In the world of programming, Python and Java have long been two of the most popular languages. Both have their strengths and are suited to different types of tasks, but recent trends and research suggest that Python may be gaining an edge.
Based on the latest data from the TIOBE Index for May 2023, Python has now surpassed Java to become the second most popular language on GitHub, a major platform for code sharing and collaboration. This milestone is significant as it reflects the preferences of a large and diverse community of developers.
Python’s rise in popularity can be attributed to several factors. Its simple, readable syntax makes it a great language for beginners, while its powerful libraries and frameworks make it versatile enough for a wide range of tasks, from web development to data analysis and machine learning. In fact, Python’s usage in the field of data science and machine learning has seen a surge, with a growth rate of 27% in the past year.
However, Java still holds a strong position in the industry. Despite being dethroned by Python on GitHub, Java remains the most popular language in the enterprise application development sphere. It is widely used in building scalable, robust, and secure enterprise-level applications.
For learners who are contemplating which language to choose first, understanding the difference between Python and Java becomes essential. Python is often recommended for beginners due to its simplicity, while Java is a good choice for those interested in application development. However, the choice ultimately depends on one’s career goals and interests.
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In terms of recent news on Python vs Java in 2024:
- Python has been gaining popularity in the fields of data science and machine learning due to its simplicity and the availability of relevant libraries (source: TechRepublic).
- Java remains a popular choice for enterprise-level applications and has been used in the development of several popular websites and applications (source: Oracle Blog).
Difference Between Python and Java
|Type||General-purpose. Runs everywhere.||High level. Code readability and short syntax.|
|Compilation||Easily complies on any platform.||Easily complies with the Linux platform.|
|Type of Programming Language||Compiled programming language.||Interpreted and object-oriented programming language.|
|Programming Paradigm Support||Supports key functional programming concepts.||Supports functional, imperative, and procedural programming paradigms.|
|Code Readability||Requires efforts for better code readability.||Emphasizes more on code-readability, keeps the code base clean, readable & concise.|
|Standard Library||It has core, integration, and user interface libraries.||Has a comprehensive standard library with numerous Python packages.|
|Performance & Speed||Java code execution is done through just-in-time (JIT) compilation, making software applications run faster by supporting concurrency.||The execution speed of Python applications is accelerated through the implementation of programming languages.|
|Mobile App Development||Offers robust frameworks and development tools for mobile app development.||Doesn’t allow building native mobile apps for any mobile platform.|
|Machine Learning & Data Science||Used for network security, cyber-attack prevention, and fraud detection projects.||Widely used for scientific computing, big data, and artificial intelligence projects, and is the most preferred programming language for machine learning and data science.|
|Learning Curve||Easy to write, compile, debug, and learn. It often requires writing additional code for beginners to express concepts.||Easier to learn because of simple and expressive syntax rules.|
Advantages of Learning Java in 2024
Here are the top reasons why you should consider learning the Java programming language in 2024:
- Continued Dominance in Enterprise Sector: According to the annual developer survey by Stack Overflow, Java remains one of the most popular programming languages in the enterprise sector, with 45% of professional developers using Java in their work. This means that learning Java can open up a wide range of job opportunities in various industries.
- Upcoming Features in Java 18: As reported by InfoWorld, Java 18 is set to introduce several new features, including pattern matching for switch expressions and statements, a new HTTP client API, and improvements to the Java memory model. Learning Java now would allow you to take advantage of these features as soon as they’re released.
- Java for Cloud-Native Applications: Oracle has announced a new Java framework called Helidon, designed specifically for developing cloud-native applications. With the rise of cloud computing, learning Java can provide you with the skills needed to develop modern, cloud-based applications.
- Java Performance: DZone’s comprehensive guide to Java performance highlights the efficiency of Java applications. By learning Java, you can develop high-performance applications that can handle large amounts of data and complex computations.
- Java Security: Security Boulevard’s article on Java security best practices emphasizes the importance of secure coding practices in Java. Learning Java can help you understand and implement these practices, making your applications more secure.
- Java in Education: EdTech Magazine reports that many schools choose Java as the first programming language to teach students. This suggests that Java is considered a fundamental language that provides a strong foundation for learning other programming languages.
Also Read – Top Java Interview Questions & Answers
Latest Online Java Courses
- Coursera has launched a new course titled “Java Programming and Software Engineering Fundamentals Specialization” by Duke University. This course is designed for beginners and covers the basics of Java programming and software engineering.
- Udemy is offering a course called “Java Programming Masterclass for Software Developers” which is updated for Java 17. This course is highly rated and covers everything from the basics to advanced topics.
- edX has a course from the University of Carlos III de Madrid called “Learn to Program in Java”. This course is part of a professional certificate in coding and programming.
- Codecademy has a comprehensive Java course that includes interactive coding exercises and projects.
Advantages of Learning Python in 2024
The following are some of the research based reasons why you should learning the Python programming language in 2024:
- Python’s Role in AI and Machine Learning: Python is a leading language in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. As reported by MarkTechPost, Google’s new AI report shows how Python is used in developing large language models. Learning Python can provide you with the skills needed to contribute to this rapidly evolving field.
- Python in Education: According to The Wall Street Journal, Python is being used to teach fifth-graders to outsmart AI. This suggests that Python is considered a fundamental language that provides a strong foundation for learning other programming languages and concepts, including AI.
- Python’s Simplicity and Versatility: Python’s simple, readable syntax makes it a great language for beginners. At the same time, its powerful libraries and frameworks make it versatile enough for a wide range of tasks, from web development to data analysis and machine learning.
- Python’s Popularity: Python has overtaken Java to become the second most popular language on GitHub, a major platform for code sharing and collaboration. This reflects the preferences of a large and diverse community of developers, suggesting that Python skills are in high demand.
