[swift-evolution] Proposal: Extend the &x -> UnsafePointer behavior to work with immutable values

Kevin Ballard kevin at sb.org
Wed Dec 16 16:30:21 CST 2015

On Wed, Dec 16, 2015, at 02:09 PM, Jacob Bandes-Storch wrote:
> +1.
> On Wed, Dec 16, 2015 at 11:44 AM, Kevin Ballard via swift-evolution
> <swift-evolution at swift.org> wrote:
>> # Alternatives
Do nothing and hope that at some point Swift introduces some form of first-
class support for explicit immutable references. That's probably not
happening any time soon.
> What are you envisioning?

Not really envisioning much at the moment. Adding unsafe references
would not be very good (and would be basically what we already have with
UnsafePointer anyway). Personally I'm a big fan of Rust's lifetime
system which allows for safe compile-time-checked references, but it
does have a bit of a learning curve and is probably the most confusing
part of Rust for newcomers, which is why I'm not proposing adding it to
Swift as it would be incompatible with using Swift as a teaching
language (I'm not sure how important that use-case is to the Swift core
team but I know there's a lot of community interest there).

-Kevin Ballard
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