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Apple's Swift language goes open source

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By making Swift open source, the entire developer community can contribute to the programming language, says Apple.
By making Swift open source, the entire developer community can contribute to the programming language, says Apple.

Apple's Swift language is now open source.

The company says the broad community of developers - from app developers to educational institutions to enterprises - can now contribute to new Swift features and optimisations and help bring Swift to new computing platforms.

Introduced in 2014, Swift is the fastest growing programming language, according to Apple. It combines the performance and efficiency of compiled languages with the simplicity and interactivity of popular scripting languages.

The company has also launched the Swift.org Web site with information about Swift open source, including technical documentation, community resources and links to download the Swift source code.

"Swift's power and ease of use will inspire a new generation to get into coding, and with today's announcement they'll be able to take their ideas anywhere, from mobile devices to the cloud," says Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice-president of software engineering.

The Swift open source code is available via GitHub and includes support for all Apple software platforms - iOS, OS X, watchOS and tvOS - as well as for Linux.

Components available include the Swift compiler, debugger, standard library, foundation libraries, package manager and REPL.

Swift is licenced under the Apache 2.0 open source licence with a runtime library exception, enabling users to easily incorporate Swift into their own software and port the language to new platforms.

For more information about Swift, and access to community resources visit Swift.org.

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