Swift


'Swift' Articles

Swift Knowledge Quickly Becoming One of the Most In-Demand Skills for Freelance Developers

Popular freelancing website Upwork today released its quarterly study ranking the fastest-growing skills employers are looking for, and Apple's Swift programming language scored the number two spot, meaning it's one of the most sought after skills for freelance developers. Swift, along with the other top 10 skills that made the list in the fourth quarter of 2016, experienced more than 200 percent year-over-year growth. Other skills that have become more essential on Upwork alongside Swift include natural language processing, Tableau, Amazon Marketplace Web Services, and Stripe. Introduced in 2014, Swift is Apple's programming language, developed in part by Chris Lattner who made headlines recently when he left Apple for Tesla. Designed to be concise yet expressive, Swift replaces Objective-C and is being increasingly adopted by developers. Swift is meant to be simple to learn, something Apple highlights with Swift Playgrounds, an app that teaches children to code using the Swift language. Apple has been updating and refining Swift since its 2014 debut, and is set to unveil Swift 3.1 in the spring of 2017. Upwork's Skills Index measures year-over-year growth rates based on freelancer billings through the Upwork

Chris Lattner Says Opportunity to Work on Tesla's Ambitious Self-Driving Efforts Was 'Irresistible'

Earlier this month, Swift creator Chris Lattner announced he will be stepping down as director of Apple's Development Tools department to lead Tesla's Autopilot engineering team as VP of Autopilot Software. Lattner did not explain the reason for the move, but he later denied a report claiming he "felt constrained" due to Apple's culture of secrecy. So, we decided to reach out to him to learn about his true motivations. As it turns out, Lattner told MacRumors the answer is actually very simple: he is ready to move on to something new.I've been writing code for more than 30 years, and 16 of those years have been in the developer tools space. I love it, but I am ready to move on to something else. Autopilot is clearly incredibly important to the world because of its ability to save people's lives (and increase convenience). It is also a very, very hard technology problem and my experience building large scale software and team building is useful. Of course, I’ve also been a huge Tesla fan for some time.He added it was "a very difficult decision," but noted the opportunity to work with Tesla's Autopilot team was "irresistible."This was a very difficult decision, because I care deeply about the technology and people at Apple and because I could see myself staying there for many more years. In the end though, the opportunity to dive into a completely new area and work with the amazing Tesla Autopilot team was irresistible.At Tesla, Lattner will help the company achieve one of its biggest goals: fully self-driving vehicles. As of October 2016, Tesla said all vehicles

Tesla-Bound Chris Lattner May Have 'Felt Constrained' by Apple's Culture of Secrecy [Update: Denied]

Earlier this week, Swift creator and LLVM co-author Chris Lattner announced he will be leaving Apple later this month—he is headed to Tesla to lead its autopilot engineering team as Vice President of Autopilot Software. Lattner, who oversaw Xcode among other tasks as director of Apple's Development Tools department, did not provide an explanation for his decision to leave the company, but "someone in Lattner's circle of developer friends" told Business Insider that Apple's culture of secrecy may have been a contributing factor."He always felt constrained at Apple in terms of what he could discuss publicly — resorting to off-the-record chats, surprise presentations, and the like," the person told us. "Similarly, I know he was constrained in recruiting and other areas. Eventually I know that can really wear people down."Lattner, who joined Apple in 2005, did not respond to the publication's requests for comment, so the exact reason for his decision remains uncertain. He previously said the decision "wasn't made lightly," and that he plans to remain an active member of the Swift Core Team despite his departure. What we do know is that Swift now has a large community of developers working on the programming language since it became open source in late 2015, so it is very possible that Lattner felt he was in a good position to pursue a new opportunity without jeopardizing future development of the language he created in 2010. Swift, designed to work with Apple's Cocoa and Cocoa Touch frameworks, was developed for iOS, macOS, watchOS, tvOS, and Linux. The programming

Swift and Xcode Head Chris Lattner Leaving Apple for Tesla This Month [Updated]

