Java is a programming language created by James Gosling in 1991, and later publicly released in 1996 by Sun Microsystems. It has been the most popular programming language worldwide since 2001 and numbers show that it will stay there for at least another decade. Here are a few more reasons why Java is a wonderful first step towards a bright career future in programming:
1. Portable and versatile
Java is a highly portable language. It follows the write-once-run-anywhere (WORA) philosophy. Once you write your code and compile it to Java bytecode (.jar file), you don’t have to do anything else to run it on any OS which supports Java. It achieves that by using the JVM (Java Virtual Machine). For Java to support a new platform, the JVM needs to be rewritten, and then every existing Java program, library, framework will work on it. This is exceptionally useful for big projects, as you don’t need to write different code for every platform your program runs on. Java is also highly versatile. Its design makes it easy to create almost any type of application. This makes it a perfect multi-purpose programming language.
As I mentioned above, Java is used in almost everything. This includes desktop applications, games, web servers, automotive software, industrial robots, medical equipment, IOT devices, mobile phones, banking systems, mainframes and even internet routers. This means that there is always a need for Java developers in almost every tech industry.
Check out: 4 reasons to choose Java
Initially, Java was designed to be an easier alternative to C++. While keeping a big part of C++’s syntax, Java manages to present its functionality in a way that is easier for beginners to understand. Java is a garbage-collected language, which means that you don’t need to manually manage the memory of the program, and instead focus on implementing new features. Java runs on a virtual machine, which improves security and portability. It uses just-in-time (JIT) compilation, which does most of the optimization work for you. This makes programming with Java easier than many other languages.
Java has been around for a very long time (23 years). It is one of the most mature languages out there. Since its release, Java has built a big community around itself. It has the second biggest StackOverflow community, where millions of professional Java developers help beginners. If you encounter any problem while using Java, be it an error or a bug, somebody has probably already found a solution for it. Being so mature, Java has had many frameworks built for it. A few notable examples are: Spring – a framework for backend web development, JavaFX – a software platform for desktop applications, Hibernate – an object-relational mapping tool for databases, and JUnit – a framework for unit testing.
Java has held its first place on the TIOBE Index since 2001, only falling to second place in 2015. It is the most widely used language. 9 out of 10 Fortune 500 companies use Java in one form or another. It, along with Python, is the most popular introductory programming language worldwide.
Java has been the highest-ranking language by popularity since 2001. Its mature set of frameworks and libraries, big community, relatively simple, but flexible design, and the always high demand for it have made it one of the best languages for beginners to learn, and that would most likely not change in the foreseeable future.