Last year, Apple brought us Swift, a brand new programming language for both iOS and OS X. When it was first announced, just like other iOS developers, I was thrilled. Advertised as a fast and safe language, Swift has now grown to one of the most popular programming languages. As expected, the company introduced Swift 2 at WWDC this year. In this article, I would like to give a quick update of Swift 2, showing you some of the new features.
We're stepping on the gas this year with Swift 2. We think Swift is the next big programming language, the one we will all do application and systems programming on for 20 years to come. We think it should be everywhere and used by everyone.
- Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering
One big news about Swift 2 is that it'll go open source in late 2015. If you missed the WWDC keynote or have been living under a rock lately, you read it right: Swift goes open source. This is a huge deal. Later this year, Apple will release Swift’s source code to the public, including the compiler and standard libraries, under an OSI-compliant license. Apple will also port the source code to Linux. Developers will be able to contribute to the development of the language and write programs on Linux using Swift. In fact, you’re encouraged to contribute to the development of the language. Probably some days in the future, you'll be able to use Swift to develop Android apps.
Along with this exciting news, Swift 2 includes some new features such as improved error handling, protocol extensions and availability check.
In this article, I will give you a brief overview of the updates.