Chris Lattner, director of Apple's Developer Tools group, has announced he will be leaving the company later this month to "pursue an opportunity in another space." Lattner was responsible for leading the teams behind Xcode, Swift, and some other development-related tools and compilers at Apple. In a message posted to the Swift mailing list, shared by MacStories, Lattner said Ted Kremenek, currently Senior Manager of Languages and Runtimes at Apple, will be taking over as "Project Lead" for the Swift programming language, managing the "administrative and leadership responsibility" for Swift.org.This recognizes the incredible effort he has already been putting into the project, and reflects a decision I’ve made to leave Apple later this month to pursue an opportunity in another space. This decision wasn't made lightly, and I want you all to know that I’m still completely committed to Swift. I plan to remain an active member of the Swift Core Team, as well as a contributor to the swift-evolution mailing list.Lattner said he does not expect his resignation to impact day-to-day operations of the Swift team in any significant way. He also noted Apple's development of Swift 4 will continue under Kremenek. Apple previously said it will shift its focus to Swift 4 after Swift 3.1 is released over the coming months. Latter is best known as the main author of the LLVM Compiler Infrastructure Project, a collection of modular and reusable compiler and toolchain technologies. He started development of Swift in 2010, and the open source programming language was introduced for

Apple Details Swift 3.1 Ahead of Planned Spring 2017 Release

Apple has announced it is on track to release Swift 3.1 in the spring of 2017, corresponding to some point between March and June. Swift 3.1 is intended to be source compatible with Swift 3.0 and will contain a few enhancements to the core programming language. Improvements will also be made to the Swift Package Manager, Swift on Linux, compiler, and Standard Library. Swift 3.1 development should conclude around January 16, 2017 for major changes, at which point Apple's focus will turn to the development of Swift 4. Swift is Apple's open source programming language for macOS, iOS, watchOS, tvOS, and Linux. Swift 3.0 was released in September with major improvements and refinements to the core language and Standard Library, major additions to the Linux port of Swift, and the first official release of the Swift Package

iOS 10: Taking a Closer Look at Apple's 'Swift Playgrounds' for iPad

At WWDC last week, Apple revealed its all-new Swift Playgrounds iPad app, which aims to help younger users learn how to code in Apple's programming language by making the experience more interactive and fun. For those unfamiliar with Swift, the open-source language was announced by Apple at WWDC 2014, and developed over four years to be "concise and expressive" in order to make coding for iOS, Mac, Apple TV, and Apple Watch more approachable. Using Swift Playgrounds, Apple invites users to "solve puzzles to master the basics using Swift" and "take on a series of challenges" to step up to more advanced creations. Swift Playgrounds requires no coding knowledge from new learners, but it also "provides a unique way for seasoned developers to quickly bring ideas to life," claims the company. Users start out by learning the underlying concepts of coding, like commands, functions, loops, parameters, conditional code, variables, operators, types, initialization, and bug fixing. The learning takes place as users create code on the left side of the screen, while they observe the results on the right side in real time. Learning to code with Swift Playgrounds is incredibly engaging. The app comes with a complete set of Apple-designed lessons. Play your way through the basics in "Fundamentals of Swift" using real code to guide a character through a 3D world. Then move on to more advanced concepts.The Swift Playground interface supports the iPad's Multi-Touch capabilities, and lets students tap, drag, or type text and numbers, and then interact with their creations.

How a Nine-Year-Old Australian Landed a Coveted WWDC Apple Scholarship

During Apple's opening keynote address at this week's Worldwide Developer's Conference in San Francisco, CEO Tim Cook gave a shout-out to Anvitha Vijay, the youngest ever developer to attend WWDC. Aged just nine, Vijay applied for and won one of 350 coveted Apple scholarships to attend the conference's coding and programming sessions, which are typically dominated by high school and college students. According to Fortune, the number of women who applied for Apple's scholarship also tripled this year compared to 2015. Anvitha Vijay, the 9-year-old developer at WWDC 2016 (Image: USA Today) A resident of Melbourne, Australia, Vijay was selected for a scholarship after she created an iOS app called Smartkins Animals, which lets young users have fun exploring the sights and sounds of over 100 animals. Prior to WWDC, the app had been downloaded "a few hundred times". "It was like a dream to be here and meet so many people," Vijay said, speaking to USA Today. "I've just touched the tip of the iceberg in coding, there's so much to learn." Vijay, who has Indian heritage, began teaching herself coding skills at the age of seven by watching YouTube instructional videos and using her mum's iPhone (users have to be aged at least 13 to hold an iTunes account). She said she was motivated to make an app using Xcode to teach her younger sister how to identify the names of animals. "I want to be an innovator, to build things that people will love and benefit from," said Vijay as she handed WWDC attendees her business card, on which reads the motto: "I want to make a

Apple Releases First Preview of Swift 3.0 for Developers [Update: Not Available]

