Which one should I learn: Python or Scala?


In this article, we will discuss which one to learn between python and scala in detail.

What is Scala?

Scala, which stands for "scalable language," is a high-level programming language that combines functional programming and object-oriented programming. It runs on the JVM (Java Virtual Machine) and is compatible with existing Java code and libraries.

When compared to other languages, many programmers regard Scala code to be error-free, short, and readable, making it easy to use for writing, compiling, debugging, and running programs. Scala's developers expand on these ideas, stating that "Scala's static types help eliminate bugs in complicated applications, and its JVM and JavaScript runtimes allow you to design high-performance systems with simple access to vast ecosystems of libraries."

What is Python?

Python is an interpreted, object-oriented, high-level programming language with dynamic semantics. Its high-level built-in data structures, together with dynamic binding and dynamic typing, make it particularly appealing for usage as a scripting or glue language to connect existing components together.

Python is popular among programmers due to its relative simplicity, support for many packages and modules, and the fact that its interpreter and standard libraries are free. These benefits, as well as many more, motivate programmers to learn Python.

Uses of Scala

Scala can be used in place of Java for anything. It's perfect for back-end programming, scripting, software development, and web design. Scala's seamless integration of object-oriented features and functional languages is highly praised by programmers as the ideal tool for parallel batch processing, data analysis with Spark, AWS Lambda expressions, and ad hoc scripting with REPL.

The following are the companies using Scala −

  • 9GAG
  • Asana
  • Groupon
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • Twitter

Uses of Python

Below is the list of various uses of python −

  • Data analysis and machine learning- Python is frequently utilized in modern technologies such as Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. Python's support for multiple libraries makes it ideal for developing machine-learning models.

  • Web development

  • Automation or scripting

  • Software testing and prototyping

  • Game development

  • Language development

  • Data visualization

  • Finance

  • Programming Applications

  • Everyday tasks

  • It is a popular language in robotics and is often used for Robotic Process Automation.

The following are the companies using Python −

  • Dropbox
  • Instagram
  • NASA
  • Netflix
  • Spotify
  • Uber Technologies

Comparison: Python vs Scala

Performance

When it comes to performance, Scala beats Python. Scala leads Python in terms of performance since it is a statically typed programming language, whereas Python is a dynamically typed programming language. The compiler understands each variable or expression at runtime in statically typed languages.

Variables in a dynamically typed language are interpreted at runtime rather than following a predefined structure for declaring variables. This less formal approach to variable definition is ideal for quickly building an application or script. This flexibility, however, opens the way to add code errors and necessitates more resources from the compiler during runtime.

Scala also makes use of the JVM (Java Virtual Machine) and a vast ecosystem of Java libraries. Scala now has performance characteristics similar to Java. Finally, Scala provides multithreading, which allows tasks inside an application to run concurrently.

These three Scala programming language properties allow Scala to run up to ten times quicker than Python!

Cost

Cost analysis in Python and Scala isn't as simple as you may think because coding in both Python and Scala IDEs is, of course, free. To calculate costs, we must consider the resource toll and security costs.

Python is a quick-and-dirty programming language that allows dynamic typing, making it ideal for scripting on the go and building together a rapid prototype. The resource cost and time allocation will be extremely minimal.

But, overall, Scala is statically typed, which makes it less prone to problems. What is the significance of this when considering cost? Because application and compile-time errors cost both time and money. In the worst-case situation, a flaw in an application may pose a security vulnerability, putting the program or the entire enterprise at risk. In the best-case scenario, faulty programs or problems result in dissatisfied clients and regular patching.

When the cost of Python and Scala in terms of both team resources and potential bugs and security risks is considered, we believe Scala and Python are tied.

Security

Because Scala prevents variable rewriting, statically typed languages like Scala follow type safety principles. In contrast, dynamically typed Python does not follow type safety principles.

Finally, Scala, by following type safety principles, is simply a more secure language, resulting in fewer bugs and application weaknesses.

Which one should I learn: Python or Scala?

Which programming language is better? Lame answer, but it depends on your project's requirements.

Python is a good choice if you wish to work on a smaller project with fewer experienced programmers. However, if you have a large project that requires a lot of resources and parallel processing, Scala is the way to go.

Differences between Python and Scala

The following table shows the comparison between python and scala −

Python Scala
Python is a dynamically typed programming language. Scala is a statically typed programming language.
Python is a dynamically typed Object Oriented Programming language, therefore doesn’t need to specify objects and variables Because Scala is a statically typed Object Oriented Programming language, we must specify the type of variables and objects.
It is easy to learn and use. Scala is easier to learn than Python.
In Python, at runtime, additional work is created for the interpreter. Scala generates no extra work, making it 10 times faster than Python.
Python decides the data types at runtime. This is not the case in Scala, which is why it should be used instead of Python when working with big amounts of data.
In comparison to Scala, the Python community is far larger. Scala is also well-supported by the community. Yet, it is lesser than Python.
Python allows heavyweight process forking but not proper multithreading. Scala includes reactive cores and a variety of asynchronous libraries, making it a preferable alternative for concurrency implementation.
Python's methodologies are much more complex because it is a dynamic programming language. As Scala is a statically typed language, testing is significantly easier.
Due to its English-like syntax python is very popular Scala has a considerably larger role to play in scalable and concurrent systems.
Python makes it simple for developers to write code. Scala is easier to learn than Python, but it is more challenging to develop code in Scala.
Python has an interface to numerous OS system calls and libraries. There are numerous interpreters. Scala is generally a compiled language, with all source code being compiled before execution.
When there is a modification to the existing code, the Python language is highly prone to issues/bugs. Scala does not have such a problem.
Python has libraries for machine learning, data science, and natural language processing (NLP). Scala, on the other hand, lacks such tools.
Python is suitable for small-scale projects. Python is suitable for large-scale projects.
Python does not support scalable features. Scala offers scalable feature support.

Conclusion

In this article, we learned about the features and applications of Python and Scala, as well as the differences between them. Finally, we compared Python and Scala to determine which one to learn

Updated on: 15-Dec-2022

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