Last year, Apple introduced a new programming language, called Swift. Meant primarily to help developers code applications for iOS and Mac machines, Swift grew at a modest pace for the first year.
Recetly, Apple took a major step: Swift is now fully open source, and is accessible to anyone via GitHub or a brand new website: Swift.org
As a result, Swift now runs on Linux, and the fact that it is open source means developers, if interested, can port it to Windows or Android as well.
Of course, this is not the first time that Apple has released something as open source. For example, WebKit, Safari’s browser engine, has been open source for quite a while. That said, Apple is one of the last firms that can be expected to fully adhere to open source philosophy and as such, Swift being released as open source is indeed a welcome gesture.
While you can download and build apps using the open source version of Swift right away, such apps will currently not be accepted into the App Store. For that purpose, you will have to rely on the “official” version of Swift. This might come as a small road-block towards the growth of open source Swift, but Apple has plans of setting up a bug tracking system, a mailing list as well as a dedicated blog for Swift, and possibly syncing up “official” Swift and “open source” Swift at regular intervals.
What do you think of the open source version of Swift? Share your thoughts in the comments below!