The Benefits of Learning Multiple Programing Languages

Learning multiple programming languages is helpful because it allows you to understand how to approach a problem from multiple perspectives and with multiple approaches for solutions.

Full Transcript Below:

Cris:

Why is it actually possibly good to know more than one programming language?

Tyler:

Python and JavaScript, I think those are my two strongest ones.

Cris:

… you’ve got your React, and you got your Angular and so on. Any particular one that…

Cris:

So, why so many? Why so many languages?

Tyler:

I think it’s because I like to torture myself.

Cris:

Yeah.

Cris:

So Tyler, I wanted to sit down and talk multiple languages and tech stacks because obviously this is something that I think you know pretty well.

Tyler:

Yeah.

Cris:

So what are some of the languages, if you can give us a good list, that you would say you’re comfortable in? And then let’s follow that up with, what’s a list of stuff that you’ve dabbled in? So, what’s you most comfortable in, and what do you dabble in?

Tyler:

Of course. So, I would say I’m most comfortable in Python and JavaScript. I think those are my two strongest ones which is a good thing. They’re the most popular languages nowadays. I am really comfortable with Go. I’m also really good at PHP as well. And then-

Cris:

Yeah, yeah, you are.

Tyler:

Yeah. And then, let’s see, I’ve done stuff in Haskell. I’ve dabbled in many different languages, like OCaml and all that stuff in Lisp-

Cris:

Lisp.

Tyler:

Yeah. So yeah, I’m pretty curious. So my list is pretty, pretty long.

Cris:

Okay. So Python and then JavaScript, any particular flavor? Cause obviously when you’re talking JS libraries, you’ve got your React and you got your Angular and so on. Any particular one that you would say JavaScript, or is it just in general?

Tyler:

Just in general. I think my favorite flavor of JavaScript, in general, is TypeScript.

Cris:

Okay. Sweet. Very cool. So why so many? Why so many languages?

Tyler:

I think it’s because I like to torture myself. But in all seriousness, I think it’s because I’m a curious person and I like to think differently. Yeah.

Cris:

Okay. And from a programmatic perspective, when you’re there developing and building projects, why is it actually possibly good to know more than one programming language?

Tyler:

I think the main benefit of learning a different programming language or multiple, the main one is you learn to think in a different way or in a different paradigm. Whereas if you’re working in a functional programming language, that can massively differ from object-oriented programming languages, so you learn a different paradigm and it’s just a different way of doing something like performing a task essentially.

Cris:

Right. Cause there may be multiple roads to get to a destination and so being able to travel those different paths might be more beneficial for a specific project.

Tyler:

Yeah. It just depends on the context too. So, one way might work better than a different way. It depends.

Cris:

Gotcha. And so with all of these languages, obviously, I mean you rattled off quite a few. We didn’t even start to scrape the surface of all the different languages and tech stacks and libraries and different things that people are using. There’s so many of them out there. Do you think that’s a good thing? Do you think that’s a bad thing? What do you think? Is it good or bad to have that many languages floating out in the world?

Tyler:

There’s a lot of people, especially in the JavaScript ecosystem, where people talk a lot about JavaScript fatigue, because there’s a new framework popping up every week. In my opinion, I think it’s a really beneficial thing because there’s so many options to choose from and people can actually use something that benefits them or their different use case, or what have you. So there’s so many different options out there and flavors and stuff like that. I think that could be a good thing.

Cris:

Gotcha. And what are some of those benefits? That maybe it’s based off of a language that they already know or a way of thinking? Or is it scalability? You said there’s different benefits of maybe using a particular library.

Tyler:

Yeah, I’d say a little bit of both. It could align with their way of thinking. It could be that particular language or framework solves their problem versus another solution. So yeah, it depends on the use case and the developer.

Cris:

Cool. So when you’re out there, cause you’re obviously always posting up something in our Slack channel about, “Oh, hey, I tried out this new library,” or, “Here’s this new language that I’m looking into,” or so on and so forth. What are you looking for in a new language? What makes you want to learn that? Because I’m sure you’re looking at a lot more than you even talk to us about. So what excites you and makes you want to actually learn a particular language?

Tyler:

That’s a tough one. I think one of my favorite languages is Go, and when I started learning that language, one of my favorite things about that language was its simplicity and its practicality. So that’s the thing I’m looking for. I’m not really looking for shininess. I’m not looking for the next hot thing. It’s is this practical? Is this going to make me productive in what I’m going to do? Does this solve my use case? Just things like that.

Cris:

Gotcha. It’s the bass player of the band. You’re there. It’s got to work and lay the foundation. It doesn’t have to be the lead singer, flashy in the front. I think I get that. No, that makes sense. Are there anything or is there anything exciting that you’ve built in Go that you’d want to talk about? Or, I don’t know, is it just fun projects that you’re doing? Cause you said you love that. Do you build side projects in Go a lot?

Tyler:

Yeah, I think the main thing I’ve built with them was bots, like Slack bots and Discord bots. So, that’s fun. I’m actually working on a project now, on the side, that’s more DevOps related for Bixly too. So yeah, I definitely use that there. We actually have used the Go in production for a specific project that handles a lot of concurrent web traffic and stuff. So yeah, definitely. It’s nice to say that we’ve used Go for production.

Cris:

Yeah. It is helpful. I know it’s definitely brought some interest our way from marketing stuff, to be able to just say, “Yeah, we’re familiar with that. We have people that have used it. And so if you’re looking to, again, handle a high volume of traffic, we can definitely help you out with Go,” so, that’s cool. Anything else? As far as tech languages, things that are exciting or, better yet, if there’s someone that maybe has found themselves stuck in a particular language and is looking to go learn something new, what’s your first piece of advice for them, how they can jump out and learn something new? What gets them unstuck? What breaks them out of the normal?

Tyler:

I don’t know. I would say trying to understand the language that you’re using day-to-day and then maybe branch out and learn a language. Sometimes it might be helpful to think in a different way and then come back to the language you work on and bring those concepts over to the language you’re working on. For example, if you use Pascal, you can probably bring those functional concepts and bring it over and write functional JavaScript and yeah. Stuff like that.

Cris:

That was extremely enlightening. I like that. Cool. Well, I appreciate you taking some time with us. I would say, obviously, to anyone that is in this space or even just new to the space, don’t get stuck in some particular language, but again, branch out. Try and find what works well for you, what clicks, and then as you so eloquently put, go look to other stuff to even build back on what you already know. So cool. I appreciate it, Tyler.

Tyler:

All right.

Cris:

Thanks dude.

Tyler:

Thanks for having me.

Alexandra:

Thank you for joining us for this episode of Bixly Tech Tuesday, all about the benefits of learning more than one programming language. Tyler definitely has spent a lot of time developing his curiosity and learning on his free time a ton of different stuff. And I think he really shared some of the benefits that you get from that. And don’t forget to check out the links down below in our description. You can find our custom software guide, which is completely free, and we’ll walk you through the journey of figuring out how to develop your own application. And, on top of that, you can check out our website, Bixly.com. There’s even a button there where you can sign up for a free app validation meeting with Cris to talk about your app idea.

Originally published at https://blog.bixly.com on June 29, 2021.

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Python/JS developers ready to work with you! California-based software development.