Python vs. Node.js – Which programming language should you choose?

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Being proficient in multiple coding languages is the cornerstone of every experienced developer. Every project comes with its required specifications which pushes the coder to choose a tech stack that’s best suited to the project. Today, we’re going to settle the hot debate surrounding the popular programming language Python and the JavaScript runtime environment Node.js.

If you have ever found yourself in the conundrum of whether to use Node.js or Python; this article will not only solve your confusion, but also help in understanding the various pros and cons of the two languages.

Factors to consider before choosing

  1. Type of Project – Business Application, Game, Payment Software etc.
  2. Product Type – Messenger, Data Platform, E-Commerce etc.
  3. Application Geography – Local, Contry-wide or World wide.
  4. Budget – Technology, Number of resources, Project Duration etc.

Pros and Cons of Python

Ever since it was first introduced in the 90s, Python has been the go-to language for many programmers. The flexibility and versatility that it offers has ensured that Python is used even today for projects involving data science and machine learning, among others. Let’s take a look at some of the major advantages of using Python.

Pros of Using Python

  • Best suited for less experienced developers – Python is often touted as a user-friendly language and thus has become the most popular coding language amongst university students in the U.S.! What gives Python this advantage over other languages? In simple words, it is kind towards many mistakes that junior coders often commit during frameworks.
  • More versatile – While Node.js can be restricted to desktop apps, Python’s use-cases go beyond the web and satisfy different technology and business needs. For example; if time is one of your constraints, Python allows the coder to develop an MVP or a prototype which helps to drastically reduce time-to-market (TTM); thanks to the rapid development methodology. Different features such as editing, syntax extensions and excellent support have made Python a universally loved language.
  • Vast community – One of the reasons why it is easier to find Python developers is because of the open-source nature of the language which is aided by constant improvements from thousands of contributors around the world. Junior developers often find help and solutions to their problems due to the ever-so-supportive nature of the community of Python developers.

Cons of Using Python

  • Slower execution – When compared with compiled languages such as C or Swift, Python tends to have a slower speed of execution since it is an interpreted language. Because of this, Python is not preferable for applications that require complex calculations focusing on high-performance.
  • Not suitable for mobile computing – It is clear by now that as good as Python is for desktop platforms, it is still regarded as a weak language for gaming and mobile computing. The language also has a few design restrictions and thus requires a longer time for testing.

Pros and Cons of Node.js  

Node.js is a runtime environment that enables the developer to use JavaScript for back-end as well as front-end development. Launched in 2009, it is swiftly gaining popularity worldwide and is often defined as a server-side script language.

Pros of Using Node.js

  • Faster performance – One of the stand-out advantages of using Node.js is that developers have noticed just how faster it is when compared to Python. As it takes full advantage of Google’s V8 Java engine, it is a great option when building real-time applications such as chat-bots. 
  • Simple ecosystem – Node.js is loved by experienced developers because of the single-purpose libraries, simple packages and frameworks that enable the developer to make wiser decisions. Conscious decisions result in fewer mistakes and eventually reduce costs.
  • Ability to use JavaScript – Perhaps the biggest advantage is the ability to use JavaScript. If the developer knows JavaScript, they can take charge of the complete application (front and back-end). This also means that the company does not need to hire a different resource efficient in another language to finish the project. By sharing the front and back-end codes, one can eliminate duplicate work; which is also a huge pro of using Node.js.

Cons of Using Node.js

  • Not suited for heavy computation – Programmers have often complained that Node.js cannot maintain tasks which are CPU-intensive. What this essentially means is that an application written with Node will stop all other tasks due to a new heavy computational request. Thus, Node.js isn’t considered for projects based on machine learning and data science.
  • Weak documentation – This is one area where Python defeats Node.js as it is not equipped with comprehensive documentation. Node.js also lacks some other nuanced features such as tools and core libraries which forces programmers to search alternative options!

Conclusion

We hope that this clears any of your doubts regarding the difference between the two coding languages. Our deep-dive into the pros and cons of both Python and Node.js makes it easier for you to understand which language is best suited for which project. If you have any software development requirements, you can contact ITCube by clicking here and our experts will get back to you in a jiffy!

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