Want to learn to code but don’t know where to start? Look no further than Python! Here are five reasons why it’s the best coding language for beginners.
It’s always exciting to join a new sports team, get your first car or learn some new skills. It’s easy to feel nervous about a new beginning, particularly if it’s linked to our careers. Add to this the lack of experience. If you decide to learn how to code, you might feel the same. You might be wondering – what code language should I learn first, which one is beginner friendly, and how much time will it take me to learn the language? If you’re interested in learning to code but don’t know where to start, Python is a great language to consider. Why? Because it’s beginner-friendly, versatile, and widely used in industries ranging from web development to data science.
Let’s explore five reasons why Python is the best coding language to learn first.
- It’s easy to Learn and Understand
- It’s Versatile and Widely Used
- There’s a Large Community and Support Network
- It’s great for Building Real-World Applications
- There are plenty of Resources and Tutorials Available
It’s easy to Learn and Understand
So why learn Python? First of all, if you’re new to programming and you’re unsure about which programming language you should learn first, it’s an excellent place to start because of its simplicity. The challenge of learning a new language that looks nothing like the languages you’re used to reading and writing can be one of the biggest obstacles when you start learning to code. Python, however, has an English syntax. In other words, the structure of statements follows the grammatical arrangement of words as in an English sentence. It was designed to be concise and easy to read, making it more accessible to first time coders than many other coding languages. As such, Python was built to be accessible to beginners. In fact, as any code is read more often than written, Python language’s design is easier to read than some of the other coding languages.
As you can see above, Python’s syntax is straight-forward and easy to understand, making it a great language if you’ve never coded before. It uses English-like words and has fewer complex syntax rules than other languages. You can accomplish a specific task with fewer lines of code compared to other languages, using Python. This makes it easier for you to learn the basics and get used to the language in a shorter time. This also means you can focus on learning more complex programming concepts such as how to write functions rather than getting bogged down in the details of the language itself.
It’s Versatile and Widely Used
Python is a versatile language that can be used for a wide range of applications – from web development to data analysis to artificial intelligence. It’s used by companies like Google, Instagram, and Spotify to write their recommendation algorithms. It’s also popular in the scientific community for research in fields such as astronomy. It’s safe to say that no matter what field you’re in, one way or the other you’ll probably be able to use Python in your work and personal projects. As such, learning Python opens up a world of possibilities for your future career and personal projects.
Here’s a few characteristics that make Python so versatile:
1. Industrial applications
There are a lot of uses for Python across many areas like web development, data science, machine learning, AI, scientific research and more. Lately, Python’s impact on AI and Machine Learning has been growing with innovations in AI tools like ChatGPT and Github Copilot now based in Python. However, Python’s importance as a programming language is not recent. Peter Norwig, Engineering Director at Google has said that:
“Python has been an important part of Google since the beginning, and remains so as the system grows and evolves. Today dozens of Google engineers use Python, and we’re looking for more people with skills in this language.”
Python.org lists a variety of success stories in other fields and applications that use the programming language. The length of this list proves that Python can be used in an infinite number of ways.
Python is a cross-platform programming language. This means that it’s able to run code written in one operating system such as Windows, Mac, Linux hardware, and even Android and iOS, in a different operating system without any issues. Another important aspect of Python’s compatibility is its ability to run with other programming languages. A few common examples of Python implementation with other languages are Jython (Python integrated with Java) and CPython (Python integrated with C). These have several benefits. For example, in some cases, Jython can be faster than standard Python due to its ability to leverage the performance optimizations of the Java Virtual Machine (JVM).
3. Open source
Python, which is licensed under an Open Source License approved by the Office of Scientific and Industrial Research, was designed so that it can be used freely and distributed for commercial purposes. ‘The term ‘open source’ refers to a programming language which falls within the scope of an open source protocol. This means that, in an open source licence, the language is not protected by copyright and can be modified or built upon according to certain conditions depending on which provisions are laid down. The Python Software Foundation acts as the administrator of this licence.
There’s a Large Community and Support Network
While programming can sometimes feel like a solitary sport, support from your community is one of the best tools you’ll ever have. Programmers are continuing to learn from and build on their predecessors’ successes thanks to online forums, local meetups as well as the open source community. One of the biggest advantages of learning Python as a beginner is the available support and the large community of people globally who are working with Python. Python has a massive user base because Python is open-source. There are many contributors constantly working to improve the language and its libraries. This means that if you run into any issues or have questions, there are plenty of people and resources available to help you out.
