What is Apple up to?
So I watched the Platforms State of the Union last night. Yes, I know, I’m behind the times; WWDC was so a week and a half ago.
What struck me most was how they kept talking about how the APIs and Swift would make code more efficient and execute faster. This struck me as odd because of a complimentary thought: given the hardware we have today, why do we need code that is even faster?
Now, don’t get me wrong. As a budding computer scientist™, I appreciate what Apple is doing. I don’t just appreciate it, I admire it and hope that one day, I too can make such a contribution to the tech world. But on the other hand, neither the A7 nor the Core i7 are slouches. So yes, it’s nice when you have to execute less instructions and get more bang–this means you’ll have better battery life and can do even more–but the question I’m asking is given the current hardware, why do we need languages that are exponentially faster than C? What are we going to be doing in the next near future (say, 3 years or less) that is going to require that the overhead in existing languages is unacceptable. Said differently, what are going to be doing in the near future that will require every bit of hardware possible to solve some task?
Whatever that may be, (and I hope it’s not helping governments, corporations or individuals spy on people) it makes me slightly anxious–in a good way–to wonder what is just around the corner.
—Jeff Bezos in a letter to Amazon.com customers
This is how streaming music should be done.