Should You Continue Learning Java, or Move to Another Language?

Java was originally released in 1995, making the language more than 25 years old today. As a result, newer developers may wonder whether adding Java to their skillset is a smart move or if they may be better served by bypassing it in favor of an emerging language.

If you’re trying to decide whether you should continue learning Java or head in a new direction, here’s what you need to know.

Java Isn’t Obsolete

First, it’s important to understand that while Java isn’t new, it isn’t shifting into obsolescence just yet. It’s still considered highly capable and remains a favorite among developers of all ages and experience levels.

Additionally, its longevity thus far means the amount of legacy Java code around is astounding. Many companies still have applications featuring a substantial amount of Java code that they intend to maintain, making professionals with experience in the language broadly in-demand.

The Use of Alternatives

In many cases, if you’re debating whether you should learn Java or switch to something else, it’s because Java potentially benefits your career path. In those cases, most professionals are exploring the potential of specific Java alternatives, wondering if those may provide more value.

One key example is in the world of Android development. While Java has long been a part of tech stacks, Google actively encourages the use of Kotlin. Many of Kotlin’s advocates sing the language’s praises, particularly when it comes to compiling speed.

However, not everyone is hopping on the Kotlin train. Even if Kotlin is capable, that doesn’t mean developers (or their employers) want to transition.

The same goes for other aspiring alternatives. While talk around Go and Rust is, at times, feverish, their use isn’t expanding at the same speed. Java maintains much of its momentum within the developer community, only sitting behind JavaScript and positioned alongside Python when it comes to popularity.

Ultimately, Java is a capable, robust language that many developers and companies rely on heavily. Plus, its use potential has grown over the years, turning it into a go-to option for a wider range of projects. It isn’t a language developers are planning to walk away from any time soon, ensuring Java’s long-term relevance.

Should You Learn Java or Another Language?

In most cases, which languages will create the foundation for your dream career depends on your long-term goals. However, if you’re considering shifting away from Java simply because of talks about a potential successor, it may not be a wise move just yet.

While the alternatives are gaining traction, that doesn’t mean Java is giving up ground. In the end, learning Java still has the ability to boost your career, ensuring you can maintain legacy code and tackle new projects today and into the future.

If you want to learn more about how you can take your developer career to the next level, the team at The Squires Group wants to hear from you. Contact us today.


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