Dec 20, 2022 12:00:00 AM •
Author: Joris Portegies Zwart
As a software development company that does greenfield application development for our clients, choosing the right technologies for the job at hand is a crucial part of our skillset. As much as we love learning about, and fiddling with, new technologies, when it comes to professional software design we choose the tools and libraries that get the job done in the most simple, straightforward and efficient way.
That goes double for the choice of programming language, as no other choice has a bigger impact on the daily life of the software engineers. It is the language in which a program's logic is ultimately expressed. It is the language which is used to communicate a program's intent to the team members of today, and to the team members months and years from now. Dozens of engineers will need to read, understand, and change any piece of source code, and choosing the right language is crucial for communication.
So when we first started to use the Kotlin programming language on client projects five years ago, we didn't make that choice lightly. Looking back today to the past years, it is safe to say we made the right choice.
What was true then is still true today. Our engineers love Kotlin for its readability, its conciseness, and the way it combines object-oriented and functional programming concepts. The flawless interoperability with Java and the thousands of open source libraries we use means we could keep on leveraging two decades of experience with developing on the JVM.
It's not just Ximedes that is enthusiastic about Kotlin. Dutch banks like ING and Rabobank have all adopted Kotlin as part of their internal development effort. Since 2021, AWS has provided a native Kotlin SDK. Zalando uses it in their microservices platform.
Google made Kotlin the primary language for Android development in 2019, and is using it more and more for their server-side development as well. From a TechCrunch article:
"We know that developers are generally more satisfied with Kotlin than with Java. We know that they’re more productive, the quality of applications is higher and so getting more of those people to move more of their code over has been a focus for us. The interoperability of Kotlin […] with Java has made it that people can kind of progressively move code bases over and it would be great to get to the point down the road, where just everything is all Kotlin."
In the past five years, Ximedes has become the leading Kotlin development company in the Netherlands, and we are looking forward to continuing to work with this exciting language.