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Java vs Python, which one should you use?

Java or Python, it’s always a choice that confuses many (myself included). So, let’s explore the differences between the two most prominently used languages!



Image Source: https://hackr.io/blog/python-vs-java

Differences

Java created in 1995, as a high-level, object-oriented, class-based programming language, adheres to abstraction and encapsulation. It was originally designed for handheld devices but due to the rapidly increasing popularity of the internet, it was modified to be used on the world wide web.

On the other hand, Python was created in 1989. Like Java it is also object-oriented and a high-level language, incorporating many English words in its syntax and thus being more readable as opposed to other programming languages. It is usually used for Artificial Intelligence, machine learning, and web development. Furthermore, Python’s libraries allow a programmer to get started quickly; rarely will users need to start from scratch.

Java and Python differ from each other in speed, syntax, and practical agility. First, regarding speed, Java is a statically typed language, meaning that the syntax is checked at compile-time, hence the execution speed is faster. Opposingly, Python is a dynamically typed language, hence the syntax is checked at the time of execution. This makes the execution speed slower if compared to Java. Then, with regard to syntax, Python has a clear advantage when it comes to the amount of code that must be written to perform the same task. Take a look at this example:

Python:

print “Hello World!\n”

Java:

public static HelloWorld{

public static void main(String []args) {

System.out.println(“Hello World”);

}

}

Python is much more concise and straight to the point. It doesn’t require the type of variable to be defined, automatically setting the type of variable according to its value. Whereas, for code to be compiled in Java the type of variable must be defined. Lastly, for practical agility, Java is commonly used for developing web and mobile applications, enterprise applications due to its stability and the large number of features it provides for business applications, and android applications. Python on the other hand is used for artificial intelligence and web development – mostly for the backend part of an application. Interestingly, YouTube is mostly written in Python.

With people’s increasing interest in the fields of data science and artificial intelligence, people get paid up to $103K/year in the US for knowing how to code in Python. Whereas, people knowing how to program in Java get paid up to $80K/year.


Hence, it is evident that both Python and Java are suitable languages to employ; it all depends on the context of the problem and the preference of the programmer!


Written by Stuti Shah and Amanda Y