In a surprise move, Apple has introduced a new programming language called Swift. It is compatible with Apple's native Cocoa and CocoaTouch programming APIs.
Swift, which can be used to develop apps for both iOS and OS X devices, has already been released by the company in the beta version of Xcode 6, which you can download today
, but will not officially be supported by those devices until both iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite are released this fall.
Notably, Apple has said that it can work "along side" Objective-C in projects -- though no doubt the company hopes developers will in time fully adopt it, tying their work to its platforms. The upside, as with its new Metal graphics technology
, is faster performance for apps, Apple says.
You can already download
a book on programming in Swift from Apple's iBooks store. The company has also opened up a developer portal for Swift
which further details the new language and offers links to related resources.