Apple's Swift Programming Language Now Open Source

As promised, Apple has officially made its Swift programming language open source, making the project available through Swift.org.

swift_org

We are excited by this new chapter in the story of Swift. After Apple unveiled the Swift programming language, it quickly became one of the fastest growing languages in history. Swift makes it easy to write software that is incredibly fast and safe by design. Now that Swift is open source, you can help make the best general purpose programming language available everywhere.

Announced at WWDC 2014 and launched alongside iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite a few months later, Swift marks a significant step forward from the Objective-C previously favored by Apple.

On December 3, 2015, the Swift language, supporting libraries, debugger, and package manager were published under the Apache 2.0 license with a Runtime Library Exception, and Swift.org was created to host the project. The source code is hosted on GitHub where it is easy for anyone to get the code, build it themselves, and even create pull requests to contribute code back to the project. Everyone is welcome, even just to file a bug report. There are excellent Getting Started guides available here on the site as well.

The project is governed by a core team of engineers that drive the strategic direction by working with the community, and a collection of code owners responsible for the day-to-day project management. Technical leaders come from the community of contributors and anyone can earn the right to lead an area of Swift. The Community Guidelines includes detailed information on how the Swift community is managed.

With the open sourcing of Swift, Apple has also released a Linux port to expand access to the language. Apple has also begun sharing design guidelines related to the upcoming Swift 3, setting the stage for "a more cohesive feel to Swift development."

Update: Apple has published a press release announcing the news and Apple's Senior VP of Software Engineering, Craig Federighi, has done an interview with Ars Technica on Apple's decision to make Swift open source.

Tag: Swift

Top Rated Comments

atari1356 Avatar
65 months ago
I've been programming almost exclusively in Swift for over a year now, and I write better, cleaner, safer code than with Objective-C. (especially with some of the additions they made with Swift 2.0) Love it.

Will be interesting to see how Swift is adopted on other platforms.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Markoth Avatar
65 months ago

As I see it, Swift is an inferior language in most ways to most other languages. It has one thing going for it, which Obj-C had going for it too: you can write in the language, or you can't use Apple's App Stores (which means you can't publish on iOS at all).

Making it open source might fix a pain point - now it might end up being possible to write your code once in Swift and have it run everywhere - but only if people actually port it.

IDK. I'm sticking with C# in Unity 3D for cross platform game development and Python for server side code.

I'd recommend not digging your heels in on this issue, and reconsider. Swift results in far more stable code once you become familiar with the language and some of its new concepts (which admittedly does take some time!). You'll be thankful for taking the time do learn it in the long run!
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
elmateo487 Avatar
65 months ago
While Swift surely has a long long way to go... Apple is moving fast, and I love it.

Swift is a breath of fresh air to code in.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
D.T. Avatar
65 months ago

I've been programming almost exclusively in Swift for over a year now, and I write better, cleaner, safer code than with Objective-C. (especially with some of the additions they made with Swift 2.0) Love it.

Will be interesting to see how Swift is adopted on other platforms.

Yeah, I just recently started a new app, ground up using Swift. I'm following most of my existing design patterns from my older apps written in Obj-C, and the improvements (old vs. new apps) are pretty astounding. :cool:
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dannyyankou Avatar
65 months ago
Did Taylor Swift write a letter to Apple?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sledgehammer89 Avatar
65 months ago
Where is Xcode for iPad Pro for developing Swift Apps on iPad Pro?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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