Java-alternative Kotlin now available as open source
JetBrains' alternative language for the Java platform, Kotlin – which the company has been developing since 2010 and revealed in July 2011 – has now been released as open source under an Apache 2 licence. The released tools include the Kotlin compiler, "Kompiler", a set of enhancements to standard Java libraries such as convenience utilities for JDK collections, build tools (for Ant, Maven and Gradle), and an IntelliJ IDEA plugin so it works with JetBrains' own IDE.
The developers also say they aimed to make it "way simpler than the most mature competitor – Scala". The developers have published comparisons with Java and with Scala to further explain their language's design. A Kotlin web demo allows developers to experiment with the language from their browser.
The Kotlin name refers to a Russian island west of Saint Petersberg; JetBrains has a main development office in the city.