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Apple Veteran Hired by Elon Musk’s Tesla Company


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The man behind Apple’s Swift programming language, Chris Lattner, gave up on his job and went to Elon Musk’s Tesla company. There, he will act as the Vice President of autopilot software. Lattner announced his decision through an e-mail sent to Swift. He preferred to not give an official argumentation for his decision. Instead, he simply said that starting next month, he will leave Apple and try and pursue another dream. That dream seems to be Tesla.

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From Apple to Tesla

Even if Lattner made the decision to not announce where he was going, Tesla later revealed that he was coming to work with them and welcomed Lattner to the team. Tesla also said that he is going to come as a replacement for Jinnah Hosein, who is SpaceX’s Vice President for Software. This latest move means that Hosein will have to work for SpaceX full-time from now on. Lattner’s talent in what concerns programming is no secret. Apple would not have worked with him had he not been extraordinarily good. It seems like now, Tesla wants to use him for his talents too. He will most likely work to further develop Tesla’s autopilot software. Maybe he will even be the piece that was missing in the evolution of autonomous driving.

At the end of 2016, Tesla made the announcement that from then on, all of their automobiles were going to come with a self-driving hardware. This is exactly where Lattner could work some magic and bring his A game. Moreover, Elon Musk announced that by the end of this year, he wants to conduct a completely autonomous test drive, going from coast to coast. Recently, Tesla even announced that they extended their free supercharging for two more weeks. So, people who own a Tesla vehicle can now recharge them for a longer period of time.

What about Apple?

The Swift project at Apple will not be abandoned. According to an e-mail, Ted Kremenek is going to replace Lattner at the helm of it. Also in the same e-mail, Lattner said that it was a “unique life experience” to work with the teams and create the Swift programming language. One that he will never forget. He also stated that Apple was an amazing part of his life, one during which he grew a lot, both as a professional and as an individual.

Lattner worked at Apple for 11 years. His main job was always to develop Swift. Thanks to this programming language, people at Apple were able to create applications for the iOS system and macOS system. However, before creating Swift, Lattner was part of another programming language, called Objective C, which pre-dated Swift. Apart from this, he also worked to develop Apple’s Xcode software. More than 5 years out of those 11, he spent as Apple’s senior director at the Developer Tools Department. All in all, it will be interesting to see what he will bring to Tesla, considering that it is a totally different company which deals with other technologies. Also, if his presence will be felt in the evolution of the Tesla vehicles.

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