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Programming language Swift announced by Apple

Apple unveiled Swift, a new programming language developed by the company’s developer tools team during the Worldwide Developers Conference on Monday.apple-swift

The Swift programming will be an addition to Apple’s Objective-C platform which is used in the iOS tool kit. Developers using iOS and Mac tools will need to learn syntax to start working on Swift with their  existing coding. The Swift programming language was in development from July 2010 and had “only a few people knowing of its existence,” according to Chris Latner, Director of Apple’s Developer Tools department. The project became a major focus for the Developer Tools team in July 2013.

“I hope that by making programming more approachable and fun, we’ll appeal to the next generation of programmers and to help redefine how computer science is taught,” said Latner

Apple hopes to attract programmers from Ruby, Python, Javascript and web apps with its Interactive Development Environment which could find interest in kids. Swift will remain exclusive to Apple as the code will be difficult to translate in Android and Windows platforms. Apple will look towards replacing Objective-C with Swift in the future.

According to Latner, the developers of Swift drew inspiration from Objective-C, Rust, Haskell, Ruby, Python, C#, CLU and other languages during the design of the syntax and structure. Bret Victor’s theories gave the developers the ideas to add an interactive “Playgrounds” feature for Swift in XCode for making the coding more learnable. Lightable, an interactive programming environment received $300,000 funds on Kickstarter in 2012.

Developers will see a significant increase in performance and will be 3.9x faster than the algorithm in Python and Objective-C. Swift will be seen as a platform for developing web apps which is dominated by Mozilla and Microsoft and can run on several platforms. Apple’s first iPhone had only web based apps and native apps were introduced in iOS 2.0. A programmer has already built a clone of Flappy Bird in less than nine hours using Swift which highlights the simplicity of the new programming app.

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About Bhanu Jamwal

Living in Aldine, TX, he writes about Mac, iOS, Android and IT Hardware. Apart from writing on The Next Digit, he is also an expert in providing valuable seminars on IT Peripherals and IT Security. All posts by Bhanu

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