Chris Lattner Talks Swift, WWDC and More on This Week's ATP Podcast

Chris Lattner, known for his work on Xcode and Swift during his time at Apple, this week joined the Accidental Tech Podcast (ATP) hosted by Marco Arment, Casey Liss, and John Siracusa.

In a two hour and thirty minute long conversation, Lattner and the ATP team talked about Swift, the work that went into preparing for WWDC while he was at Apple, Apple's 2020 digital WWDC event, and more.

Lattner said that he's very interested to see how Apple handles the online version of WWDC, which is set to take place sometime in June.

Apple's a very strategic and very smart company and has a lot of very smart people. I'm sure they're looking at how to turn this into a new opportunity and what new things they can do with the format and how they can delight people in new ways.

As to whether the virtual WWDC event might result in physical WWDC events canceled in future years, Lattner speculated that it was a wait and see kind of situation.

I think that if they do WWDC virtually this year and it sucks then it's probably going to go physical again. I don't know. I would wager that it doesn't return to its original format. If it does, if there is an in-person event, I think it will be significantly different than what the historical events have been.

Chris Lattner was at Apple for 11 years before he left in 2017, and he also spent time at Tesla working on autopilot software and at Google working on TensorFlow. He's now the SVP of Platform Engineering at SiFive.

Lattner's full discussion about WWDC, TensorFlow, SiFive, Swift, and more can be listened to on the web.

Tag: Swift

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
9 weeks ago
I think during this insane situation we are all in, which is affecting our purchasing power, Apple should bring back the 6% cash back on Apple Card purchases from Apple that they ran during the holidays
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
9 weeks ago


Chris did some insane work at Apple, especially with SWIFT (think that was his baby). I'm not sure how good he is or if the reason he left Apple was no elevation for his career yet I suspect that maybe the case. Good spirited person and a brilliant mind. Hoping he can return to Apple in some capacity.

Chris Lattner’s baby is the LLVM compiler. He was on the panel for the development of Swift and helped steer some of the internal design decisions.

He left Apple because the company couldn’t challenge him anymore.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
9 weeks ago
Decidedly one of the most brilliant minds in his field.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
9 weeks ago

~ since RISC-V does not use royalties for Arm Holdings, INC I'm curious if Apple still does with their A series chips?

Chris mentions in the podcast that Apple still uses ARM instruction set and then goes on to talk about why they might one day ditch it and make their own for the future A chips. The podcast is over 2.5 hours long but it has tons of interesting insight into many low level stuff.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
9 weeks ago
Chris did some insane work at Apple, especially with SWIFT (think that was his baby). I'm not sure how good he is or if the reason he left Apple was no elevation for his career yet I suspect that maybe the case. Good spirited person and a brilliant mind. Hoping he can return to Apple in some capacity.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
9 weeks ago
Yep apple has lost a lot of good people lately.
No wonder the quality had seemed to gone down hill (mostly in buggy software)
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Releases macOS Catalina 10.15.5 With Battery Health Management Features, Fix for Finder Freezing

Tuesday May 26, 2020 1:59 pm PDT by
Apple today released macOS Catalina 10.15.5, the fifth update to the macOS Catalina operating system that was released in October 2019. macOS Catalina 10.15.5 comes two months after the launch of macOS Catalina 10.15.4, which introduced Screen Time Communication Limits. macOS Catalina 10.15.5 is a free update that can be downloaded from the Mac App Store using the Update feature in the...

Leaker Shares Details on 'iPhone 13' Camera [Updated]

Wednesday May 27, 2020 4:27 pm PDT by
The next-generation iPhone 12 lineup coming in fall 2020 isn't out yet, but Fudge (@choco_bit), a leaker who sometimes shares information on upcoming Apple devices, today offered up details on what Apple has in store for the 2021 iPhone 13's camera setup. A simple design drawing depicts a device with a four camera array, which Fudge claims will have the following features: 64-megapixel...

