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Swift: new Apple programming language

Categorie Programmazione

Apple introduced Swift at the WWDC 2014. It isn’t a new smartphone, tablet or computer, but it works for them: it’s the programming language which aims to be the best language of the App Store. The most used language for applications development was Objective-C, but now Swift could change the situation.

Objective-C is ‘old’, its first appearance was in the 1983 and it almost hasn’t changed since then. While everything innovates, new devices are still using the same language of thirty years ago. But it’s hard to bring a big innovation and to force everyone to use it. Swift was added in the right way: the language is similiar to the previous one, helping programmers in the learning, and it works with Objective-C too. This means that we can use both languages at the same time for the same app. So an application already in the making can be improved and updated using Swift.

What are the real qualities of this programming language?
Apple states that Swift is about 2.6 times faster than Objective-C and about 8.4 times faster than Python 2.7. The new language is safer, because it manages memory automatically and it removes some bugs. Moreover “Playgrounds make writing Swift code incredibly simple and fun”, because while we type a line of code, we can immediately see the result, so we can correct some errors or do some changes.


A few days after the presentation of Swift, a lot of programmers started to publish lessons, both in written and video forms, to teach the language to beginners. Swift is easier to learn, for those who started programming for the first time. Apple helps them too, because it offers courses on iTunes and it published a manual for free download on iBook: The Swift Programming Language. However, it is recommended to know a bit about programming, mostly the object-oriented one.

It’s important to remember that Swift, as often Apple does with its software innovations, works only for the company’s devices, which guarantees many systems that work with this language. We can indeed make apps for iPhones, iPods and iPads, for computers with OS X and for the new Apple Watches.

Although we can use Swift only for a certain type of products, it is an innovative programming language which is designed to help us to create and to improve our apps, in order to attract new users.


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