apps developed by allowing the programmer to talk in a language that makes sense to them, and then converting it into a language that makes sense for a computer.

So it’s good for all parties concerned.  Three cheers for Xcode  🙂

Yes, Xcode (or the equivalent on other non-Apple devices) “converts” this source code into the “executable” file (the binary code the computer understands).

Once this file is transferred to your smart phone, you are good to go and can run the app and go wipe out blinky.

Pretty complicated right?   Well it does take a measure of skill and experience to be a good programmer (more on that later).

But what if you want to make changes to the game, or if you wish to change the graphics and sound, etc?   Well you need access to that source code again.  Just having the executable on your device is not enough to be able to reskin it.

Well it’s technically possible, but Operators from Zion aside who understand and can read binary its not really feasible to work with the binary file.  Certainly not for the average person reskinning an app.

Hence the need for source code.

The programmer makes the changes to the “source code” and then creates an executable file, which ultimately ends up on your device.

See the difference?

As you are planning to reskin an app you  need source code.

Where do you find them?

Well these “codes” can be bought on websites.

I have an article that I will aim to keep updated that can get you started with source code.

But look, there is a ton of places online you can buy code, and with that said….

Slow down, don’t jump in.. At least not yet!

The worse thing you could do is just rush in and buy any source code yet, no matter how good it looks or how good the “deal” is”.

Buyer beware.  Don’t get sucked into anything until you understand more about the system.

If you are like me, you often want to jump right in and feel like you are doing some productive and I’ve spoken with many people who have gone out and bought the source code to a game early without doing the appropriate research and regretted it. 

So hang tight for a bit.

Lets get some of the basics out of the way so you can make an informed decision.  Some of the factors you need to consider are the demographics of your new game, the type of game, ensuring that the source code you are buying supports the most current version of your smart phones operating system, what level of support you will get from the programmer /website you are buying from, and more.

See?  There are a ton of factors involved, and just running in blindly and buying any code because of your eagerness to get involved in reskinning is not going to do you (and possibly your game downloaders) much good if you don’t pick the right code.

One of the things you need to understand is that source code is generally created for a specific platform. The two big players in town are Apple’s IOS and Google Android.

To be fair Android is not just Google (lots of companies make Android devices), but I’ll discuss that more in a future section.

And, yes there are other app platforms like the Blackberry, and Microsoft’s attempt at a mobile solution, but stay clear of these while you are starting out.

In general source code will often only work for a single platform.  Or it may work for both, but “platform specific” changes and configuration are needed.  Early on my advice is to start with Apple IOS.  Look at Android later.

Keep things easy. A cross platform app usually brings about more complexity.  I can categorically state that as a programmer speaking from first hand experience.  Don’t take on more than you can chew initially.

Click here to read another reskinning apps article

About the Author Tim Buchalka

Tim and his team completed over 500 reskins for himself or clients, and is an expert in the field.He has written 3 complete games, and has two complete video courses on Udemy that are about reskinning (as well as an Android development course with over 16,000 students!). You can find out more about Tim’s video courses here. He has also written a 110 page ebook about reskins that will give you the knowledge and skills you need to succeed with reskins which is available on this website. You can get a complimentary copy of this ebook as well as discounts to his video courses by visiting this link. To contact Tim, visit this sites contact page.

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