Top 5 Programming Languages For 2020

Top 5 Programming Languages For 2020

Introduction

At the moment we can choose out of thousands of programming languages to learn. We have so many different choices that we get into paralysis by analysis. Even if we focus on the mainstream languages that have a high reputation, we still have around 20-30 languages to choose from.

Actually the programming language you choose to implement your idea is not as important as a lot of people think. But still we want to make the best choice and pick a programming language that is the best for what we want to do. When we go into machine learning, there are certain languages that are very well suited for that field. However, the same languages are not at all a good pick when it comes to 3D-game development.

In this little blog post we are going to talk about the five best programming languages to learn in 2020. Notice that this list is my personal opinion (even though it is backed by facts and statistics) and you might very well disagree with it. Still, I tried to make this list as diverse as possible, so that everyone finds a well suited language for their needs. Also, at the end, we will talk about some additional notable mentions. Now let’s get right into it.

1 - Python

I think it is no surprise that Python dominates this list by far at number one. Not only is it my personal favorite but also objectively speaking it is probably one of the most popular and powerful languages out there. Especially for beginners Python is the perfect choice and for everyone who wants to get into machine learning and data science Python is a must-learn. However, don’t think that learning only Python is enough. If you never learn other statically typed languages like Java or C++, you are missing out on a lot of programming skills and understanding.

Pros

  • Dynamically typed
  • Lots of machine learning libraries
  • Easy to learn
  • Perfect for beginners
  • General-purpose language
  • Large community
  • Lots of jobs available
  • Platform-independent
  • Very fast prototyping
  • Huge future potential

Cons

  • Not suitable for mobile development
  • Limited Understanding (High Level)
  • Slow since it is an interpreted language
  • Database access layer is not very mature
  • Not suitable for hardware-near programming
  • Not suitable for game development

Rating

Speed & Efficiency
General-Purpose
Community
Simplicity
Machine Learning
Future Potential

2 - Java

You can hype Python and JavaScript as much as you want but Java remains the number one enterprise programming language. If your goal is to work as a professional developer for a large corporation, there is probably no better choice than Java. This language is stable, has huge frameworks and is the programming language most people learn first. Its syntax is very similar to that of C, C++ and C# and it is a general-purpose language. It is used for web apps, sometimes for video games and for many other purposes.

Pros

  • Perfect for enterprise applications
  • Large professional frameworks
  • General-purpose language
  • Perfect for beginners
  • Automated garbage collection
  • Large community
  • Lots of jobs available
  • Platform-independent
  • Supports multi-threading
  • Native Android language

Cons

  • Not optimal for game development
  • Not many machine learning libraries
  • Not suitable for hardware-near programming
  • Slower than C/C++
  • Expensive memory management
  • Less future potential than Python

Rating

Speed & Efficiency
General-Purpose
Community
Simplicity
Machine Learning
Future Potential

3 - JavaScript

I am not much of a JavaScript developer myself but it would be ignorant to not include this language into the list. It started out as a language for web browsers and it developed into a multi-purpose language. Nowadays back-end, front-end, mobile apps, games and even desktop applications may be developed with JavaScript. The reason for that are all the powerful frameworks like ReactJS, NodeJS, Angular etc. Also JavaScript has a huge community and the language is very popular.

Pros

  • Many fields of applications
  • Many awesome frameworks
  • Multi-platform mobile apps with React Native
  • Client-side is very fast
  • Lingua franca of the web
  • Huge community
  • Must-know for web development
  • Easy to learn
  • Very popular
  • Tensorflow for machine learning

Cons

  • Not optimal for enterprise software
  • Still focused on web and mobile
  • Not suitable for hardware-near programming
  • Might very well be replaced
  • Lots of alternative frameworks
  • Many people disable JavaScript
  • Results might differ in the various browsers

Rating

Speed & Efficiency
General-Purpose
Community
Simplicity
Machine Learning
Future Potential

4 - C/C++

Old but gold is what comes to mind when we talk about C and C++. Yes these languages are different and they have different fields of applications but the reason to learn them is kind of the same. Wherever you need a lot of performance or have to work at a hardware-near level, these two are the go-to languages. Additionally, many systems are still running on C or C++ which leads to a lot of job offers for that language. Generally speaking, people who are very good at C or C++ programming are usually highly respected in the IT-world.

Pros

  • Very good performance
  • Hardware-near programming
  • Excellent for game development
  • Can be used for almost everything
  • Lots of job opportunities
  • Old but still highly used
  • Makes you a better programmer
  • C has excellent portability
  • Great community

Cons

  • Very complex syntax
  • Lots of manual work (especially in C)
  • C is not object-oriented
  • Might be replaced by Rust over time
  • Not good for beginners
  • Not suitable for mobile development
  • Too low-level for many complex tasks

Rating

Speed & Efficiency
General-Purpose
Community
Simplicity
Machine Learning
Future Potential

5 - C#

Last but not least we have Microsoft’s proprietary giant C#. This language is actually quite powerful and probably the only real competition to Java in the enterprise world. It is a fast and stable general-purpose language that outperforms Java in terms of efficiency. Even though it is basically bound to Windows, you can also use certain frameworks to develop platform-independent software as well. There is even the framework Xamarin, which allows you to develop cross-platform mobile apps.

Pros

  • Better performance than Java and Python
  • Great enterprise language
  • Excellent for game development (Unity)
  • Very good job opportunities
  • Safer than C/C++
  • Quite beginner-friendly
  • General-purpose
  • Great integration with Microsoft products
  • Decent community
  • .NET Core movement is open-source

Cons

  • Works only with Windows server
  • Proprietary language of Microsoft
  • Expensive infrastructure
  • Not really platform-independent
  • Less flexible than C/C++
  • Harder to learn than Python
  • Not optimal for machine learning

Rating

Speed & Efficiency
General-Purpose
Community
Simplicity
Machine Learning
Future Potential

Notable Mentions

Now finally we also have some notable mentions here. These are languages that are also very useful to learn, but didn’t quite make it into the top five.

Go

Another powerful very fast and also simple programming language developed by Google. A lot of future potential.

Ruby

Great programming languages and perfectly suitable for professional web development with the Rails framework.

PHP

I am not the biggest fan of it but PHP is everywhere. Numerous systems run on it and there are a lot of jobs.

So this is my list of the best five programming languages to learn in 2020. What do you think about it? Would you add a language? And what is your favorite programming language? Let me know your answers down in the comments!

I hope you enjoyed this blog post! If you want to tell me something or ask questions, feel free to ask in the comments! Down below you will find some additional links, leading to some other channels of content. Check out my Instagram page or the other parts of this website, if you are interested in more! I also have a lot of Python programming books! Stay tuned! And thanks for reading!

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