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Conference - Kotlin updates - our insights from Amsterdam’s Kotlin Conf (October)

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On October 3rd and 4th, the second edition of the KotlinConf conference was held in Amsterdam, mainly focusing on the latest Kotlin language news. This event reinforced our belief that Kotlin is a strong contender, not only to replace Java for Android development, but also to offer a modern and optimally functioning language for both front-end and back-end development.

 

Kotlin is a rather young language that has been exponentially adopted, especially by Android developers. It also had the biggest growth on Github last year. After 7 years of development, the language is now rather stable. Its version 1.3, whose release is imminent, still brings a lot of novelties:

  • Contracts: this solution allows a function to declare an invariant, this information is used by the compiler to improve code understanding, providing the developer with better tools. It should also limit errors.
  • Inline classes: they allow the cost-free encapsulation of a primitive value in a real class. Of course, it has some limitations.
  • Coroutines: this feature allows to write asynchronous code in an elegant and more readable way. Until now, it was in development and available for experimentation; its behavior could therefore evolve. This feature is now finished and will be fully integrated within the 1.3 version of the language.
  • Kotlin Multiplatform : one of Kotlin's major assets lies in its possible compilation on several platforms (JVM, Javascript and native). While being still experimental, this feature allows code sharing between Android and iOS applications, or a back-end and a website for example. The plugin on which this mechanism is based has been updated to be more coherent between the different platforms. SdkSearch is a very good example of a multiplatform project, linking an Android application and a Chrome Extension for searching the Android SDK documentation.

Watch here all the videos of the conference.