Kotlin 1.4, a major upgrade to the JetBrains-developed statically typed language initially built for the JVM, has reached its release candidate (RC) stage, with improved IDE support and a preview of Node.js API bindings.
The Kotlin 1.4 RC, published July 27, features improvements to IDE support for Gradle Kotlin DSL scripts (
*.gradle.kt files) including explicit loading of script configurations, either by clicking Load Gradle Changes or reimporting the Gradle project. Previously, when developers added a new plug-in to the
plugins block of
build.gradle.kts, the new script configuration was loaded automatically in the background, a process that often hindered IDE performance.
The Kotlin 1.4 RC also adds an action in the IntelliJ Idea 2020.1 IDE, called Load Script Configurations, which loads changes to Gradle script configurations without updating the whole project, thus taking less time. Also for
gradle.kts IDE support, better error reporting has been enabled by having the Gradle daemon return all information about errors and showing it in the Build tool window.
The Kotlin 1.4 RC’s preview of bindings for Node.js APIs,
kotlinx-nodejs, provides type-safe access to the Node API. Although it was possible to target Node.js previously, the new bindings unlock the full potential of the target.
To try Kotlin, developers can access the Kotlin Playground. Developers using IntelliJ Idea and Android Studio can update the Kotlin Plugin to version 1.4.0-RC by following these instructions. The command line compiler can be downloaded from GitHub.