What Makes Educational Apps Tick?​

There's no denying that the iPad has helped teachers around the world deliver their curriculum in new and exciting ways. With a variety of apps that help keep materials organized, offer new approaches to interactive learning, and assist in group projects as well as individual assignments, these neat devices have certainly earned their keep in the world of education. Have you ever wondered how all of those apps work, though?

It might not be something that ever crosses your mind, but those apps have to perform as close to flawlessly as possible day in and day out. So, how do they do it? It takes an educated individual, or even a team of them, to produce and maintain the educational apps teachers are using every day. If you've ever been curious about how this process works, or are an app developer yourself and could use a refresher on C# exception handling basics, then this article is for you.

The Ongoing Process

Like any other service a company or individual provides, the job isn't finished just because it has been done. For instance, your hairdresser doesn't cut your hair once and that's it, right? No, their job is to help you maintain the hairstyle you would like to have.

In a similar way, and app developer's job isn't finished once the app has been created and hits the market. They are tasked with maintaining it and ensuring that it runs as smoothly as possible for every user. They do this by using a method called C# exception handling.

Isn't a C# Something On a Music Sheet?

Yes, a C# (sharp) is a musical note as well as a key in which musicians can play, but it is also a programming language that involves a variety of disciplines. Specifically, we're talking about exceptions. Now, that doesn't mean an exception in English like “I before E except after C,” but rather an error in the execution of an application. These errors are expected to happen within the coding of the program for a wide variety of reasons. It's up to developers to seek them out and put programs in place that handle or minimize them.

Try, Catch, Finally, and Throw

That's a weird section title, but those four keywords are actually how developers handle exceptions. The try and catch blocks, as they are called, are placed around code that could create an exception. They are usually set up to identify different types of exceptions that could cause user errors or crashes in the app. The finally block allows developers to execute certain codes that maintain or eliminate these exceptions, while the throw keyword is used to create an exception that exposes and catches the finally block.

Using C# Handling

Once these exceptions are identified the developer can log them so that the application's system can identify and fix them in the future. This takes care of problems within the code that cause the app to malfunction, ensuring a pleasant user experience for students and teachers alike. That could include something as simple as logging into something more complex like the interactive features these apps offer. Developers can also choose to create their own C# exceptions in order to handle these errors differently, or even track specific errors that cause apps to crash.

​Technology Is Neat

We don't really think about these things while using apps on a day to day basis, but isn't it interesting to understand the work that goes into providing us with such unique and exciting teaching tools? There's a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes that you'll probably be thinking about the next time you use your favorite teaching application.


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