Core Data Recipes
Core Data Recipes
Core Data Recipes

Last updated on 2013-08-22

About the Book

As an iOS or Mac Developer, you'll eventually want to save some data to a disk, or even upload some data to the network. Luckily, Apple has provided developers with a handy framework called Core Data. Core Data is an amazingly powerful and flexible framework for persisting a graph of objects to a persistent storage mechanism. Unfortunately, this power is somewhat complicated to learn, and even more complicated to get "right".

Core Data Recipes is meant to help take the confusion out of the mysteries of Core Data. By solving common data persistence problems with sample application architectures and code, and walking through them with detailed explainations of why each recipe works for the problem, you can understand a recipe as well as use each one with confidence. Sample code will be provided via the book's github code repostory. All code is (will be) free to use under the MIT license, with proper attribution required for use.

This book is meant for intermediate to advanced iOS and Mac developers. None of the basics of Core Data will be introduced here, and you should have an understanding of the basic objects that comprise Core Data. Apple's reference documentation will be linked for your perusal, but we want to focus on the important issues and problems at hand when harnessing the power and complexity of Core Data.

Some of the topics covered, and common questions answered in this book:

  • How do to set up a simple Core Data stack?
  • How about perform on background save or fetch operations?
  • What about the overall app's data architecture?
  • more, TBD

This book is a work in progress. Proposed chapters are listed below, and are subject to change, depending on community feedback. Feedback, and regular access to chapter updates will be handled by leanpub.

Proposed Chapters

The Basic Stack
  • The 90% solution
  • Table Views, NSFetchedResultsControllers and NSArrayControllers
The Multi Document Stack
  • Multiple Models
  • Using NSUI/ManagedDocument
  • Multiple, Related Stores
The Threaded Stack
  • Basic Background Operations
  • Multiple Coordinators
  • NSOperations
  • NSOperationQueues
  • GCD with groups
  • Background Saving
Importing/Exporting Data
  • Import Recipes
  • Export Recipes
  • Uploading Data
Migrating Data
  • Migration Recipes
Third Party/Open Source Libraries
  • MagicalRecord
Unit Testing
  • Unit Tested Stack Setup
  • Testing strategies
  • Examples with:
  1. Kiwi
  2. Specta
  3. OCUnit/[Redacted]

About the Author

Saul Mora
Saul Mora

Saul Mora is an independent Mac and iOS Developer based in Denver, Colorado, USA. Saul is the founding panda at MagicalPanda Software. He has worked at companies large and small, from IBM and Intel, to Double Encore and lately, is the sole developer at MagicalPanda. Saul is the original author and maintainer of MagicalRecord, a library and set of utilties for making common CoreData use cases easy to code. Saul is also the producer of NSBrief, a podcast for iOS and Mac developers. You can check out this week's episode at

Saul regularly watches for MagicalRecord related Core Data questions, and provides answers. Its the common questions and common answers, and the popularity of MagicalRecord in the Mac and iOS community which lead Saul to believe that a set of reusable patterns or recipes will make things easier for his fellow developers.

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