Kotlin Programming Language: The Java Alternative

What is Kotlin Programming Language
Kotlin Programming language

What is Kotlin Programming language?

Kotlin is a general-purpose programming language that is free and open-source. It is based on type inference. Kotlin is primarily for Android application development. Kotlin was originated at JetBrains in 2010 and sponsored via Kotlin foundation by JetBrains and Google. 

Kotlin is not an independent programming language, but it’s a novel way to code that is run by using Java. Kotlin is designed in a way that its syntax is not compatible with Java but is interoperable with Java codes and run on the JVM. The version of JVM of the standard library depends on the class library. The feature of type inference is useful here, which allows the codes and syntax to be more compact. 

In the current trends of modern mobile app development, the things that help Kotlin in standing out from other languages is its safety, tool support, and interoperability. You can say that Kotlin is a concise version of Java and is a lot more streamlined to work with. JetBrains has also claimed that Kotlin works equally well with iOS applications as it does with the Android applications. 

Which are the highlighting features of Kotlin?

  • Concise code

This feature makes Kotlin one of the favourite languages of developers. Clean and concise code leads to a significant decrease in time for coding, reading and maintaining the code. When compared to Java, Kotlin requires approximately 40% fewer lines of code. Thus, increasing the development speed of your application.

  • Single & comprehensive type system

The Kotlin types system is quite simple making it more preferable. It offers some amazing features such as type inference, null support, universal guard and more. Kotlin’s complete type system is organized by two types: supertype and subtype. Supertype represents all non-nullable types called Any. And Subtype represents any type without any instance called Nothing.

  • Null safety

To boost data consistency, Kotlin comes with an inbuilt Null safety feature that provides security to the codes from data classes. Java has no solution to offer for NullPointerException, the application developers have to figure out on their own. While Kotlin makes sure that any type does not have a value of null. Due to the NullPointerException of Java, more than 70% of the application crashes and Kotlin can save you from these crashes. 

  • Expressive code

Kotlin is a really simple and understandable language, even a person who has never coded in Kotlin can understand the code. All the functions, data types and other elements are designed in a way that can be interpreted easily and used in the desired way. Thus, Kotlin is said to have expressive code to make things easier for the developers. 

  • Immutability

Immutability is one of the most magical features of Kotlin. It does not allow any object or its variation to undergo any change after they are created. If you wish to make any changes in the case properties after the creation of the object, then you need to make a clone of the object or whichever variable you are wishing to change. Kotlin makes sure that there are no concurrency or synchronization issues due to immutability.

  • Modern features

Kotlin is ascended from around six different languages and being a fourth-generation language, Kotlin has a number of modern function that can make your programming as swift as possible. Apart from inheriting the exciting feature from the six languages, Kotlin has also introduced features such as null safety, Lambda function, operator overloading, and more. All these functions can increase your productivity in leaps and bounds. 

  • Interoperability with Java

You can easily call Kotlin code from Java and Java code from Kotlin. You can even use an automated Java to Kotlin converter that will simplify the migration process and make the development process faster. Interoperability with Java can work for you in a number of especially when it comes to Android application development. You can save the original Java code files and make changes in the new Kotlin file to create new features. 

Why should you choose Kotlin?

  • Kotlin provides a mature environment. When compared to other languages, Kotlin was released after going through a number of revisions and so you will hardly face any issues while working with Kotlin. 
  • Kotlin was developed keeping an easy transition from Java in mind. Any Java developer can easily understand the code written in Kotlin. The only thing a developer needs to learn is to understand the concepts that Java lacks and Kotlin offers. 
  • Kotlin offers an easy setup feature and does not require any additional plugin. Android Studio 3.0 comes with an in-built feature that says, “ Support Kotlin Development”. 
  • Kotlin is an open-source language that allows core product development and takes relatively less time to convert Kotlin code to Java.
  • With Kotlin, you can seamlessly integrate with Android Studio and set up any project ready to work in less than 10 minutes. 
  • Reduce the boilerplate code that you require frequently and save your time. So, code less, debug less, and thus save time and space.

By now you might have understood that Kotlin is a programming language that is relatively easy to learn and develop applications with it. Provided that it is highly interoperable with Java, this can be a good option for the Java developers. This article was crafted to encompass the highlighting features and usefulness of Kotlin. There are a number of giants that have their applications developed in Kotlin such as Pinterest, Square, etc. With its increasing popularity, Kotlin has its latest versions equipped with all the features required for Android application development. The latest version of Kotlin was released on 23rd March and is rigged with exciting features. Everything you need to know about Kotlin programming language is here.

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