Getting Started in Kotlin

Getting Started in Kotlin

Kotlin is the official Android programming language and is statically typed. It is fully interoperable with Java, meaning that any Kotlin user can use the Java framework and mix commands from both Kotlin and Java without any limitations. In future tutorial/meetup, we will cover the basics of Kotlin and will look at how to set up the environment. We will also look at its flow structures, such as if { ... } else { ... } expressions and loops. In addition to this, we will look into object-oriented programming for Kotlin, and we will cover classes, interfaces, and objects. Functions will also be covered, along with parameters, constructors, and syntax.

The 3.0 version of Android Studio was released by Google, and it promoted Kotlin as a first class language for Android development. Kotlin is developed by JetBrains in the same way as the Intellij IDEA platform, which is the basis of Android Studio. This language was released in February 2016, it was in development for five years before it was released. It’s easy to gradually convert the code base of a project from Java to Kotlin, and a developer that is familiar with Java can learn Kotlin in a few weeks. Kotlin became popular before its release, because this language is full of features and is designed to interoperate with Java. The following diagram shows how Kotlin and Java code are compiled to the same bytecode:

kotlin-complie-flow

Basic syntax

Syntax is a significant part of the programming language, defining a set of rules that must be applied to combinations of symbols. Otherwise, a program can’t be compiled, and will be considered incorrect.

This section will describe the basic syntax of Kotlin, covering the following topics:

  • Defining packages
  • Defining variables
  • Defining functions
  • Defining classes

Defining packages

Packaging is a mechanism that allows us to group classes, interfaces, and sub-packages. In our case, a declaration of a package in a file may look as follows:

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