If you don’t know who Chris Lattner is yet, you will soon. Lattner is the brains behind Apple’s biggest and best new product. No, it isn’t a phablet like the Galaxy S5, or a new version of the iPad. Lattner has been working tirelessly, and in complete secrecy for four years on a brand-new, instinctual computer programming language. The language is called Swift and Apple released a test version of it to coders outside the company on June 2 of this year. It has been billed as a faster and more effective way to build software apps for iPhones, iPads and Macs.
Usually, when a new programming language appears out of nowhere like Swift has, it will take years to reach a mass audience and become the norm. For example, Google launched a new language in 2009 called Go and even though it was designed by some of the biggest names in software design, it is still struggling to win over a major following. Swift is different because it is expected to achieve mass adoption almost immediately. It is built for the average programmer plus, with the popularity of apps for the full range of Apple products, developers all over the world will be eager and willing to embrace Swift and all the new features it brings. Lattner’s goals in creating this language were to make coding easier, provide an easier way to learn how to program, and to bring this skill-set to an entirely new type of person. He said, “I hope that by making programming more approachable and fun, we’ll appeal to the next generation of programmers and help redefine how computer science is taught.”