What's this _value property?

I first noticed this in the REPL:

$ swift
Welcome to Apple Swift version 4.2 (swiftlang-1000.0.36 clang-1000.0.4). Type :help for assistance.

  1> let a = 123
a: Int = 123

  2> let b = (123)     // Note how, just because I wrapped 123 in parens,
b: (Int) = {           // the type of `b` is shown as a single element
  _value = 123         // tuple (even though there's supposedly no such thing),
}                      // it's (unlabeled) single element labeled "_value". 

  3> b._value          // And I can access this element/property of b. 
$R0: Int64 = 123

  4> b._value + b._value // But it seems to be a special kind of Int64 ...
error: repl.swift:4:10: error: binary operator '+' cannot be applied to two 'Int64' operands
b._value + b._value
~~~~~~~~ ^ ~~~~~~~~

repl.swift:4:10: note: overloads for '+' exist with these partially matching parameter lists: (Float, Float), (Double, Double), (Float80, Float80), (UInt8, UInt8), (Int8, Int8), (UInt16, UInt16), (Int16, Int16), (UInt32, UInt32), (Int32, Int32), (UInt64, UInt64), (Int64, Int64), (UInt, UInt), (Int, Int), (String, String), (Self, Self.Stride), (Self.Stride, Self), (Self, Other), (Other, Self)
b._value + b._value
         ^


  4> a._value     // Turns out that this _value-thing is present even for
$R1: Int64 = 123  // eg regular Ints, like a that we defined without parents above.

This is Xcode 10.0 beta 6 (10L232m), default toolchain.

It's not specific to the REPL, for example the following (cmd line) program compiles and runs, and shows some other mysterious properties of this _value thing:

let a: UInt8 = 255
print(type(of: a._value)) // Prints "Builtin.Int8", why not "Builtin.UInt8"?
print(a._value) // (Opaque Value)

let b: Float80 = 1.23
print(type(of: b._value)) // Prints "Builtin.Int128".
print(b._value) // (Opaque Value)

The REPL is a bit more explicit about the above:

$ swift
Welcome to Apple Swift version 4.2 (swiftlang-1000.0.36 clang-1000.0.4). Type :help for assistance.
  1> let a: UInt8 = 255
a: UInt8 = 255
  2> type(of: a._value)
$R0: Int8.Type = Builtin.Int8
  3> a._value
$R1: Int8 = -1
  4> let b: Float80 = 1.23
b: Float80 = 1.23000000000000000002
  5> type(of: b._value)
$R2: FPIEEE80.Type = Builtin.FPIEEE80
  6> b._value
$R3: FPIEEE80 = 1.23000000000000000002

I guess that _value is supposed to be internal to the compiler implementation, but it would be interesting to know more about it.

What you're looking at is this.

It's just the declaration of the storage within the type.

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The Builtin.IntX refer to LLVM types, of which there are no unsigned equivalents. The instructions performed on those values define their semantics (signed or unsigned, or apparently 80-bit floating point).

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Thank you both. I guess it isn't supposed to manifest itself in user code (and on top of that, in the form of a labeled element of a supposedly nonexisting unlabeled single element tuple) though?

Yeah, it's not supposed to manifest in user code; these things are supposed to be rendered at a higher level.

https://bugs.swift.org/browse/SR-8665

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