Computer programming is becoming an increasingly necessary and popular skill. Many high school and college graduates are exposed to programming even if they are not in a computer science field. This rise in exposure has led to new programmer archetypes and categories, such as the emerging “fun programming,” citizen programmers, and programmer hobbyists, along with the traditional academic and boot camp-educated programmers.
This blog will help you learn about the top backend programming languages commonly used by developers, along with high-level information about each language’s features, advantages, and limitations.
What is Backend Development?
Classifying and grouping programming languages is a topic of hot debate in academic and social coding circles. But backend programming languages generally fall into three main categories:
Scripting languages are generally easier to learn and can sometimes be utilized by individuals who are not “professional” programmers or in projects where just writing code to execute commands that quickly fulfill the requirements is of utmost importance. However, there are scripting languages that offer a lot of power in the hands of skilled developers.
Scripting languages are a great place to start for individuals pursuing a career in programming or casual programmers who want to automate specific tasks. The most basic need for scripting languages is simplicity because it will be used by those with a minimum of programming knowledge or in situations where cranking out code that does the job is all that matters.
Object-oriented programming (OOP) is based on objects, which can be modules of code or data. This programming model designs software around objects, not functions and logic. Classes of objects are defined with associated methods and functions. Using concepts like inheritance and encapsulation, code reuse is maximized to reduce duplicate code. Developers code programs by creating objects that interact with one another.
OOP is very efficient, especially when utilized with teams of developers because each developer or group of developers can work with specific encapsulated objects using the object inputs and outputs without having to know the details of the code. Most of the more popular programming languages support object-oriented programming at varying levels. OOP is currently the most popular programming paradigm.
Functional programming is a programming paradigm in which developers try to bind commands in mathematical functions style. It is based on Lambda calculus mathematical logic using functional abstraction where each function should have no side effects.
A function is a chunk of code that contains lines of enclosed code that can be executed repeatedly. This allows programmers to break down requirements into smaller fragments that perform specific actions. Basically, the functions are coded to take an input and produce an output without using any outside code. It is a declarative type of coding style with the main focus on “what to solve” versus an imperative style where the focus is on “how to solve,” using expressions as opposed to statements.
Functional programming is currently very popular, even for programmers who aren’t traditionally functional programmers. Many programmers learn functional programming because that level of extraction can help improve code skills even in different paradigms.
Top Backend Languages
Backend languages are used to code the interactions between the user interface and the data store. The server-side operations contain the communication protocols and logic required to execute commands on the database.
Now that we have determined the list of backend development languages, below is a table summarizing some of their key features, advantages, and limitations in order of popularity.
|Interpreted language||Used for both backend and frontend development||No IO functionality for reading or writing files|
|Lightweight||Platform independent||No networking support|
|SQL||Does not require compiling||Extremely large user community||Data normalized to reduce duplication|
|Simple syntax rules||Standardized query language||Difficult UI interfaces|
|Fast and efficient||Platform independent||Steep initial learning curve|
|Python||Object-oriented||Great for rapid prototype development||Slower execution speeds|
|Interpreted language||Tremendous standard and external library support||Weak for mobile computing|
|Less verbose||Platform independent||Uses a lot of memory|
|Java||Object-oriented||Supports multithreading||Platform independence is less important for modern application dependency because of containers and cloud services|
|Compiled (javac) and interpreted (JVM)||Mature language with extensive community support||Poor memory management and JVM affect performance. Slower than C, C++, and C#|
|Secure language||Platform independent||Verbose and complex code|
|Bash/Shell||Fast and efficient OS access||Great for automating repetitive tasks||Hard to write complex programs compared to modern languages|
|Command-line interpreter||Great for running scripts from multiple languages||No object-oriented programming support|
|Scripts are simple to create||Not resource intensive||Platform dependent (Linux and macOS)|
|C#||Object-oriented||Simple multithreading||Slower than C and C++ and requires compilation after code changes|
|Fast development times||Large developer community||Low-level programming is not supported|
|Integration with other .NET technologies||Easier to learn than C and C++||Higher learning curve than some other object-oriented languages like Python and PHP|
|C++||Object-oriented||Low-level language||Relatively complex and difficult to learn|
|Very efficient general purpose language||Large developer community||Manual memory management, no garbage collection|
|Fast execution and powerful language||Platform independent||Security can be an issue due to the use of pointers|
|PHP||Object-oriented||Low learning curve||Relatively poor performance|
|Built-in database connection||Strong library support||Not good for enterprise-level application|
|Less verbose||Platform independent||Security issues|
Debate About Top Languages Will Continue
There are a lot of programming languages on the market, and most developers know several languages. There are also a lot more professional and casual application developers. Due to this increasing interest in programming, the discussions about the top languages and which are better for specific situations will continue. This blog identifies the top backend languages based primarily on popularity and gives a summarized comparison.
So, now that I’ve compared commonly used backend languages, it’s up to you to decide which is best for your situation and need.