Why Python Most Popular Language
In today’s software world, “Python” is a common word for most software developers. If you are a user of
Google, Facebook, Spotify or Netflix you should thank Python’s founder Guido van Rossum for creating
such a robust, reliable and easily adoptable enterprise scale programming language, because all these big
software giants use Python behind the scenes.
What is Python?
Python is an interpreted, object-oriented, high-level, open-source, general-purpose programming language. It was conceived and developed by Guido van Rossum as a hobby project to keep him occupied during the week around Christmas. In 1991, Rossum released its code and the first formal version was released in 1994. The latest version of Python is 3.7 and it was released in June 2018.
During its early years, Python was seen as a language for scripting and automation. It was easier to use when compared to Shell scripting but not as heavy as C or Java, so it became the ideal choice for scripting and automation tasks. In later years, many useful enhancements were made to the language and Python made in-roads into several other domains.
Why use Python?
Python is a dynamically typed language and is equipped with high-level built in data structures, which
makes it attractive for rapid application development, as well as a scripting language. Python’s easy to learn syntax makes it easier for developers to learn python and start coding with a short learning curve.
Today, Python is well supported with in-built libraries and used in the below domains-
- Data analysis & visualization
- Applying complex statistical & mathematical operations.
- Machine learning, Data mining & Artificial intelligence
- Web scraping
- Web development (Django, Flask)
- Dev Ops
- Automation & Scripting
- Cloud development
Python is well supported in most cloud platforms. For example, there are APIs from Amazon Web Services
(AWS) exclusively for accessing the services in Python. It is evident that Amazon has made this design
decision keeping in mind the growing Python developer community.
Python and its gaining popularity
Stack Overflow (a very popular & commonly used online learning community for developers) trends
indicate that Python is the fastest growing programming language.
The current growth trend of Python per Stack Overflow is-
And the projected growth is-
So, what does this indicate- Developers all over the world are choosing Python as their preferred choice of
language when compared to other similar languages. Something else, that is also evident from this is that
there is a constantly expanding job market for Python developers worldwide and this seems to be the right
time to take the plunge.
What makes Python so popular?
Python is a high-level, interpreted and dynamically-typed language. The fact that it is dynamically-typed makes it easy on the syntax and hence easier to learn & program , refer best Python Tutorials for free. Being dynamically-typed is also the reason why Python’s improves developer productivity.
“A programmer can be significantly more productive in Python than in Java. How much more
productive? The most widely accepted estimate is 5-10 times.”
Let’s take the classic example of printing “Hello World” and see what it takes to achieve this with Java vs
public class HelloWorld
public static void main (String args)
print (“Hello, world!”)
When the founder of Python was developing the language, he wanted to build a language whose code is easy to learn and looks like plain English. He also wanted to build the language in a way that there is probably only one way to do a thing (reducing choices) and the result of this is that we see more uniform code in Python. In Rossum’s words “Readability is often enhanced by reducing unnecessary variability.”
Python’s syntax and coding convention overcomes the drawbacks seen in many programming languages. For example, in Python statements are grouped (for loop or condition checking) using indentation and not curly braces. The use of indentation removes clutter, makes programs shorter, forces uniformity in code and all these make it easier to read someone else’s code. The indentation restricts the freedom in formatting styles (compare this to how curly braces are placed in different styles in C, C++ & Java).
Below is a summary of Python’s capabilities which has made it popular-
- Simple & easy syntax
- Support for rapid development and improved productivity
- Dynamically typed
- High-level built-in data structures
- Numerous libraries & extensions
- Ever growing developer community and the support it provides
Easy to learn, Easy to code, Easy to understand & Improved productivity make Python popular!
Python is open-source and its developer community is large and growing strong. There is a plethora of libraries & packages offered with Python, making it a well-supported open-source language. With all this, Python has seen growing adoption in several domains. Although Python might not be the fastest running language, it is a good runner-up. In terms of developer productivity and coding time, it is a definite winner. If you are a developer who is still skeptical on learning Python, it is time to put on your Python running shoes. A bright prospective future ruled by Python is ahead.
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