· 5 min read Posted by Touchlab

KotlinConf '23 Recap

Catchy thing

The first in-person KotlinConf since 2019 has come and gone! It’s always an exciting time, and this year was more exciting than normal – we had a couple of big reveals! Additionally, we had a workshop and a few developer talks. In case you weren’t able to be there, let’s give you the rundown, shall we?

Joining The Kotlin Foundation

During the keynote address at the opening of KotlinConf, Touchlab was officially announced as one of the first members to ever join the Kotlin Foundation. As new silver members of the Kotlin Foundation, Touchlab,  Gradle, Inc. and Shopify join founding members JetBrains and Google. We are incredibly excited to help drive the Kotlin ecosystem forward as members of the foundation. For more information, you can check out our blog post about it, or read the Kotlin Foundation’s official announcement.

Unveiling SKIE:

While we were thrilled to be part of such an important announcement during the keynote, the closing panel of the conference also offered a generous endorsement of our new product, SKIE. Touchlab has been hard at work on SKIE, our Swift-Kotlin Interface Enhancer. We had the opportunity to demo it for many attendees at KotlinConf and we’re overwhelmed by the positive reception.

The iOS developer experience has always been a focus for Touchlab. We know that iOS developer buy-in is critical for widespread KMP adoption. As Apple moves towards a Swift-first future for their entire platform, creating a Swift-friendly face for Kotlin code is critical. Most successful teams either avoid ‘problematic’ code or write wrappers to ‘translate’ Kotlin for a Swift audience.

Some of the key features we know iOS developers will appreciate include:

  • Flow support: Kotlin flows are automatically and transparently converted to Swift AsyncSequences.
  • Suspend Interop: Kotlin suspend functions are converted to Swift’s native async functions
  • Sealed class wrapped as an enum: Sealed classes are unchanged, but an associated enum is generated, as well as a wrapper function to use in switch statements.

In addition to these features, the SKIE plugin does much more. If you want to see it for yourself, you can learn more about the tech here, as well as sign up for a demo.

SKIE makes the iOS side of multiplatform feel more “Swift-y” – learn more and book your demo today!

Book Your Demo

Touchlab Pro:

SKIE isn’t the only offering we’ve been working on. It’s one part of a whole suite of tools and self-study materials designed to increase efficiency among mobile  teams adopting KMP. There are 4 main components, of which SKIE is one. The other three are:

  1. Priority support for Touchlab’s OSS offerings – skip the Slack queue and get guaranteed answers when you run across an issue using tools like Xcode-Kotlin plugin, KMMBridge, or Kermit. You’ll have direct access to Touchlab’s developers to help you solve sticky situations.
  2. Self-Study Materials – upskill yourself and your team on your own timetable. Remove information bottlenecks with guided courses on Android for iOS developers, iOS for Android developers, and a thorough grounding on the KMP your team needs to be effective and efficient quickly.
  3. Knowledge Bank –  Touchlab talks to, interviews, and/or works with many of the teams that have Kotlin Multiplatform in production successfully. Now you and your team can access Touchlab’s carefully curated and constantly updated best practices from across the realm of KMP. Save time by leveraging our experience rather than Googling and hoping.

KotlinConf Developer Workshop and Talks:

In addition to being able to reveal that we’re now members of the Kotlin Foundation and unveiling new offerings to the KMP community, members of our dev team gave presentations and hosted a workshop. 

Kotlin Multiplatform Mobile in Production | Kevin Galligan, Tadeas Kriz, Russell Wolf:

Founding Partner Kevin Galligan and senior developers Russell Wolf and Tadeas Kriz gave an in-depth workshop on the tricky part of moving from learning KMP through projects like KaMP Kit to actually putting Kotlin into production. They were able to go over practical information with concrete examples of how to address concerns to a nearly sold-out crowd.

5 Years of Multiplatform Settings | Russell Wolf:

As the author of one of the first Kotlin Multiplatform libraries, Russell has had a lot of experience creating and maintaining libraries. He shared what he’s learned in one of KotlinConf’s lightning rounds.

Watch Russell’s talk here!

Meta-programming with KSP and Kotlin compiler Plugins | Tadeas Kriz

Tadeas went in-depth on how to enhance the Kotlin compilation process at KotlinConf. During his presentation, he recapped JVM meta-programming, gave overviews of KSP and Compiler plugins, and went over how to choose which to use.

Watch Tadeas’s talk here!

Kotlin Multiplatform Mobile for Teams | Kevin Galligan:

One of the most important things Touchlab has learned in its time helping teams get started with KMP is that no two teams will approach it the same way. Touchlab has codified the 4 most common models that teams follow to implement Kotlin Multiplatform. Kevin reviewed them and discussed some of the pros and cons.  He also discussed the future of Kotlin and product development, the changing technology ecosystem, and how Kotlin will be an excellent platform, for mobile and beyond. You can check out his slide deck here.

Watch Kevin’s talk here!