10 features Apple 'stole' for the Swift programming language

Apple's new programming language modernizes iOS development by synthesizing great ideas invented elsewhere
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What Apple borrowed in creating Swift

To paraphrase the saying, good artists borrow, but great ones steal. However you look at it, Apple has nicked a number of features in creating Swift, its recently unveiled programming language for iOS. Swift may technically be "new," but look closely at the documentation, and you'll see Swift more as a collection of popular ideas employed in other programming languages, mashed together under a new name.

Following are the most prominent features of Swift and a glimpse at their origins, which often includes a chain of languages going back decades. This chain isn't definitive; in many cases the source of Swift's inspiration borrowed the idea from yet an earlier language. It's a long tradition of innovation.

The illustrations are from the Swift documentation.

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