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Basic Syntax

Defining packages

Package specification should be at the top of the source file:

package my.demo

import java.util.*

// ...

It is not required to match directories and packages: source files can be placed arbitrarily in the file system.

See Packages.

Defining functions

Function having two Int parameters with Int return type:

fun sum(a: Int, b: Int): Int {
  return a + b
}

Function with an expression body and inferred return type:

fun sum(a: Int, b: Int) = a + b

Function returning no meaningful value:

fun printSum(a: Int, b: Int): Unit {
  print(a + b)
}

Unit return type can be omitted:

fun printSum(a: Int, b: Int) {
  print(a + b)
}

See Functions.

Defining local variables

Assign-once (read-only) local variable:

val a: Int = 1
val b = 1   // `Int` type is inferred
val c: Int  // Type required when no initializer is provided
c = 1       // definite assignment

Mutable variable:

var x = 5 // `Int` type is inferred
x += 1

See also Properties And Fields.

Comments

Just like Java and JavaScript, Kotlin supports end-of-line and block comments.

// This is an end-of-line comment

/* This is a block comment
   on multiple lines. */

Unlike Java, block comments in Kotlin can be nested.

See Documenting Kotlin Code for information on the documentation comment syntax.

Using string templates

fun main(args: Array<String>) {
  if (args.size == 0) return

  print("First argument: ${args[0]}")
}

See String templates.

Using conditional expressions

fun max(a: Int, b: Int): Int {
  if (a > b)
    return a
  else
    return b
}

Using if as an expression:

fun max(a: Int, b: Int) = if (a > b) a else b

See if-expressions.

Using nullable values and checking for null

A reference must be explicitly marked as nullable when null value is possible.

Return null if str does not hold an integer:

fun parseInt(str: String): Int? {
  // ...
}

Use a function returning nullable value:

fun main(args: Array<String>) {
  if (args.size < 2) {
    print("Two integers expected")
    return
  }

  val x = parseInt(args[0])
  val y = parseInt(args[1])

  // Using `x * y` yields error because they may hold nulls.
  if (x != null && y != null) {
    // x and y are automatically cast to non-nullable after null check
    print(x * y)
  }
}

or

  // ...
  if (x == null) {
    print("Wrong number format in '${args[0]}'")
    return
  }
  if (y == null) {
    print("Wrong number format in '${args[1]}'")
    return
  }

  // x and y are automatically cast to non-nullable after null check
  print(x * y)

See Null-safety.

Using type checks and automatic casts

The is operator checks if an expression is an instance of a type. If an immutable local variable or property is checked for a specific type, there’s no need to cast it explicitly:

fun getStringLength(obj: Any): Int? {
  if (obj is String) {
    // `obj` is automatically cast to `String` in this branch
    return obj.length
  }

  // `obj` is still of type `Any` outside of the type-checked branch
  return null
}

or

fun getStringLength(obj: Any): Int? {
  if (obj !is String)
    return null

  // `obj` is automatically cast to `String` in this branch
  return obj.length
}

or even

fun getStringLength(obj: Any): Int? {
  // `obj` is automatically cast to `String` on the right-hand side of `&&`
  if (obj is String && obj.length > 0)
    return obj.length

  return null
}

See Classes and Type casts.

Using a for loop

fun main(args: Array<String>) {
  for (arg in args)
    print(arg)
}

or

for (i in args.indices)
  print(args[i])

See for loop.

Using a while loop

fun main(args: Array<String>) {
  var i = 0
  while (i < args.size)
    print(args[i++])
}

See while loop.

Using when expression

fun cases(obj: Any) {
  when (obj) {
    1          -> print("One")
    "Hello"    -> print("Greeting")
    is Long    -> print("Long")
    !is String -> print("Not a string")
    else       -> print("Unknown")
  }
}

See when expression.

Using ranges

Check if a number is within a range using in operator:

if (x in 1..y-1)
  print("OK")

Check if a number is out of range:

if (x !in 0..array.lastIndex)
  print("Out")

Iterating over a range:

for (x in 1..5)
  print(x)

See Ranges.

Using collections

Iterating over a collection:

for (name in names)
  println(name)

Checking if a collection contains an object using in operator:

if (text in names) // names.contains(text) is called
  print("Yes")

Using lambda expressions to filter and map collections:

names
    .filter { it.startsWith("A") }
    .sortedBy { it }
    .map { it.toUpperCase() }
    .forEach { print(it) }

See Higher-order functions and Lambdas.