Apple yesterday released the first preview build of Swift 3.0, a major update to Apple's open source Swift programming language. Swift 3.0's official release is expected to come in late 2016 after proposed changes are finalized. The Swift 3.0 preview can be downloaded from the official Swift website. There are versions of Swift 3.0 available for Xcode 7.2, Ubuntu 14.04, and Ubuntu 15.10. Swift 3.0 is not source compatible with Swift 2.2 as it introduces source-breaking changes, but going forward, the goal is to make Swift 3.0 source compatible with future Swift language updates. To meet that goal, Swift 3.0 "focuses on getting the basics right for the long term." Apple will likely show off Swift 3.0 at its upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference, debuting it alongside iOS 10, OS X 10.12, and new versions of tvOS and watchOS. Update 5/2: Apple tells iMore it did not release a preview of Swift 3.0, it was instead an automated build. The links have been removed.Apple clarified for iMore that what we thought was a preview release of Swift 3.0 was, in fact, just an automated build. The computer-generated name caused some confusion, but it's meant as a place where outside developers can submit work in preparation for a preview release of Swift 3. There have been no new previews or releases, and the links have been removed. We've likewise updated this story.

IBM Bringing Swift to the Cloud for Simpler Development of Enterprise Apps

IBM has announced that it is bringing Apple's Swift development language to the cloud to simplify end-to-end development of enterprise apps. Swift will be available as a server-side language on IBM Cloud, and today's phase of the rollout includes a preview of a Swift runtime and a Swift Package Catalog.Developers can start exploring the benefits of Swift on the IBM Cloud in three ways: - Experiment in the Swift Sandbox: Quickly experiment with open sourced Swift, ramp up your skill set and learn what Swift can do for your enterprise by checking out new enhancements to the Swift Sandbox. - Develop and Deploy: Start building end-to-end applications on Bluemix and quickly deploy them with Kitura, a new open source web server released by IBM, on both OSX and Linux. - Share Swift Resources: Leverage code across projects by creating packages and submitting them to the Swift Package Catalog on Bluemix to encourage sharing of new Swift resources with the global developer community.Apple and IBM announced an enterprise partnership in July 2014, released the first ten MobileFirst for iOS apps by year end and have launched new apps periodically since. MobileFirst for iOS apps are designed in a secure environment, and can easily be deployed, managed and upgraded through IBM cloud services. Apple and IBM list all of the MobileFirst for iOS apps on their

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. 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

OS X 10.11 Could Feature Control Center, 'Rootless' Security and More, iOS 9 to Support A5-Based Devices

While OS X Yosemite introduced several new high-profile features, such as Handoff, iCloud Drive and Instant Hotspot, the focus of OS X 10.11 will be on improved stability and performance, new security features and system-wide interface tweaks, according to a lengthy report by 9to5Mac. OS X 10.11 is still expected to gain a handful of noteworthy features, including a systemwide change to Apple Watch font San Francisco and a new Control Center menu similar to iPhone and iPad. Control Center was originally found in early betas of OS X Yosemite, but was not included in the final release."Control Center moves many of the controls from the Mac’s Menu Bar to a pane that slides out from the left side of the Mac’s display, adding on-screen music controls and other iOS-influenced features," the report claims. "However, Control Center reportedly has been in flux during development, and could be pushed back again." A possible first look at Control Center for Mac on OS X from 2014 Apple is also reportedly working on a major new kernel-level security system called "Rootless" for OS X and iOS that will help curb malware and protect sensitive data by prohibiting users from accessing certain protected files on Mac and iOS devices. "Rootless" appears to be a permanent feature of iOS, much to the chagrin of the jailbreaking community, but can likely be disabled on OS X. Apple plans to enhance security one step further by converting many of its core IMAP-based applications on OS X and iOS, such as Notes, Reminders, and Calendar, to have an iCloud Drive backend. Apple expects there to

Apple's Swift Programming Language Proving Popular With Developers

Apple's new Swift programming language is growing rapidly in popularity according to RedMonk's latest Programming Language Rankings. The analysis ranks the future popularity of programming languages based on the amount of discussion on Stack Overflow and the usage on Github. As expected, the top programming languages ranked by RedMonk include JavaScript, Java, and PHP in the top three slots with Objective-C rounding out the top ten. Though it does not rank as high as its Objective-C counterpart, Swift was singled out by the researchers for growth that "is essentially unprecedented in the history of these rankings." In two calendar quarters, Swift has climbed from the 68th slot in Q3 2014 to the 22nd slot in Q1 2015, a jump of 46 slots. Given this meteoric rise, Swift is expected to become a Top 20 language sometime this year. According to Chris Lattner, head of Apple's Developer Tools department, the Swift programming language was in development for four years before its official unveiling during WWDC 2014. From its conception, Swift was designed to be more approachable and fun, allowing developers to produce apps quickly and easily. Developers can use Swift code to build new apps or to add it alongside Objective-C into existing apps.