How to Learn Kotlin Online: A Beginner’s Guide to Kotlin Programming

Kotlin for Beginners

Kotlin is a relatively new statistically-oriented programming that was released by Google for Android app development back in 2016. Kotlin was developed by JetBrains and is powered by JVM. It can also be compiled into JVM bytecode and JavaScript for Android development. You can learn Kotlin for Android development online and master how to build applications on Java using this programming language. This is because Kotlin is one hundred percent interoperable with Java and Android and compatible with Java. This makes it easy to convert Java code to Kotlin code and vice versa.  And this also means that you can access and use Java frameworks and libraries while developing your apps with Kotlin. Additionally, you can install Kotlin plugin in the Android Studio and integrate it with Gradle.

Kotlin applications: What is Kotlin used for?

Kotlin, as already indicated, is a general-purpose programming language. This means that Kotlin can be applied in a range of spheres. Kotlin is commonly used for cross-platform mobile, Android, JavaScript, and server-sided development. Here are some of the aspects that Kotlin is great at:

Cross-platform mobile development

One of the reasons why developers and organizations take to Kotlin for their mobile development is its ability to create cross-platform applications. The main philosophy behind Kotlin is that you do not need to migrate the entire application to a specific operating system.

Developers of Kotlin programming language encourages developers to build applications step-by-step, starting with a single feature or module, testing, and only proceeding to the next step after completing what they are presently working on.

Kotlin splits business logic and user interface, enabling a developer to create a fully native UI and app appearance. And, Kotlin allows developers to use already written codes and modify them for iOS. This results in fewer codes, fewer bugs, and substantially lower cost of app creation. This way, there is no need for two separate Android and iOS development teams. This makes Kotlin one of the most cost and time-efficient programming languages.

Android Development

Up until its introduction in 2016, all Android applications were written using Java. Kotlin brought in a new approach to building Android applications. Developers no longer have to use Java.

One of the major advantages of developing Android apps using Kotlin is its compatibility with JDK 6, which means that you can develop solutions for older devices. Other reasons why Android app developers are turning to Kotlin include interoperability, high performance, fast compilation, and a tiny runtime library.

Additionally, you can use Kotlin programming language alongside Java. This explains why you do not have to rebuild the entire project with Kotlin. You can simply test the ground by writing a couple of features in Kotlin and seeing how it goes.

JavaScript Development

As already indicated, Kotlin can run on a virtual machine. This means that you can easily write your Kotlin code and use its transpilers to modify it to another programming language. The virtual machine, however, does not support all environments, included browsers and embedded systems. This explains why you need JavaScript to an application in the browser.

You can simply compile your Kotlin code to JavaScript if you do not wish to write code in two separate programming languages. This way, you can use the code for both client as well as server web developments.

You might be wondering why you have to invest time compiling Kotlin code, even though JavaScript is extensively used. Simply put, JavaScript is not a great choice if you want to develop large applications. Additionally, it is possible to create a web service as well as a desktop application targeting Java Virtual Machine corresponding web client targeting JavaScript.

Server-Sided Development

Kotlin does more than just developing Android applications. According to JetBrains, Kotlin can be used for server-sided developments as well. And several organizations, including Google, Gradle, and Hexagon are already using this approach.

Why Android Developers prefer Kotlin to Java

Thanks to advances in the programming world, programming languages quickly become obsolete and unable to cope with modern languages. Kotlin’s amazing features cuts down the amount of boilerplate code making it one of the safest programming languages out there. Here are five reasons why Android developers are opting for Kotlin over Java:

Mature language and environment

Unlike other programming languages like Swift, Kotlin has gone through multiple alpha and beta stages before the final 1.0 release. This gives it a very stable environment, with everything working just as you would expect. Its IDE plugin works smoothly, allowing you to access tons of features that you love and use in Java.

It makes Android development projects a lot easier

Simplicity meets power when it comes to Kotlin. This opens a brand new world of possibilities for developers who are used to Java. In all fairness, Kotlin is the only viable alternative to Java for developing amazing Android applications. Other alternatives like Scala are incredibly heavy, and compilation times and tools cannot be compared. Kotlin’s compilation time, on the other hand, is quite similar to Java’s. Additionally, the library required for writing Kotlin apps is quite small, so it does not increase your method count that much.

It is easily integrated with Android Studio

This may sound benign, but everything working perfectly fine from the onset is a wonderful thing. As a developer, you can set up your Kotlin project in well under 10 minutes without any hassle, even if you are new to this programming language.

All you need to do with Android 2.3 is install a plugin, and in 3.0 the entire process is seamlessly integrated. From here, everything works just as if you were building your app with Java: you can run from the IDE, debug without trouble, use instant run, perform refactors — pretty much everything you can imagine.

Big organizations are already using it

From Basecamp to Pinterest, Kotlin is making a name as the go-to Android app programming language. Trello’s production code is also built using Kotlin. You can see the list of organizations that have built their applications using Kotlin.

Kotlin is a multi-platform programming language

Of course, you are not learning Kotlin online just to create Android applications. Kotlin was originally created with JVM in mind, thus it can virtually be used on any device that runs the JVM. In Kotlin 1.1, you can also do front-end development using Kotlin. And it does not stop here either. Thanks to Gradle support, you can also write your Gradle files. Thanks to Kotlin Native, the future is basically open to any platform.

Kotlin is quite easy to learn

One of the greatest advantages of Kotlin is that any Java developer can read and understand most of the code without having to write a line of Kotlin. This is because the folks at Jetbrains wanted to make the transition from Java as seamless as possible. Thanks to Kotlin’s simplicity and the help of the IDE and compiler, you can master and handle the language’s basics real fast.

Learn Kotlin online free: best online Kotlin courses

Ready to learn Kotlin online free? Here are some of the best online courses for your consideration:

Kotlin for Java Developers

Developed by Andrey Breslav, Kotlin Project Lead and its initial designer, and Svetlana Isakova, currently JetBrains Developer Advocate in charge of teaching Kotlin, this online Kotlin course offers many important instincts for beginners.

Kotlin for Android Developers Nanodegree

This Udacity’s Nanodegree program has been developed in collaboration with Google with the goal of preparing you to become a professional Android developer. You will learn how to use the Android development platform’s best practices, Android Jetpack, Android Studio, and Kotlin to build your own applications for the Android Store.

Kotlin Bootcamp for Programmers

Developed by Aleks Haeeky, Asser Samak, and Sean McQuillan, this is a really great course for beginners to Kotlin development. Developed by Kotlin experts at Google, you will learn the essentials of the Kotlin programming language from the best experts in the industry.

Kotlin for Android Developers — FREE Kotlin Course!

This comprehensive online Kotlin course was developed by Jose Nieto Rubio and Aaron Sarazan. It is recommended for learners who are comfortable with Android. You will learn how to migrate an Adroid app made in Java to Kotlin. This free fast-paced introduction to Kotlin course is ideal for experienced Java programmers.

How to learn Kotlin for Beginners: Conclusion

There is no doubt that Kotlin is a very friendly programming language that makes developers think different. If you want to learn Kotlin online and master this amazing programming language, be sure to explore the online Kotlin courses mentioned in this post. These courses have been prepared by industry experts in collaboration with reputable organizations and are guaranteed to master this language and become an expert Kotlin developer.

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