If you’re not familiar with programming in Android, then chances are you haven’t heard about Kotlin. Kotlin is a new language which is fully interoperable with Java bytecodes. This language was developed by JetBrains who are also the makers of Intellij IDEA. Kotlin started out as a third party language and it was first released on February 15, 2016 but was open sourced back in 2012. And after a year, In May 2017 google announced their first class support for Kotlin on Android programming.
JetBrains is a Czech Java developer company. They found java limited and thought of something much more improved. So they looked into existing JVM languages and borrowed many features from other languages as well as created new exciting features and combined all of them into one language and created Kotlin. Companies like Basecamp, Pinterest and Square were the majors to start using Kotlin but now that they have official support from google, you can expect them in many places.
How did they started
JetBrains didn’t make this product to sell, but to solve their own development issues. JetBrains deals with creating software for programmers and designed 70% of their products using java. They were sick of old fashioned ways used in java. Java implemented large codes that other language handles automatically. JetBrains wanted to implement less complicated language and they still had many applications written in java that should be maintained and wasn’t practical to rewrite all these applications. They started working on a language compatible with java in order to add new features to older applications without rewriting all codes.
Finally, they built a language that had a strong focus on compatibility with java and instead of keeping the project internal they open-sourced them. They achieved a lot of feedbacks and improvements from Java community for giving Kotlin away for free. Even before Google extended their support for Kotlin it was possible to create Android applications. The crucial fact was that if Google made any changes in the working environment for Android, then applications written in unsupported language will crash or not work the way that developers intended. All these uncertainties were cleared when Google made their announcement this year by supporting Kotlin.
The features of Kotlin we must know
To understand what makes Kotlin different from others, you should definitely get to know about the killer features that only Kotlin can provide as Google officially supports Kotlin in Android Studio 3.0 Canary 7 which is already available in the market.
To Android and Beyond
Although the attraction of Kotlin is that they can be mixed with Java, it has got a fascinating nature that companies with a huge amount of old java codes still use Kotlin for their applications. Kotlin can even be used to write the apps that can run on both servers as well as desktops like java. Speaking of which JetBrains has even released tools that can change Kotlin codes into codes that can be used to run in web browsers and even IOS. In upcoming years, all of us can expect to find ourselves using apps written in Kotlin.
If you are looking for highly efficient and perfect language to help you with coding, then Kotlin is your best choice and the IDE support from Intellij is superb. It’s worth noting that Kotlin got their loudest applause from Google when they officially announced Kotlin as a programming language for Android.