Book Image

Kotlin Quick Start Guide

By : Marko Devcic
Book Image

Kotlin Quick Start Guide

By: Marko Devcic

Overview of this book

Kotlin is a general purpose, object-oriented language that primarily targets the JVM and Android. Intended as a better alternative to Java, its main goals are high interoperability with Java and increased developer productivity. Kotlin is still a new language and this book will help you to learn the core Kotlin features and get you ready for developing applications with Kotlin. This book covers Kotlin features in detail and explains them with practical code examples.You will learn how to set up the environment and take your frst steps with Kotlin and its syntax. We will cover the basics of the language, including functions, variables, and basic data types. With the basics covered, the next chapters show how functions are first-class citizens in Kotlin and deal with the object-oriented side of Kotlin. You will move on to more advanced features of Kotlin. You will explore Kotlin's Standard Library and learn how to work with the Collections API. The book finishes by putting Kotlin in to practice, showing how to build a desktop app. By the end of this book, you will be confident enough to use Kotlin for your next project.
Table of Contents (15 chapters)
Title Page
Copyright and Credits
Packt Upsell

Type inference

Declaring types in Kotlin is optional. This is a feature of a Kotlin compiler called Type inference. The compiler can infer the type from the context of the usage. Kotlin is a strongly and statically typed language, so omitting types doesn’t mean that you lose type safety. 

Here’s an example of type inference:

val str = "Kotlin"

str variable is of type String and the compiler knows this from the String literal that is initializing the variable. That’s why, if you try to assign a different type to this variable, you'll get a compiler error, as can be seen in the following:

var str = "Kotlin"
str = 1 // compiler error

Type inference doesn’t just work on local variables, but also on functions with expression bodies, generic types, closures and lambdas. You’ll see more type inference in practice in following chapters.