- Python and Big Data: As reported by People’s Daily Online, Python is being used in the field of big data, a rapidly growing sector that involves analyzing large datasets to uncover patterns, trends, and insights. Learning Python can provide you with the skills needed to work in this field.
Latest Online Python Courses
- Coursera: “Python for Everybody” by the University of Michigan. This course aims to teach everyone the basics of programming computers using Python. It covers the basics of how one constructs a program from a series of simple instructions in Python.
- Udemy: “Complete Python Bootcamp: Go from zero to hero in Python 3”. This course is a comprehensive guide to Python, where you’ll learn by building real-world applications.
- edX: “Introduction to Python Programming” by Georgia Tech. This course is part of a professional certificate in coding and programming.
- Codecademy: “Learn Python 3”. This course includes interactive coding exercises and projects.
- DataCamp: “Introduction to Python for Data Science”. This course is specifically designed for data science applications.
Python Vs Java – Key Differences
Based on the research paper “A Comparative Study of Programming Languages in Rosetta Code I: Python vs Java” (DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.2595006), here are some key points of comparison between Python and Java:
- Code Length: Python code tends to be shorter than Java code. For instance, in the research paper “A Comparative Study of Programming Languages in Rosetta Code I: Python vs Java”, it was found that Python implementations were 3.1 times shorter than Java implementations on average. This is due to Python’s high-level data types and its use of indentation for block delimiters which makes it more concise.
- Execution Time: Java programs generally run faster than Python programs. However, the exact speed difference can vary greatly depending on the specific task.
- Memory Usage: Python uses more memory than Java. This is due to Python’s dynamic typing which requires more memory to store data.
- Readability: Python is often considered more readable than Java. This is due to Python’s clear and concise syntax. However, readability can be subjective and depends on the programmer’s familiarity with the language.
- Community and Libraries: Both Python and Java have large communities and extensive libraries, but they excel in different areas. Python is often used in data analysis, machine learning, and web development, while Java is commonly used in enterprise-level applications. (Source: TechRepublic, Oracle Blog)
- Learning Curve: Python is generally considered easier to learn for beginners due to its simplicity, while Java is more complex but provides a deeper understanding of how programming works.
- Performance: Java has a higher performance than Python due to its static typing and optimization by the Java Virtual Machine (JVM).
- Portability: Both languages are portable, but Java is considered more portable due to the JVM which allows Java programs to run on any device that has a JVM.
- Concurrency: Java has built-in thread capabilities and is better suited for applications that require high concurrency.
- Use Cases: Python is often used for scripting, data analysis, and rapid application development, while Java is used for building large-scale enterprise applications, mobile applications, and desktop applications. (Source: TechRepublic, Oracle Blog)
Below are the differences between the two most popular programming languages – Python and Java.
Python vs Java – Which is the Best Language to Learn?
Based on the latest data and trends, Python has a slight edge over Java in 2024. Here are the reasons:
- Popularity and Growth: According to the TIOBE Index for May 2023, Python is ranked 2nd while Java is ranked 3rd. This indicates that Python is currently more popular among developers. Furthermore, Python has seen a steady growth in popularity over the past few years, while Java has seen a slight decline.
- Ease of Learning and Use: Python is often praised for its simplicity and readability, which makes it a great language for beginners. Its syntax is clean and easy to understand, which reduces the cost of program maintenance. Java, on the other hand, is more verbose and complex, which can make it more difficult for beginners to grasp.
- Versatility: Python is a highly versatile language that is used in a wide range of applications, from web development to data analysis, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and scientific computing. Java is also versatile and widely used for building enterprise-scale applications, but Python’s use in rapidly growing fields like data science and AI gives it an edge.
- Job Market: According to Indeed’s job postings in 2023, there are more job opportunities for Python developers compared to Java developers. This could be due to the increasing demand for Python in emerging fields like data science and AI.
- Community and Support: Both Python and Java have large, active communities and extensive libraries and frameworks, which can be a significant advantage for developers. However, Python’s community has been growing at a faster rate, which means more support and resources for Python developers.
Check out the Top 6 Online Python Compiler Picks
What is Python used for?
Python is a popular programming language that is used for developing websites and software, automating tasks, and data analysis. This general-purpose language is also used in machine learning, data visualization, game development, and programming applications. The language is also used in the finance domain for conducting quantitative and qualitative analysis.
What is Java used for?
Java is a commonly used programming language that is popular for its scalability, functionality, cross-platform behavior, and security. It is widely used for developing a variety of applications such as mobile applications, desktop applications, web-based applications, gaming applications, IoT applications, and cloud-based applications.
Which companies use Java?
Java is used in a range of computing platforms including mobile phones, embedded devices, enterprise servers, and supercomputers. Some of the top companies that use Java include Google, Instagram, Netflix, Airbnb, Pinterest, and Uber.
Which language is more suitable for web development: Python or Java?
Both Python and Java are capable of web development, but they have different frameworks and libraries that cater to different needs. Python has popular web frameworks like Django and Flask, which provide high-level abstractions and rapid development for web applications. Java has frameworks like Spring and JavaServer Faces (JSF), which offer enterprise-level features and scalability for large-scale web applications. The choice between Python and Java for web development depends on the specific requirements of the project, the existing infrastructure, and the development team's expertise.
Which language is better for data science: Python or Java?
Python is widely regarded as the language of choice for data science and machine learning due to its extensive libraries and frameworks like NumPy, Pandas, and scikit-learn. Java also has libraries and tools for data science, such as Apache Mahout and Weka, but the ecosystem is not as extensive as Python's. Python's simplicity and expressiveness make it easier to prototype and experiment with data science algorithms, while Java's focus on performance and scalability makes it suitable for big data processing and distributed computing.
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