Why Learn Python?

All data used in this article is as of January 6, 2016

Python is a general-purpose language, which means it can be used to build just about anything, which will be made easy with the right tools/libraries.

Professionally, Python is great for backend web development, data analysis, artificial intelligence, and scientific computing. Many developers have also used Python to build productivity tools, games, and desktop apps, so there are plenty of resources to help you learn how to do those as well.

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Beginner Friendliness

Python was designed to be easy to understand and fun to use (its name came from Monty Python so a lot of its beginner tutorials reference it). Fun is a great motivator, and since you'll be able to build prototypes and tools quickly with Python, many find coding in Python a satisfying experience. Thus, Python has gained popularity for being a beginner-friendly language, and it has replaced Java as the most popular introductory language at Top U.S. Universities.

Easy to Understand

Being a very high level language, Python reads like English, which takes a lot of syntax-learning stress off coding beginners. Python handles a lot of complexity for you, so it is very beginner-friendly in that it allows beginners to focus on learning programming concepts and not have to worry about too much details.

Very Flexible

As a dynamically typed language, Python is really flexible. This means there are no hard rules on how to build features, and you'll have more flexibility solving problems using different methods (though the Python philosophy encourages using the obvious way to solve things). Furthermore, Python is also more forgiving of errors, so you'll still be able to compile and run your program until you hit the problematic part.


Not Easy to Maintain

Because Python is a dynamically typed language, the same thing can easily mean something different depending on the context. As a Python app grows larger and more complex, this may get difficult to maintain as errors will become difficult to track down and fix, so it will take experience and insight to know how to design your code or write unit tests to ease maintainability.


As a dynamically typed language, Python is slow because it is too flexible and the machine would need to do a lot of referencing to make sure what the definition of something is, and this slows Python performance down.

At any rate, there are alternatives such as PyPy that are faster implementations of Python. While they might still not be as fast as Java, for example, it certainly improves the speed greatly.


As you step into the programming world, you'll soon understand how vital support is, as the developer community is all about giving and receiving help. The larger a community, the more likely you'd get help and the more people will be building useful tools to ease the process of development.

5th Largest StackOverflow Community

StackOverflow is a programming Q&A site you will no doubt become intimate with as a coding beginner. Python has 85.9k followers, with over 500k Python questions. Python questions are also the 3rd most likely to be answered when compared to other popular programming languages.

3rd Largest Meetup Community

At meetups, you can generally network and learn from fellow developers. Meetups often offer mentorship to those who want it as well. There are 1300+ Python groups on Meetup.com, totaling 608k+ members. Thus, in terms of programming languages, Python is the 3rd largest community.

4th Most-Used Language at GitHub

The more useful projects there are, the more likely someone has already built a function you need and built it well, which will greatly speed up your development process.Over 950 Python projects have over 500 stars.

Python is also known to have an abundance of libraries that assist with data analysis and scientific computing. In addition, PyGames is a neat game engine to build games with if you want to make simple games.

Career Opportunities

Salary information from gooroo.io

On Angel List, Python is the 2nd most demanded skill and also the skill with the highest average salary offered.

With the rise of big data, Python developers are in demand as data scientists, especially since Python can be easily integrated into web applications to carry out tasks that require machine learning.


According to the TIOBE index, Python is the 4th most popular programming language out of 100

With the rise of Ruby on Rails and more recently Node.js, Python's usage as the main prototyping language for backend web development has diminished somewhat, especially since it has a fragmented MVC ecosystem. However, with big data becoming more and more important, Python has become a skill that is more in demand than ever, especially it can be integrated into web applications.

As an open source project, Python is actively worked on with a moderate update cycle, pushing out new versions every year or so to make sure it remains relevant.

A programming language's ability to stay relevant also depends on whether the language is getting new blood. In terms of search volume for anyone interested in learning Python, it has skyrocketed to the 1st place when compared to other languages.

Interest in learning Python grew by 22.1% in 2015

Clearly, Python will continue to reign in terms of relevance, and has a pretty good future thanks to its large community.

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