Unearthing the reasons for using Python
Most programming languages are created with specific goals in mind. These goals help define the language characteristics and determine what you can do with the language. There really isn’t any way to create a programming language that does everything because people have competing goals and needs when creating applications. When it comes to Python, the main objec- tive was to create a programming language that would make programmers efficient and productive. With that in mind, here are the reasons that you want to use Python when creating an application:
- Less application development time: Python code is usually 2–10 times shorter than comparable code written in languages like C/C++ and Java, which means that you spend less time writing your application and more time using
- Ease of reading: A programming language is like any other language — you need to be able to read it to understand what it Python code tends to be easier to read than the code written in other languages, which means you spend less time interpreting it and more time making essential changes.
- Reduced learning time: The creators of Python wanted to make a pro- gramming language with fewer odd rules that make the language hard to After all, programmers want to create applications, not learn obscure and difficult languages.
It’s important to realize that, although Python is a popular language, it’s not the most popular language out there. In fact, it currently ranks eighth on sites such as TIOBE (http://www.tiobe.com/index.php/content/
paperinfo/tpci/index.html), an organization that tracks usage statistics (among other things). If you’re looking for a language solely for the purpose of obtaining a job, Python is a good choice, but C/C++, Java, C#, or Visual Basic would be better choices. Make sure you choose a language you like and one that will address your application development needs, but also choose on the basis of what you intend to accomplish. Python was the language of the year in both 2007 and 2010 and has ranked as high as the fourth most popular lan- guage in February 2011. So, really, it’s a good choice if you’re looking for a job, but not necessarily the best choice. However, it may surprise you to know that many colleges now use Python to teach coding, and it has become the most popular language in that venue. Check out my blog post at http://blog. johnmuellerbooks.com/2014/07/14/python-as-a-learning-tool for details.