Leaker: Apple to Stick With Lightning Over USB-C for 'iPhone 12' Before Going Port-Less Next Year

Tuesday May 26, 2020 2:31 am PDT by
Apple will use a Lightning port instead of USB-C in the upcoming "iPhone 12," but it will be the last major series of Apple's flagship phones to do so, with models set to combine wireless charging and a port-less Smart Connector system for data transfer and syncing in the iPhone "13 series" next year. The above claim comes from occasional Apple leaker and Twitter user "Fudge" (@choco_bit),...

16-Inch MacBook Pro, iPad Pro, and iMac Pro With Mini-LED Displays Again Rumored to Launch in 2021

Tuesday May 26, 2020 5:30 am PDT by
Apple plans to release several higher-end devices with Mini-LED displays in 2021, including a new 12.9-inch iPad Pro in the first quarter, a new 16-inch MacBook Pro in the second quarter, and a new 27-inch iMac in the second half of the year, according to Jeff Pu, an analyst at Chinese research firm GF Securities. This timeframe lines up with one shared by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who recently...

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished iPhone XR Models

Thursday May 28, 2020 9:50 pm PDT by
Apple today began selling certified refurbished iPhone XR models in select colors and capacities for the first time in the United States. Refurbished iPhone XR models are priced at a roughly 16 percent discount compared to current pricing on brand-new units, knocking $100–120 off of the regular price. In addition to the 64GB and 128GB capacities matching current brand-new iPhone XR models, ...

Apple Making It Harder to Avoid Nagging macOS Update Notifications

Thursday May 28, 2020 8:13 am PDT by
With the release of macOS Catalina 10.15.5 and related security updates for macOS Mojave and High Sierra earlier this week, Apple is making it more difficult for users to ignore available software updates and remain on their current operating system versions. Included in the release notes for macOS Catalina 10.15.5 is the following:- Major new releases of macOS are no longer hidden when...

HBO Max Now Available on Apple TV and iOS Devices

Wednesday May 27, 2020 2:42 am PDT by
HBO Max launched today, and is now available on Apple TV, iPhone, and iPad. WarnerMedia's new streaming service, which replaces HBO Now, combines HBO content with shows and films from Warner Bros and Turner TV. The service is available as a native app on the ‌Apple TV‌ HD and ‌Apple TV‌ 4K, but second and third-generation ‌Apple TV‌ owners will need to AirPlay HBO Max content...

Powerbeats Pro Debut in Four New Colors: Spring Yellow, Cloud Pink, Lava Red, and Glacier Blue

Friday May 29, 2020 10:00 am PDT by
Following a couple of leaks in recent weeks, Beats today is officially announcing four new colors for its Powerbeats Pro wireless earphones: Spring Yellow, Cloud Pink, Lava Red, and Glacier Blue. The new earphones will go on sale June 9 and sell for the same $249.95 price as the existing color options. Aside from the colors, the new Powerbeats Pro models are otherwise identical to the...

Anker Launches $100 24K Gold-Plated USB-C to Lightning Cable

Wednesday May 27, 2020 12:47 pm PDT by
Anker, a brand normally known for its well-made, affordable accessories for Apple devices, has debuted a new $100 24K gold-plated USB-C to Lightning cable. According to Anker, the cable, which is in the PowerLine+ III family, features a "Special Edition Gold Design" that's "bold yet elegant" with the aforementioned gold-plated cable heads and matching braided gold and black cable. The...

More Photos and Video of Apple's Redesigned Leather Loop Watch Band Surface

Thursday May 28, 2020 10:50 am PDT by
Images of a new version of the Leather Loop that Apple appears to have in development surfaced yesterday, and today, Vietnamese site Tinhte.vn has shared additional photos and videos that give us a clearer picture of what to expect from the new band. The bands come in colors that include red, hot pink, blue, black, and brown, with some of the bands featuring different colored accents at the...