10 Programming Languages of 2017

Overview

Programming can be a scary concept to some, but it shouldn’t be. I have listed out 10 languages used in 2017 and tried to offer some perspective on them. If you’re a beginner, this is a great way to really get a quick handle on what’s going on right now.


The List

10:  Objective-C

Objective-C is the main programming language used by Apple for their macOS and iOS systems. It is an object-oriented language, which simply means that the code is built around the use of “objects”. They can be thought of as blocks of information that make up the whole program – blocks that can exchange information, get bigger or smaller, or change their attributes.

This language was developed in the early 1980’s by Brad Cox and Tom Love for their company Stepstone. In 1988, a company called NeXT acquired the license for Objective-C. After some time, Apple purchased NeXT. (LINK 1) Since then Apple has used Objective-C as its main programming language. However, Apple’s self-developed language, Swift, has become more prominent and is starting to replace Objective-C.

9: Swift

Swift is a new programming language developed by Apple for their iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. It is built on top of parts of Objective-C, but with a modern emphasis on compatibility. (LINK 2) Both Swift and Objective-C are compiling languages, which means they need to be packaged together before they can run.

It is to be the future language for all of Apple’s devices; a universal language to connect the Apple lineup. Although it is a new language, it will certainly be around for some time.

8: Perl

Perl is a family of scripting languages that are like C languages. Perl is an open source, interpreted programming language. An interpreted language is one that does not need to compile the code written before running. It can be thought of as always ready to run. Other interpreted programming languages are JavaScript, Python, and Ruby.

Developed in 1987 by Lary Wall, Perl is on its 5th release, Perl 5. There is also a Perl 6, but this is a completely different language that was developed by a different organization. (LINK 3) Perl is mostly used on the web and works in the background to connect various systems. Perl is typically easier to learn, and faster to write than other C languages such as C++.

7: PHP

PHP is a general-purpose scripting language that is well-suited for web development. It is typically used as a server-side language, as opposed to a client-side language such as JavaScript. With a server language, the user of the web page has no idea what code is being used behind the scenes because the server contains the source code and only shows what it outputs. (LINK 4)

PHP is very easy for newcomers to use and is a recommended server side language for web development due to its easy integration with HTML, the language of the internet. It would be recommended to learn some front-end web development such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, so that you could have a better understanding of what PHP can do.

6: C#

C#, not to be mistaken with C++, was developed to solve memory leak problems common with C/C++. It is more like Java than anything else.

It is a strongly typed object-oriented language that can be used to develop Windows desktop applications, websites, console applications, and even Android applications. Although not the most popular language, it is rapidly gaining traction as a reliable, well-developed language.

5: C++

C++ is built off C, one of the first programming languages. It is a general-purpose object-oriented language developed by Bjarne Stroustrup. (LINK 5) It is a very popular language that is used in anything from investment banking to video game development.

Although popular, it is typically a hard language for beginners due to all the nuances built into the syntax. Beginners would be better off learning Python or JavaScript. However, due to all the nuances, it is very fast once compiled, which is why it is used in environments that require quick processing.

4: SQl

Pronounced “sequel”, SQL is a database language. It is used to access and make changes to large amounts of data. It can sort, delete, filter, find, and perform many other operations on very large amounts of data. It is typically used with programs such as MySQL and Microsoft Access. (LINK 6) It is one of the most widely used languages in the technology and business world.

SQL is not like a traditional programming language. There isn’t as much syntax, which makes it very easy for beginners to pick up. However, this does not limit the complexity of tasks that can be performed by those with much experience.

3: Python

Python is a widely used, multi-purpose, interpreted programming language. It can be used for web development, desktop applications, data mining, mathematic analysis, machine learning, and much more. It is known for its very readable code and light syntax. It could be comparable to JavaScript in that aspect but is more widely used outside of web development.

It was released in 1991 by Guido Van Rossum, and is named after the Monty Python series, not the constrictive reptile. (LINK 7) Due to its clear syntax, it is easier for beginners, but still very powerful and can accomplish large operations with very little code.

Python really shines in data analysis and machine learning. Experts in those fields utilize Python to develop new and cutting edge functionalities that lead to changes in the way data is analyzed in the world around us.

2: HTML/CSS/JavaScript

HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language and is the bare bones of the internet. All the text is there because of HTML. Most of the images, such as photographic pictures, gifs, memes, and more, are there because of HTML. It is very easy to learn and is generally recommended to be the starting point for aspiring web developers.

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets and can be thought of as the component that gives websites their smooth layouts and professional coloring. All the cool navigation bars, the big fonts, the intuitive layouts, and everything in between is from CSS. CSS is generally what people learn after HTML. First, you learn how to write the text, then you learn how to style it.

JavaScript is what gives websites their functionality. It is an easy to learn, object oriented, interpreted language. It is not to be mistaken with Java. Java was developed by Oracle, but JavaScript was developed in 10 days in May 1995 by Brendan Eich for then Netscape, now Mozilla. (LINK 8) It is a widespread language with much documentation and separately developed frameworks and libraries that aid in web development. It allows developers to add functionality in the background of websites, make interactive games, or give web sites modern animations.

If these three languages were to be made analogous to a group of 3 siblings, HTML would be the unwavering older child – isn’t very creative or quirky, but always there when you need them. CSS would be the artsy middle child that has some crazy ideas, but more so an eye for the aesthetics. Lastly, JavaScript would be the geeky, crazy, full-of-vigor youngest child. They would be the one constantly looking for new ways to do things.

1: Java

Java is the king of programming languages if there had to be one. Some people might disagree and say that the king is C, and they would have a fair point. However, Java is extremely widespread and can be used for anything from developing Android applications to developing enterprise business software, to managing back-end web development, and much more. It is an object-oriented, compiled language, much like C#.

Java was developed in 1995 by an Oracle team led by James Gosling. (LINK 9) It is not the hardest language to learn, but also not the easiest. It has received some criticism for its bulky syntax but still remains one of the most popular languages. Java is also the language most universities choose to teach as their introductory language and is a language that will be around for decades to come.

If you’re someone who is new to programming and is hoping to get a job out of it, I would recommend learning Java. It has a presence almost everywhere, and getting a job would not be too difficult if you are comfortable with the language.


Links

LINK1: http://www.techotopia.com/index.php/The_History_of_Objective-C

LINK2: https://developer.apple.com/library/content/documentation/Swift/Conceptual/Swift_Programming_Language/

LINK3: http://searchenterpriselinux.techtarget.com/definition/Perl

LINK4: http://php.net/manual/en/intro-whatis.php

LINK5: https://www.techopedia.com/definition/26184/c-programming-language

LINK6: http://www.sqlcourse.com/intro.html

LINK7: http://groups.engin.umd.umich.edu/CIS/course.des/cis400/python/python.html

LINK8: https://www.w3.org/community/webed/wiki/A_Short_History_of_JavaScript

LINK9: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/overview/javahistory-index-198355.html

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