App Inventor for Android earlier this summer as a way to make it easier for people to create their own apps. The project has been in a closed beta since then, but it has been met with great enthusiasm, with teachers listing it as one of their most-anticipated tools for back-to-school.Google launched
As a DIY tool, App Inventor for Android has opened up a world of app-building possibilities for people who have a good idea, but might not otherwise have the programming skills or background. Google notes several interesting apps that people have been built, including an app to teach kids vocabulary and one to propose marriage.
Some criticized App Inventor when it was released, arguing that it would just lead to more "junk applications." But that sentiment seems to miss the point. When App Inventor was announced, MIT Professor Harold Abelson, who helped lead the project, said that its goal "is to enable people to become creators, not just consumers, in this mobile world." And while ReadWriteWeb has recommended App Inventor as a great tool for teaching kids to code, it's actually something that anyone can use.