Detailed Comparison of Python and JavaScript

Recently I began exploring and dabbling with web development. I started digging into the various aspects of web development, such as front-end, back-end, frameworks and languages used to develop a website, and more.

I came across Python and JavaScript as two programming languages used in web development and realized that they are similar in some ways and different in many others. So here is a summary of my findings in comparing Python to JavaScript. It covers the similarities, differences and answers questions such as which should be learned first, which has more job opportunities, and more.

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How Are Python And JavaScript Similar?

While Python has a diverse range of functionalities, it plays a crucial role in web development, and here’s where it overlaps with what JavaScript offers. JavaScript is used for both front-end and back-end in web development. Below is a list of similarities between Python and JavaScript:

  • Both Python and JS are high-level programming languages.
  • Furthermore, they are both object-oriented programming languages and suitable for large-scale software development that is pretty complex.
  • The programming languages use simple functions and variables and do not involve class definitions.
python code
Python code

How Are Python And JavaScript Different?

I’ve come to realize that the differences between Python and JavaScript are pretty significant. So I’ll be covering some of the significant differences between the two in the table below.

Python has both mutable and immutable data types.JavaScript has no concept of mutability or immutability.
Python’s coding structure involves indentation.JavaScript’s coding structure involves curly brackets.
Python has more modules, giving it a much more diverse set of functionalities.JavaScript has fewer modules and hence is only suitable in certain areas.
Python can be used for data analysis, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and more.JavaScript cannot be used for any of those but merely web development and native applications.
Python is mainly used for back-end and client-side programming in web development.JavaScript is used for both front-end and back-end and is used for server-side programming in web development.
Python has several numeric data types such as integers, decimals, etc.JavaScript has only floating-point data types.  
Python has a class-based inheritance model.JavaScript has a prototype-based inheritance model.
When incorrect arguments are passed in a function, Python raises an exception.JavaScript isn’t concerned with the arguments that are passed into the functions.
Python and JavaScript Comparison Table

Is It Better To Learn Python Or JavaScript?

While Python is helpful for back-end programming in web development, it has a string of other use cases. Currently, it is being used in data analytics, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and other such areas. These fields of study are the future of the computer science industry, and Python spearheads the development in these industries. If you are looking for a career in Data Science, Machine Learning, or Artificial Intelligence, Python is the language for you.

javascript code
JavaScript code

On the other hand, JavaScript is still the go-to language for front-end programming and building personal web applications (PWA). Even today, it is the most popular language amongst tech geeks and technocrats of the world. However, it isn’t suitable for fields such as data science and machine learning. Though this doesn’t seem like a considerable disadvantage, JS surely showcases its incapability to be a part of the future areas of IT.

Python is increasingly becoming the most loved language for its ease of usage and its versatility. So today, if you ask which programming should be learned, I would suggest it depends on your interest. If building web applications is your jam and forte, go for JavaScript by all means. However, if you’re into fields such as AI and ML, Python is a must-have skill set.

Moreover, you have to equip yourself with the skill sets that will be required tomorrow and not just those in demand today. Python falls under the former category and learning it will bring you a lot of benefits.

Should I Start With JavaScript Or Python?

As already mentioned, it all depends entirely on the niche you want to build your career in. If web development and mobile app development are your niches, you should cement all JavaScript concepts. However, if data science, machine learning, etc., are your area of interest, you should learn Python first.

Let’s assume you’re not sure which niche you want to go for, then what? Well, in that case, start dabbling with JavaScript concepts and functionalities. It will be relatively tough compared to Python, but your base will become much stronger. In addition, you’ll be exposed to full-stack development early on and can decide if you want that to be your forte.

machine learning
Machine Learning

Once you’ve explored enough, you can continue playing with it while also learning Python on the side. It’ll instantly become easy for you to grasp syntaxes and structures there since they are much easier. In addition, you can explore areas such as Machine Learning (ML) and see how much you like it or not.

Based on these, you’ll not only be exposed to the pros and cons of both but also the applications of both. And then, you can make a conscious choice as to which niche you’d like to pursue and move towards it.

Is JavaScript Harder Than Python?

Yes, JavaScript is relatively more complex than Python. Although the difference in difficulty isn’t too vast, since both languages are easily understandable, you’ll find difficulties while using functionalities. On the other hand, Python is more diverse than JavaScript and can get your job done much more quickly.

Is It Easier To Get A Job With JavaScript Or Python?

For web development jobs, it is easier to get jobs with a rich JavaScript background than Python. JavaScript is the language that powers the dynamic nature of the web. Having experience in React.js and other JavaScript frameworks is particularly valuable to potential employers looking for web developers.

developer writing code
developer writing code

However, for jobs in Data Science, ML (Machine Learning) and AI (Artificial Intelligence), Python is a must-have on your resume. As referenced earlier in this article, if you are looking to have a career in these emerging technologies, you should go head-first into learning Python.

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