Overview

This is an intensive conversion course for coders who are experienced in creating iOS mobile applications using Swift and wish to move to Android development with Kotlin. The course builds on the delegates existing experience and omits any material which would be redundant or self-evident. Instead the delivery focuses on those areas in the language and platform which will be novel and/or confusing.

By the end of the delivery the delegates will be able to build complete Android applications which conform to modern best practices and take advantage of popular frameworks like Dagger and RxJava. The course is workshop based, with delegates spending the majority of their time extending sample applications.

Outline

Core Concepts of the Java Platform

  • How Kotlin emerged from Java and Scala
  • The current JSE platform and toolset
  • Why Google broke Android away from Oracle
  • Java 8+ features not available on Android
  • How Kotlin modernises coding on Android
  • Creating Kotlin projects in IntelliJ Community
  • Creating mobile apps in Android Studio

Core Tooling in JSE and Android

  • Comparing XCode to Android Studio
  • Managing dependencies using Gradle
  • Pros and cons of Android emulators
  • How Intel HAXM improves emulation speeds
  • Configuring sample devices for testing
  • Developer features available on devices
  • Command-line interaction using ADB

Making the Most of Android Studio

  • Core functionality of Android Studio
  • Best practises for editing Kotlin codebases
  • Working with the Layout Inspector and Editor
  • Configuring the SDK and AVD Manager
  • Monitoring resource usage via the Profiler
  • Viewing and filtering logs via LogCat

Converting from Swift to Kotlin

  • Minor variations in the basic syntax
  • Mutability in Kotlin vs. Swift
  • Similarities in support for OO and FP
  • Limitations of class extensions in Kotlin
  • Differences in working with collections
  • Representing ranges in Swift and Kotlin
  • Optionals in Swift vs. null safety in Kotlin
  • Swift has tuples, Kotlin has Pair and Triple
  • Destructuring data classes and lists in Kotlin
  • Shorthand notation for parameters in closures
  • Comparing protocols in Swift to Kotlin interfaces
  • Taking advantage of reflection and delegates

Essentials of Android Applications

  • Android has no Storyboard equivalent
  • Understanding and editing the Manifest File
  • Introducing Android Activities and Fragments
  • Navigation between Activities and Fragments
  • How a device manages the lifecycle of an Activity
  • Designing an application around the MVVM pattern
  • Using databinding to push data into the model

Building Basic User Interfaces

  • Specifying a view hierarchy as XML
  • Reasons to avoid specifying hierarchies in code
  • Limits of the ‘drag and drop’ approach in the IDE
  • Using and combining the standard Android widgets
  • The support libraries and targeting legacy versions of Android
  • Special considerating when accepting textual input
  • Positioning widgets by creating and nesting layouts
  • Different options for attaching event handlers to views
  • Using binding adapters to bind views to data sources
  • Customizing widgets using styles and themes
  • Creating new widgets by extending existing ones

Enhancing the User Interface

  • Understanding the lifecycle of an Activity
  • How to preserve mutable state via callbacks and bundles
  • Starting one activity from another via intents
  • Processing intents using filtering and receivers
  • Creating and using files in a range of locations
  • Advantages of Kotlin Coroutines over AsyncTask
  • Using the JetBrains Kotlin Android Extensions
  • Using the Google Android Kotlin Extensions

Dependency Injection

  • Using the Dagger framework for DI
  • Understanding Compile Time Injection
  • Configuring dependencies via @Inject
  • Using @Provides for factory methods
  • Considerations when injecting into Activities

Reactive Coding in Android

  • Review of Rx and the RxJava framework
  • Using RxKotlin for syntactic sugar
  • Combining Rx and Kotlin Coroutines

Accessing RESTful Services

  • Introducing the Retrofit library
  • Creating service clients via annotations
  • Support for reactive streams in Retrofit
  • Marshalling to and from JSON and XML
  • Customizing object serialization

Persistence in Android

  • Supported databases on Android devices
  • Persisting data in SQLite using Room
  • Using annotations to specify Entity Types
  • Using annotations to specify Data Access Objects
  • Migrating databases between schema versions
  • Switching databases for testing

Security in Android

  • Managing key pairs via the Android Keystore
  • The security model and permissions available
  • Prompting the user to acquire permissions
  • Signing applications for distribution

Background Processing

  • Android services and their lifecycles
  • Using the Work Manager for scheduling jobs

Testing Android Applications

  • TDD with JUnit, Mockito and Hamcrest
  • User Interface testing with Espresso
  • Best practices for running tests in CI/CD
  • Options for mocking RESTful services

Deploying and Monitoring Applications

  • Platforms for distributing beta versions
  • Options for recording and reporting crashes
  • Techniques for monitoring the full system

Requirements

It is assumed that delegates will have several years experience in Swift / iOS and be familiar with the core concepts of object-oriented and functional programming.