Kotlin is a statically typed practical language that maintains correctness and performance. It mainly based on philosophies such as concise, safe, pragmatic and focused on interoperability with Java code.
Let’s look at detailed definition to understand what it means -
The language is said to be concise when its syntax clearly expresses the intent of the code. The simpler and more concise code, the faster you will understand the code. It saves your time from understanding the required surrounding code to specify how the intent of the code is accomplished.
For example, Function as value or parameter gives more power of extraction. In Kotlin, It can be expressed using the concise syntax for anonymous functions known as lambda expressions.
Lambda expressions, letting you pass around blocks of code with minimum boilerplate and lets you focus on task-specific code.
Another example is Data class, providing a concise syntax for creating immutable value objects.
A lot of the standard Java boilerplate, such as getters, setters, and the logic for assigning constructor parameters to fields, is implicit in Kotlin and doesn’t clutter your source code.
A more concise code improves your productivity.
Kotlin ensures the type safety of your applications. It tracks non-nullable values and forbids the operation which leads to NullPointerException.
Kotlin also enables safe multi-threading programming. The biggest sources of errors in a multi-threaded program are the modification of shared data from multiple threads without proper synchronization. Even with various available thread synchronization strategies, the program becomes more complex and adds boilerplate code to maintain it.
If you use immutable data structures and pure functions, you can be sure that unsafe modifications won’t happen and complicated schemes are not needed.
Kotlin is a practical language designed to solve real-world problems and address use cases encountered by developers.
It supports both object-oriented as well as functional paradigms and doesn’t enforce using any particular programming style or paradigm. It also focuses on IDE tooling and provides a great tool Java-to-Kotlin converter. It is very helpful for beginners. Also code without side effects is usually makes testing easier and function can be tested without lots of setting up a depending code.
Kotlin is interoperable with Java code and makes it effortless to call Kotlin code from java. It also benefits by enabling access to a rich set of existing Java libraries. On top of Java standard library, it provides extended functionality.
- Statically Typed: A type of every expression in a program is known at compile time.
- Type Inference: The ability of the compiler to determine types from context.
- Nullable Types: To write more reliable programs by detecting possible null pointer exceptions at compile time.
- Supports Functional Types: First class functions, lambda expressions.
- Immutability: data classes.
The most common areas to use Kotlin are :
- Building server-side applications (typically, backends of web applications).
- Building mobile applications that run on Android devices.
I hope, you have got a basic idea about Kotlin.