Two years after its introduction, the Swift programming language finds itself at rank # 14 on the TIOBE index for July 2016. Some of the prime reasons for Swift’s meteoric rise are its carefully designed syntax and semantics - it borrows heavily from the best features of a wide range of languages. The syntax is intuitive and new Swift learners can often relate it to the language of their choice. Introduced primarily as a client-side language, Swift was open sourced in December 2015 via swift.org. Since then, there has been a community effort on extending its capabilities to the server side too. Swift is available on Linux today, and it is poised to become a language enabling end to end development - from mobile apps to server backends.
Swift falls in the category of “modern native languages” - like Rust and Go. These runtimes run code in bare metal, boosting performance. They are statically, strongly typed and with type-inference. This makes them safe. Their modern syntax also makes them expressive enough for high level abstractions like those seen in functional programming. They try to solve some of the tradeoffs that languages of the past battled with. On the other hand, functional programming has found new oxygen in the last couple of years when agile methodologies become as pervasive as multicore hardware . While we do have languages like Haskell that are purely functional and provide excellent support to express functional concepts, it is important to separate functional thinking away from the language. Functional programming is supported by most of the languages today because the returns of it in terms of expression, conciseness, readability, correctness and performance are unmatched. Swift is not a purely functional language. However, it provides syntactic and semantic support for functional programming to a large extent.