For example, Stack Overflow is the largest online community for developers to learn, share their programming knowledge, and build their careers across different languages including Python. The chart below shows how significantly the Python community on this platform has grown over the years.
Source: Stack Overflow
GitHub is a place for programmers to store project files and share them with others. In the 2022 Octoverse report, they found that Python remains the second most-used programming language on GitHub. Interestingly, Python’s use grew more than 22 percent year on year with more than four million developers on GitHub using it at some point in 2022.
Trends in languages used in Github 2014-2022, Source: Octoverse report 2022
It’s great for Building Real-World Applications
Python’s versatility makes it a great choice if you’re a beginner who wants to learn a language that you can then use to build real-world applications. Python’s simplicity and readability also make it easy to understand and modify existing code, which is a valuable skill for any programmer. With Python, even if you’re a beginner you can start building useful applications right away, which can be a great motivator to continue learning and improving your skills.
Some real-world applications which use Python are:
1. Python for web development
Web development covers all the activities carried out to build websites and web based software applications. Every website consists of two parts: a client side, which runs code from your computer’s Internet browser; and a server side, where the code is running on that Web site.
2. Python for data analysis
Data analysis aims at finding useful information, informing conclusions and supporting decision making through the examination, cleansing, transformation or modelling of data. There are various ways of doing data analysis and it is being used across areas such as business, science or social sciences. Data analysis plays an essential role in today’s economic landscape, which helps businesses to make better decisions and be more efficient. Python has a range of libraries such as numpy, pandas and matplotlib which are specifically built to help with efficient data analysis.
3. Python in Finance
Financial technology (FinTech) automates and improves the delivery and use of financial services. It ranges from the technology behind the online banking portal that you use as part of your banking services to blockchain applications. Today, it is used in all areas of finance, like investment management, banking, training and fundraising. Python is used in financial analytics tools for data visualisation and complex statistical analyses as well as in stock trading platforms to automate the buying and selling of stocks.This helpful article on Python Fintech Projects and Use Cases is a great place for extra details on where Python comes in handy.
There are plenty of Resources and Tutorials Available
Demand for Python programming skills has been growing in recent years. In 2022, Python was the second most preferred language by developers when they had multiple options.
This means that there is a lot of interest in the market to provide courses and classes to learn Python as a programming language. There are plenty of resources and tutorials available online for free. From online videos to interactive coding challenges, there are countless ways to learn Python at your own pace and on your own schedule without breaking the bank!
Free resources can include step-by-step tutorials, short-term courses, online forums, and official Python documentation to help you get started in learning the language. There are also coding challenges and competitions to keep you motivated. Here are some free resources that can get you started in Python right now:
- Youtube. There are thousands of free Python tutorials on Youtube, covering almost every conceivable use case.
- Dataquest. Interactive courses are a great option that makes it easier to get started, since you don’t have to figure out how to install and run Python locally. However they only offer limited free introductory courses before having to pay for continuing with more courses.
- Coursera. University-branded video lecture courses that cover a number of different introductory Python topics are available. You can enrol for free but will need to pay for a certification.
- Books. Many Python books, including Learning Python, by Mark Lutz, are available for free if you don’t mind reading them on a device.
If you’re new to programming, Python certainly offers many benefits. And if you want to build a successful career in technology, you can choose Python as your first programming language to learn coding. What are you waiting for? You’ve now got all the info and tools to get started right away!
Which is the easiest programming language to learn as a beginner?
How long will it take to learn Python?
Answer: The amount of time it takes to learn Python depends on your goals and how much time you can dedicate to learning. Some people can learn the basics in a few weeks, while others may take several months or more to become proficient. It’s important to remember that learning Python is a continuous process, and you’ll likely be learning new things for years to come.
Which language to learn first for coding?
Answer: Python is a great first language for beginners because it is easy to learn and has a simple syntax. It’s also a versatile language that can be used for a variety of applications, including web development, data analysis, and artificial intelligence. There are also many resources available for learning Python, including online tutorials and courses.