Introduction

Since Apple introduced the Swift programming language in 2014, it has become one of the most rapidly adopted computer programming languages in history. Programmers love the modern syntax used by Swift and the way it’s fun to develop code, similar to how they felt about Java a generation ago. Programming skills and experience in Swift are in high demand in the industry, with the promise of high salaries for those who invest the time to learn and practice the language.

Apple originally introduced Swift as an alternative language to Objective-C for developing iPhone, iPad, and macOS applications. The company has now expanded Swift into the realm of solutions for the Internet of Things, with support for tvOS (Apple TV) and watchOS (Apple Watch wearable devices). As illustrated in Figure 1, Swift is now one of the most popular open source projects and Swift frameworks such as Kitura are gaining ground quickly.

Graph shows popularity of open projects from pre- 2009 to 2016 versus 2.5K to 30K+ with plots for RAILS, node, django, Spark, MySQL, cassandra, openstack, kafka, et cetera.

Figure 1: Popularity of the Swift programming language

At about the same time that Swift was first introduced, Apple and IBM formed a strategic partnership to produce innovative, industry-specific mobile applications for the Apple iOS ecosystem. IBM proceeded to embrace the Swift programming language and implemented over 100 mobile apps as part of this partnership. IBM engineers saw the value of Swift firsthand in these applications. The open source release ...

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