As we said earlier, an important part of making these platforms so capable is our developers. We believe it’s crucial that we provide the best tools, so you can create the best apps. That’s why we created Swift. Swift is a powerful and intuitive programming language for iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS. And writing Swift code is fun and interactive and apps written in it are lightning fast.
Since we released Swift less than two years ago, we’ve seen an amazing response from the developer community. There is already more than 100,000 apps that have adopted the use of Swift code, including great apps like Twitter and Strava and Lyft. Now we wanted everyone to use Swift. So we released it as open source in December. And since then the adoption has been amazing. It’s already the number one language project on GitHub.
Swift is powerful but it’s also simple and it’s approachable. So it can be your very first programming language. This is a very important point for us because Swift is so easy to learn. It has the potential to bring many more people into coding. And this is an idea we would like to take even further.
So today we’re introducing a new app for iPad. We call it Swift Playgrounds. Swift Playgrounds will revolutionize the way people learn to code. And they’ll be able to do it right on their iPad which instantly makes it accessible for hundreds of millions of people around the world. There has never been anything like this. We believe it’s the absolute best way to teach everyone to code, combining the powerful Swift programming language and the powerful capabilities of iPad. To show it to you, I’d like to invite Cheryl Thomas up. Cheryl?
Cheryl Thomas – Apple VP of Software Engineering
Thank you, Tim. I am thrilled to show you Swift Playgrounds and incredible new apps that transforms how kids learn to code. I will launch it right now.
We land on this gorgeous screen full of custom content from Apple, up at the top our lessons and down below we have challenges. I’m going to start with the very first lesson in the fundamentals of Swift. We see a preview of the content with graphics and a description and I’ll open it.
It starts with an introduction to the coding concept I will be learning and when I’m good and ready, I can just tap in the lower corner to start coding. Over on the right, you can see we have an interactive world that I can explore using Touch. I will swipe it, looks good and pinch to zoom. This is Byte. He is my character. I think he’s irresistible. And I’ll be controlling him with code.
Over on the left are instructions that explain and help guide me through the problem I will be solving and down below is where I enter my code. Byte has been waiting patiently. So I will tap to enter Swift code. You can see commands have appeared at the bottom. These are just like QuickType suggestions but for code. My objective in this lesson is to get him to the end of that path and collect the gem. So I’ll tap move forward three times and then collect gem.
Watch the world on the right as I run my code. Byte moves forward. He follows the commands in the exact order I’ve entered, gets the gem and I’ve completed my very first lesson. Kids are going to love them.
Now I can continue to the next lesson in the series, or I can jump around to wherever I’d like. To do that, I tap in the top left to open the table of contents. And you can see we include a ton of great content here to engage and motivate learners. This one on loops, looping all the sides looks a little interesting. I am going to check it out.
Now we have a few lines of code already filled in. I’ll go ahead and run it and see what happens. Byte moves forward. He gets the gem. But then he stalks. Oh, poor little guy. He is going to need some help. The solution here — and I know you’ve all got this is that I need to repeat that block of code 4 times to get Byte around all four sides of the world. To do that I am going to need a four loop. I’ll tap the plus up top to open my code library. And all I have to do is just drag a four-loop right in to my code. Now watch this. I can tap that loop. Grab the end of it and just drag it all around my code.
All right. I’ll tap the number placeholder, set this loop to repeat four times; looks good. OK, keep your eyes on Byte as I run my code. He moves forward, gets the gem, makes it turn and this time with the added four-loop, he just keeps on going. I finished another lesson and I’m well on my way to mastering loops. Wouldn’t this have been cool when we were all learning to code? I mean come on, you students. Let me hear, come on!
Swift Playgrounds is a fantastic app to master the basics but it doesn’t stop there. Let me show you. I will tap in the top left corner to go to my library of playgrounds. I can also explore advanced coding and use the power of the iOS SDK to do almost anything I’d like. I happen to have something I’ve been working on. It combines my two favorite things: physics and emoji interestingly.