What does this buzzword mean?
Kotlin is a statically typed programming language developed by the Russian company JetBrains. The first beta version was released in 2011, and the final release occurred in 2016. The language is named in honor of the island of Kotlin in the Gulf of Finland, which is the town of Kronstadt. It is also known that more than $15 million has been invested in the development of the language. One of the purposes of Kotling is popularizing the Inteliji Idea company and increasing it’s sales.
Here are the main features and benefits of Kotlin:
- language is very simple to learn;
- source code is open;
- in the development environment, IntelliJ provides automatic conversion of Java code to Kotlin and back;
- language-null-safe — annoying NullPointerException remained in Java. Here is the code example:
What if the project has been written in Java? Well, it is not a problem. Java code can be safely converted to Kotlin and back. Also indisputable advantage is the full compatibility with Java language, so it allows to use all existing Java frameworks and libraries, which amount is incalculably.
Kotlin can really help you to reduce the amount of code.
Effective example: simple functions and structures can be declared in one line. Getters and setters are defined in Kotlin themselves.
Declaration of variables in Java:
The same code in Kotlin:
That’s great, isn’t it ?
These features and benefits could not hide from developers, so popularity of use the language quickly gained. In January 2017 Kotlin held 88th place among the most popular programming languages, and in November held 48th place.
The popularity began growing in May of 2017, when the at the conference Google I/O 2017,was announced that Kotlin would be included in the list of officially supported languages for developing Android apps.
According to the report Realm, platforms for mobile development, this announcement increased Kotlin ratings more than twice. The percentage of language use for developing Android apps has increased from 7.4% in May to the conference to 14.7% at the end of September 2017. If such growth rates continue, Kotlin reaches 51% of the Android market development by December 2018.
Among Android developers, programming language Kotlin is the analogue of Swift for developers on iOS. Apple also introduced this language as a simpler to use alternative to Objective-C.
Experts from Realm noticed:
“This thing is clear: the completion of Java using with Android is nearing. As a fact, 20% of the applications written in Java to the conference Google I/O 2017, now using Kotlin. In a short time, Android developers do not have the skills Kotlin risk becoming endangered species”.
The consequences of the lawsuit between Google and Oracle
Many believe that Google suggested using Kotlin as one of the major languages for Android development due to the longing litigation with Oracle. Oracle accused Google of using certain Java’s APIs inside Android and required about 10 billion dollars in compensation.
Although Google won a lawsuit, it began searching for alternatives to Java. Along with Kotlin there were considered the language Dart, created by Google, and Swift by Apple. These languages are open source.
To sum up:
Kotlin is the next stage of the Java development, because of its fully compatible. This makes it the great tool for mobile and enterprise applications. And now Kotlin is an official language of Android. It means that you can’t be afraid about your future job, after learning it, and also, this programming language may be a breath of fresh air when you feel the lack of motivation, because it’s simple and user-friendly!