A while back – and to my dismay – Google decided to ditch App Inventor, but one of the best universities that could have grabbed the (now) open source technology has picked up where El Goog left off.
The re-branded MIT App Inventor is a great way for someone with an interest in developing apps to begin. And, you don't need years of Java coding to get started "because instead of writing code, you visually design the way the app looks and use blocks to specify the app's behavior."
I messed with Google App Inventor back in the day and will admit that it is a bit tricky to get the hang of. But, if you are looking to put together a quick app for a service you offer or just to impress your friends, then this isn't a bad option.
MIT's servers took a bit of a hit this morning, but it looks like everything has settled down now. So anyone interested (and in the possession of a Google account) can click here to get started.