If you're debating on whether or not you should learn Python, the answer is probably yes. As any developer will attest, it's a great addition to almost any tech stack — and it consistently ranks highly among the most popularly used programming languages.
Python's popularity stems largely from its power and versatility. Below, we'll explore the reasons behind Python's popularity and its various applications to help you decide whether or not the language is right for you.
What makes Python a good choice?
There are several reasons behind Python's popularity, the most common of which include:
- Its syntax is easy to read, making it one of the easiest programming languages to learn.
- Its versatility allows it to be used for automation, web development, machine learning, and much more.
- There's an extensive array of libraries and frameworks that extend its functionality.
- Python developers can expect a decent salary, with even entry-level developers averaging over $85k per year.
- Python developers are highly in demand.
- There's a large, supportive community of Python developers you can reach out to when you're stuck.
What is Python used for?
As we said earlier, Python's versatility enables a wide range of applications. Let's take a look at its utility in automation, web development, game development, and more.
Python is often used to automate background tasks. That's where it got its start. You can write Python scripts to scrape data from your favorite website at scheduled intervals and have it sent to your email address. You can write another script that watches Twitter for specific hashtags and saves tweets to an Excel file so that you can track them. You can even use Python to build and deploy a website to a server with one command.
With Python, you can build websites that generate HTML pages dynamically based on their URL. Python offers some of the most popular web development frameworks used today, including Flask and Bottle.
You can even create 2D or 3D video games in Python. Some well-known video games that use Python include Battlefield 2, Civilization VI, Eve Online, and Sims 4.
Data manipulation and analysis
Python is heavily utilized in data science and analysis. With libraries like Beautiful Soup, you can retrieve unorganized data from web pages and store and organize it for later use. Then, with libraries like Pandas, you can transform and manipulate the data before visualizing it with Python.
Knowing Python will allow you to work in the exciting field of machine learning or artificial intelligence. With Python, you can build predictive models using Tensorflow, gather meaning from text with natural language processing, or build your own artificially intelligent chatbot.
For more information on Python’s applications, check out our article on what Python is used for.
What jobs use Python?
Python is a widely-used programming language. You'll find it used in every industry, large and small. There are many career paths available to a Python developer, even in big tech. Instagram, Netflix, Google, Reddit, and many other tech companies you know by name have Python in their software stacks. Here are some specific jobs that use Python:
Python frameworks like Flask and Django provide developers with pre-built tools that make web development quicker and easier. Want to learn how to use Python for web development? We'll show you how to build Python web apps with Django.
Data scientists and data analysts
As we explained earlier, data science is one of Python's primary applications. Data scientists and analysts use programming languages like SQL, Python, and R to collect, manipulate, and analyze data to identify patterns, trends, and business-advancing insights and solutions.
Quality assurance engineers
Python is often used for load testing and automated application testing. Load testing helps determine if an application can handle traffic before it's released to the public. Automated application testing helps developers find bugs quicker than the manual testing process. Quality assurance engineers create and perform these tests.
Python developers are proficient with the language in all its applications and can write code for everything from simple scripts to huge web apps.
Can I learn Python on my own?
Absolutely. It helps to have some guidance, though. Learning to code can be overwhelming if you don't know where to start. Our Learn Python 3 course is great for beginners, as it covers the basics and fundamentals of Python programming and teaches you how to build complete applications.
How quickly can I learn Python?
The answer depends on what you want to do with the language. With its simple, English-like syntax, you can start learning basic Python programming in as little as a few hours. Of course, more advanced skills will take longer to learn, but consistency is key. If you can commit to an hour of programming a day, you can become a Python expert in a matter of months.
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding of Python's utility and whether or not the language is right for you. If you're still uncertain, try learning its basics in our Learn Python course. Once you master its basics, branch into Python libraries and frameworks like Flask and Django. Check out our catalog for our full list of Python courses and tutorials.