The technology you choose to study is as important as a University you enter. If you make the wrong decision you'll get a pile of troubles instead of a well-paid job you enjoy doing. If you opened this article it means you've already considered choosing Python development as a future profession. In this article, we want to dot the I's and cross the T's and find out what are the benefits of Python compared to other languages. We will find all the differences between Python and Java, Ruby, PHP and C# to understand what technology you need. But before we do that, let's find out what is Python used, who uses it and why.
Advantages of Using Python Over Other Languages
Where, why and for what Python is used for
Python was created almost 40 years ago. Since then, we've got thousands of sites and other software projects based on this technology. Developers all over the world like it due to it's peculiarities which make Python stand out from other programming languages.
What are the advantages of Python?
Below, we've named the most obvious bright sides of Python. All these benefits made the language super popular and because of them, huge multinational companies chose Python for their programs, more about these companies you can read in one of our previous articles.
Advantages of Python development language
We can say that Python is a minimalistic language. It is very easy to write and read. And when it is time to think about a problem, a developer can focus on the issue, not on the language and it's syntax.
Python is free and open source. It means that the developers don't have to pay for anything. They can share, copy and change it. This fact has also helped Python to create a very strong community around itself which only makes it stronger and develops the technology very fast. The community allows professionals to share their knowledge and experience with beginners.
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Why Should You Use Open Source Libraries in Your Project?
Python is compatible with numerous platforms, so a developer doesn't have to bother about any issues which often occurs with other languages.
Python supports procedure-oriented as well as object-oriented programming. In the procedure-oriented programming, a developer applies reusable pieces of code. The object-oriented programming uses objects which are based on data and functionality. Despite the fact that OOP languages are usually very complex, Python managed to stay simple and neat.
Python community has created a huge pile of various libraries for Python. With their help, you can manage documentation, perform unit testing, databases, web browsers, email, cryptography, graphical user interface and many more things. All there stuff is included in the standard library, however, except it, there are a lot of other libraries available.
Where to use Python language?
For many years Python has been on the top of various popularity rankings for programming languages. The language can be used for almost anything. It is aimed at increasing productivity of programmers rather than the code they write. Python is used for web, desktop applications development, automation scripts, complex calculation systems, scientific computing, life support management systems, Internet of Things, games, robotics, natural language processing and many more.
Moreover, the code is laconic and understandable even to those who have never written it. Due to the simplicity of the code, further maintenance of programs written in Python becomes easier and more enjoyable compared to other languages. And from a business perspective, this entails costs reduction and increases the productivity of a programmer.
Who uses Python?
The community of Python developers is constantly growing and the quantity of libraries for the language is growing as well. It all makes Python one of the most versatile programming languages in the world which can easily fit any project. Still, we need to mention that Python is very popular in scientific area. Especially in Data Mining and Machine Learning programs.
To understand all the advantages of using Python over other languages, we will compare Python with the most popular web technologies. Let's start with PHP.
Python vs PHP
From the development point of view, PHP is a web-oriented language. A PHP application is more like a set of individual scripts maybe even with a single semantic entry point.
Python, on the other hand, is a versatile language which can be also applied for web development. A web application based on Python is a full-fledged application loaded into memory with it's internal state, saved from the query to the request. Choosing between Python or PHP for web applications pay attention to these characteristics:
Python vs PHP for web development comparison
Trends and popularity mean a lot nowadays. Some customers and product owners want to use only the most popular and hyped technologies for their projects. In such a case you can be a very skilled developer with no customers and jobs at all. That is why before learning anything make sure that the subject you want to know will be famous and not forgotten in 1, 5 or 10 years.
However, PHP and Python are among the most popular programming languages in the world and you have nothing to worry about. PHP was used to build such giants as Wikipedia, Yahoo, WordPress, Friendster, MailChimp, Flickr and many others. But don't think that Python has nothing to show. The technology was used to build YouTube, Instagram, a desktop version of Dropbox, Reddit, Bitbucket, Quora, Spotify, Pinterest, internal services of Facebook and a part of PayPal system!
The variety of tools is also extremely important while you are choosing your technology. It defines the simplicity and convenience of your work. If a technology offers multiple instruments for different tasks a programmer can be sure that he won't have to do everything from scratch.
The most popular frameworks for PHP are Laravel, Symfony, CodeIgniter, Yii 1 and 2, Phalcon and many others. These tools can help you create powerful and neat applications. Python, on the other hand, can't boast of such a number of frameworks. The most usable are Django and Flask. But, we can assure you that it will change soon due to the growing community of Python.
Python is number one technology for Fin-tech software. Want to know why? Then follow the link!
It is usually the first question which a student wants to find out. The easier education process is, the faster he can start working and making money.
And the winner in this category is, of course, Python. It's syntax is easier and simple to learn. Unfortunately, we can't say the same about PHP. PHP requires much more time and efforts to master. Python lets you make minor mistakes without code breakages. It gives newbies some confidence to move on with studying.
