What Is Java?

Java is built on C++ for a simple-to-use language

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Java is a computer programming language. It enables programmers to write computer instructions using English-based commands instead of having to write in numeric codes. It’s known as a high-level language because it can be read and written easily by humans.

Like English, Java has a set of rules that determine how the instructions are written. These rules are known as its syntax. Once a program has been written, the high-level instructions are translated into numeric codes that computers can understand and execute.

Who Created Java?

In the early 90s, Java, which originally went by the name Oak and then Green, was created by a team led by James Gosling for Sun Microsystems, a company now owned by .

Java was originally designed for use on digital mobile devices, such as cellphones. However, when Java 1.0 was released to the public in 1996, its main focus had shifted to use on the internet, providing interactivity with users by giving developers a way to produce animated web pages.

However, there have been many updates since version 1.0, like J2SE 1.3 in 2000, J2SE 5.0 in 2004, Java SE 8 in 2014, and Java SE 10 in 2018.

Over the years, Java has evolved as a successful language for use both on and off the internet. 

Why Choose Java?

Java was designed with a few key principles in mind:

  • Ease of Use: The fundamentals of Java came from a programming language called C++. Although C++ is a powerful language, it is complex in its syntax and inadequate for some of Java's requirements. Java built on and improved the ideas of C++ to provide a programming language that was powerful and simple to use.
  • Reliability: Java needed to reduce the likelihood of fatal errors from programmer mistakes. With this in mind, object-oriented programming was introduced. When data and its manipulation were packaged together in one place, Java was robust.
  • Security: Because Java was originally targeting mobile devices that would be exchanging data over networks, it was built to include a high level of security. Java is probably the most secure programming language to date.
  • Platform Independence: Programs need to work regardless of the machines they're being executed on. Java was written to be a portable and cross-platform language that doesn't care about the operating system, hardware, or devices that it's running on.

    The team at Sun Microsystems was successful in combining these key principles, and Java's popularity can be traced to it being a robust, secure, easy to use, and portable programming language.

    Where Do I Start?

    To start programming in Java, you first need to download and install the .

    After you have the JDK installed on your computer, there's nothing stopping you from using a basic tutorial to write your first Java program.

    Here's some more information that should be helpful as you learn more about the basics of Java: