How does Kotlin compare to something like Groovy? Seems to be the same kind of thing?
Better in some ways, worse in others.
My understanding of Groovy is that it's closer to a scripting language, which can make it very good for certain tasks. However, from experience it can be more difficult to get Interop between Groovy and Java code - especially in the direction of Java code calling Groovy code. Kotlin emphasis on Interop is quite a big deal, and they do a lot to make calling either direction as painless as possible.
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