Learning a programming language is similar to learning a foreign language – the difference is the changes in the industry which require the necessity of learning new languages. But what languages should you learn and how often do you need to look towards new directions? Dávid Nasztanovics, architect of Stylers Group helps us see clearer. 

First, why should you start with Java or JavaScript:

Java and JavaScript, which can be found in Braining Hub trainings, are widespread and provide a basis for picking up new knowledge.

“This is not a coincidence. Java is a static-typed language, which has a wide-range literature on it, thus these properties are a great help through the learning process,” Dávid explained.

The other really similar and dynamically developing language is JavaScript, whose international popularity stagnated, according to the 2019 TIOBE index for 2019. Regardless of its stagnation, it’s growing stronger in the field of web development (both on client and server side in Hungary) and it’s also becoming more popular for mobile application development too.

This language also has a wide-range literature, although its object-orientation is only illusory, so the learning process has some hidden traps. It has quick feedback for beginning programmers, which means code can be written in Developer Toolbar – this quick feedback motivates students to really dig into the language.

It’s also worth it to mention that Java and JavaScript both hold their position in the top 10 list of 2019’s TIOBE (which is a popularity index of programming languages).

“Java is a stable number one, it stands on the first place for a while now, and JavaScript (which is the 7th in this list) got to its position as a result of a really dynamic progress,” Dávid explained while adding that there are similar lists which are arranged by different viewpoints. Regardless of the list, Java and JavaScript still remain the top contenders for each one.

Looking towards new directions:

According to Dávid, Python is also a very useful language to learn. Its popularity is increasing with incredible speed – it has increased by 2% compared to last year and ranks 3rd place on the TIOBE list.

Why is Python so good to learn?

“To learn Python, you need to acquire indentation which is the vertical separation of logic. It is about how various logical levels of tasks are connected with each other,” Dávid said. “Also, Python is different from other programming languages, because there is no line break character in it, so only the depth of indentation will define what line belongs to a given logical part.”

According to Dávid, it is important for every programmer to understand the structure of a given program, so any skills learned in Python can be useful later.

Another important reason for Python is that it’s unavoidable in the field of data science and artificial intelligence. This is because AI algorithms are the domain of mathematicians rather than programmers and -out of all the aforementioned languages, Python is the easiest to learn. It is also suitable for embedded systems and web applications, so it is one of the only truly universal programming languages.

Thinking in two depths

It is important to also distinguish between basic languages (the aforementioned languages belong in this category) and frameworks. Basic languages can be used in the long-term and it is worth learning a new language every 3-4 years. Frameworks, on the other hand, are the toolboxes for languages. They progress according to the actual standpoint of the profession with respect to code organization and data traffic. This means frameworks can change at an extreme rate. They can also change from project to project, which is why it’s important for aspiring developers to be prepared for lifelong learning.