Chris Lattner, director of the Developer Tools department at Apple and the author of Swift, has left the company to join Tesla where he will be the Vice President of Autopilot Software. Lattner lead the team at Apple working on Xcode, Swift, and other development tools that the company offers.
Lattner announced that he is leaving Apple later this month through the Swift mailing list. He also announced that Ted Kremenek will be the new Project Lead for Swift at Apple. He did reaffirm that he still is “completely committed” to Swift and plans on being an active member of the Swift Core Team. He ends his announcement by noting that his departure is not going to impact the day-to-day workings of the Swift team in any significant way.
Soon after the news of Lattner leaving Apple became public, Tesla published a post on its blog welcoming him to the team.
We would like to welcome Chris Lattner, who will join Tesla as our Vice President of Autopilot Software. Chris’s reputation for engineering excellence is well known. He comes to Tesla after 11 years at Apple where he was primarily responsible for creating Swift, the programming language for building apps on Apple platforms and one of the fastest growing languages for doing so on Linux. Prior to Apple, Chris was lead author of the LLVM Compiler Infrastructure, an open source umbrella project that is widely used in commercial products and academic research today.
Lattner has worked for over 11 years at Apple, and there is no denying the fact that him leaving the company will be a huge blow to it.
Both Apple and Tesla frequently poach employees from each other, with Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk calling Apple the ‘Tesla Graveyard.’