Programming languages are a fundamental part of the ever-growing software/IT industry, and quite often a time, it becomes a bit difficult for developers to choose between various programming languages, and if you are one of them who’s facing a dilemma while choosing between Java and Python, Give the article a read and clear all of your lingering doubts.
There has been an active debate in the developer’s community regarding which one of these languages are superior, while java is used by significant organisations such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and more; Python has constantly been evolving and has spread its root onto various fields of AI, ML, Data-analytics and is widely being adopted by companies such as Netflix, Apple, Google and more into their products.
So Before we move on to the comparison, Let’s look into a brief history of these languages.
Python is a high-level, general-purpose language that emphasises code readability and its object-oriented approach helps programmers develop easy-to-read code for both small and large scale products.
With the help of its in-built data structures and free resource libraries, It’s an ideal language that reduces the cost of program maintenance and is suitable for people that are not willing to invest too much into the project.
Java is a high-level, class-based programming language that is similar to C++ but has a program-oriented approach. First designed by James Gosling 26 years ago, Java makes it a write-once and run-anywhere language that makes it an ideal choice for organizations that aim to build cross-platform applications without any glitches.
With insights into Java and Python, let’s look into some technical aspects to differentiate them better.
Java is used for creating web applications a lot, and Java makes it possible to develop cross-platform applications. It also allows for asynchronous programming. While being popular among Senior developers, it’s a bit hard to implement when it comes to Machine learning, data analytics, and various other fields; supporting a decent NLPM( Natural Language Processing Community), Java is a language that is widely accepted as the first choice of many developers.
On the other hand, Python is quite famous among junior developers or young programmers due to its easy-to-code specialty. It’s widely popular in machine learning as big libraries such as “TensorFlow” and “Pytorch” are both written in python; apart from this, python has excellent data visualization and data processing capabilities as Pandas, Matplotlib, Dask, and more.
There’s a great difference when it comes to how the programs are executed and compiled in Java and python.
For instance, in Java, the program is first compiled before running. As Java does not have a common line interpreter, one needs to write a full program to execute a task, Forex: writing a simple program to print “Hello World” has some major syntax differences.
Being strict with rules, one needs to type all variables and follow all the indentation and closing braces, and If there is any error or anomaly in code, It won’t execute.
As shown in the code above, to write a simple print program, one needs to define both class and the main method in java, which tells it where the program starts, So compiling the program makes it a bit tedious and time-consuming while testing for simple programs.
Since Python is a dynamic language, the inputs can be entered during the runtime, and also, it does not follow indentation or enclosing braces rules which makes it beginner-friendly.
As seen in the above program, it takes just a single line of code when it comes to executing the same program, which makes python popular among young developers. Though python does have its main method, it’s not necessarily used that often as there is often a workaround.
Both the languages are run by compiling the bytecode in VM( virtual machines). Though seemingly simpler performance, In reality, there is a seemingly major difference in performances of both of these languages.
The compilation is much faster and easier in Java as it follows a static-typing syntax which is less prone to errors as compared to Python which follows a dynamic-typing syntax.
Since Python is compiled during run-time, a single error can put the whole program on hold, and it is not as verbose to work with every platform whereas, on the other hand, Java is faster, but the programs are usually large, which makes it difficult to understand.
Python follows a top-down approach until and unless the start of the program is specified, moreover, one can also create and define classes just like in Java.
For instance, classes in Python are easier to read and code as compared to Java as one can be quite liberal while referencing variable names. In contrast, even a simple program becomes complex to read as Java has strict rules for referencing variables in its classes, and the best practices state the use of special functions such as “getters” and “Setters” to reference the variable, which makes it a bit hard for the young developers to understand.
A notable difference between these two programming languages is that the main method in Java is very crucial as it is used to instantiate the class and retrieve its value which is quite opposite when compared to Python.
Apart from Class methods, there are also some notable differences in how different functionalities work.
For Ex: In Python, The “Dictionaries” contents are displayed automatically, whereas Hashmap in Java requires developers to properly use methods and functions such as keyset() and elements() to display the values.
After comparing Java and python based on, various technical aspects, it’s quite clear that each of the languages has its specialty. Both of them have their advantages over others. Java may be popular, but Python is now being used in every field, Java may be faster, but it’s easier to code lengthy programs in python.
At the end of the day, it’s all on the developers and the programs they need to create, so if you are looking to create something and most of its criteria fits the above-given descriptions, you can proceed towards using the language for your program.
One should not limit oneself to only one of these languages, and it will prove to be quite beneficial to learn both of them in the long run.