I was going through some saved links and open tabs from June recently while finishing the WWDC collection post. I found a lot of interesting quotes about SwiftUI, Catalyst and the future of Apple platform development, and I decided to steal the idea from @mjtsai and put them together in one place. It might be interesting to look at this 5 or 10 years from now…
“Whole SwiftUI programs fit into tweets 🤯”
“Having now built half a dozen apps using SwiftUI, I can say one thing for sure: going back to UIKit feels like going back to Objective-C. So, be warned – if you dip a toe in SwiftUI you’ll find yourself groaning when you head back to UIKit!”
“I have *never* written a UI for any platform faster than I have with SwiftUI. And I was working with the unfinished version.”
“SwiftUI is legit. I’ve played around with it for about 15 minutes having skipped over most of the docs, and I have a functioning skeleton app. This would’ve been about 10 files and 200 lines of boiler plate 5 years ago. A tip of the hat to friends who build this amazing future”
“Incidentally, this is roughly the first time in 5 years where I feel any urge at all to work on an iOS app from scratch. Seriously, this is exciting stuff!”
“We’ll probably be using it for 10+ years, I’m glad it doesn’t come encumbered with baggage to allow backwards-deploying it for a single years worth of releases”
How it will change Apple platforms
“I’m surely not the only person to think, all week long, that this WWDC marks the end of Apple’s NeXT era and the beginning of the Swift era.”
“It’s early. It has bugs. It’s not nearly complete. Sure. But it’s also how we’re going to write apps in the future.”
“It may be a while before you’re running apps that use SwiftUI and Combine (and who knows what else still to come). We’re in a transition, and transitions take years. But we’ve all just had a glimpse of the next 20 years.”
“Apple announced a lot of stuff today but the the most amazing thing was kind of low-key — SwiftUI is a new way to write code for all their platforms simultaneously that’s incredibly efficient and uses modern programming practices. This is a revolution for Mac programmers.”
“All of us Mac-heads have been bracing for iOS UIKit to get shimmed into the Mac and we’d have to learn that, because it’s crazy for Apple to have two UI frameworks. And we got that today…but we also got a THIRD framework, which both obviates and unifies the existing two!”
“I thought eventually, if we were lucky, we’d get a new UI framework that was Swift from the start and cross-platform, but I did NOT expect it for years and years. I am blown tf away.”
“Don’t underestimate what is going on here: I haven’t been this excited about how we make products since the Carbon to Cocoa transition.
This is an absolutely fundamental change that we’ll be using for decades.”
“It’s still sinking in for me that Apple effectively deprecated ALL of their UI frameworks yesterday. Mac, iOS, tvOS, and watchOS developers are equally displaced.“
“Just last week on @coreint we were talking about what it would take to abandon Apple for another platform. Turns out the “other platform” is also from Apple.”
“When OS X came out, you could build apps with Carbon (the old way) or Cocoa (the new thing from NeXTSTEP that old-timers didn’t know and criticized). Seeing a lot of parallels between that and SwiftUI now. Carbon didn’t win.”
“SwiftUI is the start of a UI system that will be used for decades, like AppKit and UIKit were. One way to make an impact today: Find tools, patterns, and ideas being used by the React community, and write them for SwiftUI. There’s a TON of low hanging fruit out there.”
“We are all Carbon devs now.”
“There were a lot of Mac OS 9 holdouts. They didn’t hold out forever.”
“I think I’m finally wrapping my head around this week’s announcements. What we have been given is a consistent, clear vision for the future of development across _all_ Apple platforms. From a tiny 38mm watch to a 32” Mac we can use a common set of tools & code. Truly incredible.”
“The future of computing is not the iPad. It’s not iOS or touch interfaces. It’s those things and Macs, TVs, watches, the web, and things we haven’t even seen yet.
SwiftUI is Apple saying that there’s no one grand answer, no winner to pick. The future is diverse. I like that.”
SwiftUI vs. Catalyst
“On Monday, Apple effectively debuted Catalyst and deprecated it in one keynote.”
“So all the AppKit developers who were concerned that Marzipan would herald the beginning of the end of AppKit (myself included) can relax.
It won’t be Marzipan (officially Catalyst). It’ll be SwiftUI.”
“SwiftUI is the future of app-making for our community.
UIKit for Mac (Catalyst) is a lateral move. I’m sure this will be super useful for a lot of developers, though not for me personally (since I don’t have an iOS app to move to the Mac).
But AppKit and UIKit both look like old news compared to SwiftUI and the Combine framework.”
“So Catalyst turned out to be “Carbon” I guess.”
“Carbon was basically for apps made for the original Mac OS. (…) kind of a compatibility mode.”
“SwiftUI is the new Cocoa. It’s to UIKit and AppKit what Cocoa was to Carbon.
Marzipan is transitional technology. Once iOS apps are built with SwiftUI, Marzipan will become obsolete.”
“I went into WWDC prepared for Marzipan to be the big story and continue to be amazed both that it isn’t, and that the rumor mill totally missed SwiftUI because they were focused on Catalyst.”
“The other interesting thing to me is how Swift UI still has to be hosted inside a UIKit or AppKit app. It actually massively compliments AppKit by giving AppKit a path to share UI with a UIKit app.
Swift UI may eventually eat the world, but that’s a great migration path.”
“If you’re an AppKit developer right now, the best path doesn’t look like tearing down and porting to Catalyst. It looks like starting to build shared SwiftUI components where you can.”
“The messaging around Catalyst has been very clear and consistent from the start: its purpose is to help you take an iPad app and adapt it to work reasonably well on the Mac. It’s a great alternative to non-native technologies or a massive rewrite. SwiftUI obviates a lot of that.”
“It is 100% preferred to use SwiftUI with the Mac SDK on the Mac. The only case where you’d use it with Catalyst is if you’ve got a large existing iPad codebase you’d like to bring over.”
“Classic was an environment that EVERY developer used, including Apple. It kept important parts of the system available during a transition. (…) But then things like new processor architectures came along and made it a pain in the butt.”
“My guess is that the Catalyst emulation layer will suffer a similar fate. It’s enabling some development to get off the ground quickly (like having a UIView for SwiftUI on macOS.) But eventually SwiftUI will mature to the point where it’s working directly with CALayer.”
“At that point, Catalyst becomes a liability. Updating AppKit and UIKit only benefits old code. And we all know how Apple likes to move things forward.
We’re certainly many years from that point, but I’m fairly certain it will come.”
“Heard that Marzipan and Amber weren’t supposed to launch the same year. Catalyst took longer and SwiftUI was faster ready as what was planned.”
“From what I heard, SwiftUI was originally built to replace WatchKit, which is why watchOS 6 uses it a bunch. It turned out to be so good that other teams at Apple wanted it, so now it’s become the cross-platform UI framework of choice”
“To add to this… Heard that SwiftUI originally was using its own Combine-like framework as both teams were working in secret and didn’t know about each other. Rumor was SwiftUI had to switch to Combine as recently as 3 months ago!”
“Combine goes back before even Swift existed. I’ve been helping the SwiftUI folks for at least three years, and they were probably working on stuff before I knew about it”
> @BugGenerator: How much were you inspired by Flutter?
“Haven’t looked at it”