From the newbie's perspective, you may want to choose something easier, something more flexible and it is Python. Python allows you to create secure applications while PHP requires additional tools for these purposes. But don't forget that PHP was created specifically for web development and is used here more often.
Java vs Python which is better?
Some developers claim that Python is more productive than Java. However, this information should be proved at first. What is the difference between Python and Java?
The Difference between Java and Python
Java is a strictly typified language which means the variable names must be explicitly declared. In contrast, we have a dynamically typed Python, where no declaration is required. There are many disputes about dynamic and statistic typing in programming languages. However, one thought should be noted: Python is a versatile language with simple syntax, which makes it an excellent solution for writing scripts and quickly developing applications for various fields.
Java allows you to create cross-platform apps, while Python is compatible with almost all modern operating systems. In terms of start, Java is way too complicated for beginners compared to Python. And the ease of reading code is also better with Python. But, if you want your code to be executed from anywhere, then choose Java. The other advantage of Java is that it lets you create network-based apps while Python can't boats of it.
Java is much more complicated than Python. If you have no technical background learning Java isn't going to be easy. On the other hand, Java is used to program for different environments and if it is what you want, you should go for it.
Python vs C#
Now, it is time to move on and inspect C#. The technologies are very different but both can be used for web development.
Comparison of Python vs C#
In terms of simplicity, Python was originally made to look like English speech, so many expressions in it are very easy to read, especially if you use suitable variable names. In addition, due to simple syntax, there are no complicated constructions such as syntactic brackets, a huge number of word-modifiers, various C-like constructions and different ways to initialize variables. It all makes the code written in Python easy for understanding and for learning.
At the same time, C#, due to the language heredity, has lots of things from C++ and Java, which is initially expressed in C-like syntax. What is more, C# syntax makes it necessary to follow certain rules when writing your own methods or inheriting classes, which is accompanied by another stream of word-modifiers. One shouldn't also forget about blocks of code which should be 'wrapped' in braces. Python doesn't have it all, it uses shifts which also make the code look neat.
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As for the script writing, it's probably worth mentioning that programs which Python calls scripts are actually scripts, they are just files with code that can be easily executed by the interpreter. One can open them in any editor, work with them and then immediately run again. It is a huge advantage if there is no IDE or a compiler at hand. Moreover, with Python it's much easier to write cross-platform scripts which do not even need to be recompiled.
Yet, as a minus of Python, we can highlight the need for an installed interpreter on the machine with scripts. Well, or at least an interpreter packed together with the script in one package/executable file. As a result, it will increase the size of the script from a couple of kilobytes to a dozen megabytes. Not very convenient for one-time use.
In turn, C # requires IDE for normal programming. As a plus of C#, it has a very strong support for various components of the Windows system when you are writing scripts for Windows. For example, there are built-in tools for working with the registry, WMI, the network and so on. And C# allows you to use WinForms, which makes it very easy to create a graphical interface if it is suddenly needed after all.
There is no correct answer what language Python or C# is better. Python is easier to learn, it has many more open source libraries compared to C#. Yet, the standard library of C# is better than Python's, C# has more features, it's performance is higher and it evolves really fast.
Difference between Ruby and Python
In terms of the first language, Ruby and Python are the most popular ones. Ruby is extremely popular technology for building websites. Among the most famous are Twitter (the early version), Basecamp, Github, Airbnb, Slideshare and Groupon.
Ruby and Python
Ruby and Python are both object-oriented languages, and both are dynamic and flexible. The main difference between these technologies lies in a way they solve a problem. Ruby offers different approaches while Python usually has only one. This fact can become an advantage and a disadvantage at the same time.
The most popular framework of Ruby is Ruby-on-Rails. It is very similar to Django because both frameworks were designed to solve the same tasks. If we compare the communities of these technologies, we'll see that they are approximately the same. Nevertheless, the people who form these groups are different. Python is very popular in Data Science and Math, so here you can find lots of academics and professors.
Remember, when it comes to web app development, everything that you can do using RoR, you can also do in Django. Both languages are fast and efficient. Python would be a better choice if you are interested in apps with lots of computing and data processing. Ruby will help you to build traffic-heavy apps.
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The secret success component of any technology is a community created around it. The collaboration of different people can define it's future evolution. The Python supporter group is one of the biggest and the most diverse in the world. There are not only thousands of individual developers who support the group but also giant companies, such as Google, Yandex, Dropbox, Mozilla, Microsoft (use it in Visual Studio), Intel and many others. These and many other companies have created the biggest and the most popular projects in the world using Python.
We gave you today lots of information to think about. The variety of modern programming languages gives you a wide range of options. The choice you make today will form your future career. We can only advise you to have a clear vision of the projects you would like to work on and pick the appropriate technology which fits them the best. Contact us if you have any questions and don't forget to subscribe to our blog!