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Python vs C++: Which should you go for

The discussion between Python and C++ is an interesting one, particularly because these two languages have sharp differences across several parameters such as syntax, complexity, use cases, etc. While Python codes can be easily read and understood, C++ is a little bit more advanced even though it is high-level. It may interest you to know that Python was written in C, the root language for C++. 

Enough said, let’s jump into what C++ and Python are and compare them side by side. 

What is C++

C++ is a statically typed, general-purpose language that is used to create high-performing programs. C++ is an extension of the C programming language. Its syntax is relatively more complicated but it can be used to build complicated and large programs. Furthermore, C++ has a faster compilation time. 

One thing about C++ is that codes in C++ have to be compiled again when moved to another OS before it can be executed. This allows codes to be converted into a machine language (or machine code) before they can run on that computer. C++ however still runs codes fast, faster than Python in a given OS.

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What is Python?

Python is a high-level dynamically typed programming language that is used for various purposes such as software testing, machine learning, web development, hacking, etc.

The programming language has built-in data types, data structures, objects and has a library that can be reused to create quick web applications. 

There are also a lot of open-source projects on GitHub that can be reused. When you do not have to reinvent the wheel every single time. Python has an easy syntax that focuses on simplicity and readability. Some say python codes can be read like plain English making it a choice language for beginners. 

Why C++

  • C++ is a general-purpose language
  • C++ runs faster.
  • You can do high-level abstractions with C++
  • C++ codes are reusable

Why Python

  • Its syntax is simpler than the languages in the C family
  • It is a general-purpose language and it is increasingly being used for machine and deep learning models
  • It is compatible with many platforms 
  • It has a lot of inbuilt libraries to do common tasks, aiding better development 
  • Python’s shell is auto-installed
  • Python is relatively easy to read and debug 
  • You can test your programs with its interactive shell before final deployment 
  • You can interface the most common DBMS systems with Python

Features of C++

  • C++ supports Object Oriented Programming which means you can implement concepts such as inheritance, polymorphism, data encapsulation, etc. 
  • C++ codes are portable, which means that your codes can be run on different environments without fail, irrespective of the OS. 
  • C++ is a popular programming language 
  • C++ is a high-level programming language
  • C++ is a compiler-based programming language. 
  • Codes in C++ runs faster
  • C++ has inbuilt libraries that can be used to perform basic and common tasks.

Features of Python 

  • Python is an interpreter which means codes are run line by line
  • Python can be run on many hardware facilities with the same interface
  • The learning curve of python is gentle. Suitable for complete freshers in programming
  • Python provides a structure for small as well as large codes to be run
  • Python has an interactive shell that allows you to do a test and debug your program
  • It is a high-performing programming language
  • Python allows you to integrate low-level libraries into its interpreter
  • You can integrate other programming languages such as C, C++, or Java

Head to head comparison between C++ and Python

CompilationC++ codes are compiledPython codes are interpreted
Memory management It does not support garbage collection. This means that memories that are no longer used are still kept.Python does support garbage collection.
SyntaxCodes are not so easy to read and writeThe syntax is easy, making codes easy to read and write
NatureIt is a statistically typed languagePython is dynamically typed
Variable codeVariables defined within a loop are limited to that loopVariables defined in a loop can be accessed outside the loop
InstallationMight run into issues during installation It is easy to install
Speed It is relatively slowerC++ is way faster than Python
TIOBE ratingPython has a TIOBE rating of 3Its TIOBE rating is pegged at 4
Companies usageUsed by Lyft, Twitch, Google TelegramUsed by Netflix, Instagram, Spotify, Uber, etc

Applications of C++

  • C++ is widely used to develop embedded systems such as Internet of Things, smartphones, Multimedia systems in automobiles, etc.
  • C++ is a fundamental programming language for most Operating Systems, be it Windows, Mac, or Linux. 
  • C++ is great for game development and is one of the most popular languages for game development. 
  • A lot of high-level libraries even for other programming languages are fundamentally programmed with C++. For instance, TensorFlow, a high-level library for Python machine learning, is programmed with C++.
  • Due to its speed, C++ is used to program rendering engines of web browsers.
  • You can build servers and microcontroller programs with C++.

Application of Python

  • Python provides great libraries and frameworks for web development. Examples include Flask, Django, Pyramid, etc.
  • Python is widely used for data science, data visualization, and machine learning.
  • Python is used to create bots.
  • Python also has a wide application in build GUI programs.
  • Python is great for game development.
  • Python can be used for web scraping.

Demerits of C++

  • C++ does not have security.
  • Its syntax is quite complex.
  • C++ does not support garbage collection.
  • C++ is quite difficult to debug when used for web development.
  • It does not support built-in threads.

Demerits of Python

  • Python is way slower than Go or any C family programming language.
  • Python is not so great for mobile development.
  • Its database access has limitations.
  • Python is not the best choice for memory-intensive tasks as its dynamic typing feature would consume a lot of memory.

Equipped with this information, you can choose which suits your programming needs. Generally speaking, they are both great programming languages. If you’ve got any questions, feel free to leave them in the comment section and I’d do my best to answer them.

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