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Chris Lattner is credited with creating Swift, a programming language used for iOS, macOS and Linux.

Tesla appears to have poached one of Apple's top software experts, Christ Lattner, to serve as an Autopilot executive.

Lattner is credited with spearheading development of Swift, a new programming language created for Apple's software platforms, including iOS and macOS, and supported by Linux. He was also lead author of the LLVM Compiler Infrastructure, an open-source project that is said to be used in academic research and commercial products.

"Chris's reputation for engineering excellence is well known," Tesla said in a statement. "We are very excited that Chris is joining Tesla to lead our Autopilot engineering team and accelerate the future of autonomous driving."

Tesla's latest Model S and Model X are now rolling off the assembly line with second-generation Autopilot hardware. The company suggests the latest sensor suite and computer systems are capable of fully autonomous operation. Further software development consequently stands as the last hurdle before such features roll out via over-the-air updates.

The automaker hopes to demonstrate a fully autonomous coast-to-coast drive by the end of the year.