Apple's Swift Programming Language: 10 Fascinating Facts

Swift 2.0 is Apple's main language used for programming OS X and iOS systems. Here are 10 things you should know about Swift before you dive in.
If You Know Objective C, You've Got a Head Start
You Can Take Swift To The Playground
Swift Is (Going) Open Source
You Can Take A Slow Path To Swift
Swift Is A Great Learning Tool
Swift Has Bugs
You'll Still Work In Xcode
Swift Is For All Things Apple
Swift Is Coming To Linux
You Can Still Read The Library Crystal Ball

With new Apple products around the corner, enterprise developers and commercial programmers alike are looking at how to move new applications onto Apple's Mac OS X and iOS platforms.

There are a bunch of options, but if you want to do it the Official Apple Way you're going to use Swift.

Swift was introduced at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) 2014 as a replacement for Objective C, Apple's long-time programming language. At WWDC 2015, Swift 2.0 was announced with a number of improvements and changes, including Apple's commitment to make Swift an open source language. It's too soon to know precisely how an open source future will effect Swift 2.0, but the ability to use Swift for Linux (as promised by Apple) and, perhaps, Windows systems can't hurt the language's popularity.

[What to learn more about mobile programming languages? Here's InformationWeek's list of the best ones.]

How much should you care about Swift? Well, that depends on how much your plans involve applications for Apple platforms. If they are part of your plan, then you'll want to know some facts about the language, and we're here to help.

How does Swift stack up against other platform-specialized languages, like C#? Much of the answer depends on your needs and your taste in programming tools. Take a look at these Swift facts and let us know what you think: Could Swift become one of the major languages used around the computer industry, or will it forever be tied to Apple? And if you're currently using Swift we'd love to hear from you. What interesting facts did we miss? We'll look forward to the discussion in the comments section below.

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