Programming

Why Python? 5 Reasons

Choosing a programming language to learn/use can be quite a big decision, especially for a beginner. Here’s why I think that Python is an awesome choice for novices and experienced programmers alike.

1. Easy to Learn

Python is undoubtedly one of the easiest languages to learn. Why do you think Udacity rolled out their first course “CS 101: Building a Search Engine (Intro to Programming)” in Python, and not Java / C++ ?

2. Libraries and Frameworks

Python has tons of Libraries and Frameworks to help you achieve almost anything. From hosting web servers to plotting graphs – there is a lot of readymade code available, which means less ‘Reinventing the Wheel’

Examples :

  • Django : High Level Web Framework
  • Beautiful Soup : HTML/XML parser designed for quick turnaround projects like screen-scraping, will accept bad markup.
  • Py2exe : Converts python scripts into executable windows programs, able to run without requiring a python installation.

Source : http://wiki.python.org/moin/UsefulModules

3. Short Code

Compare a piece of code in C++ and Python. Let’s take the simple “Hello World” example.

This simple one line program in Python:

print (“Hello World”)

-- turns into a 4 line program with hashes and brackets and what not in C++

#include stdout

int main()
{
std::cout << "Hello, world!\n";
}

4. Readable code, similar to human language

One thing that I've noticed is that what I write on my notepad and the actual code that I create – are very similar when I'm using python. This makes "Thinking in code" much easier.

Programs must be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.

—Abelson & Sussman, Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs

5. Documentation with examples

Python is completely documented. Every single function/module has not only definitions, but examples too. And if you can't find an answer to your question in the Official Python Docs, you'll very likely find it in forums/helpdesks, because Python has an awesome community supporting it.

I'm breaking the 5 point barrier and adding one more.

6. Why not? 🙂

Python Comic from www.xkcd.com

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