It rapidly grew to be used to power all sorts of browser-based tools, from games to email clients to full office application suites.
Over time it has been developed into a full-featured programming language, which can even be run outside the web browser and can now be used to develop desktop and mobile applications which run independently of a web browser.
What is Java?
Java is a completely different programming language developed in the early 1990s by Sun Microsystems (may they rest in peace).
Java doesn’t run in a web browser, but code written in Java on one platform can work on another as Java executes inside a virtual machine – a virtual environment that smooths over the differences in different operating systems and lets code written once run anywhere.
Due to this, it has become very popular, especially with client-server web applications that need to run on various platforms.
Java is popular with professional organizations looking to build large, networked applications – and is a popular learning tool at universities.
Which One Should I Use?
As always, no one language can always be directly compared to another.
The syntax differs between them, but one is no more complex than the other once you get past some beginner hurdles.
- Both are object-oriented with a simple, readable syntax
- Both have free development tools and learning resources
- Both can be run almost anywhere, but js wins (Cordova)
- Both are popular with many learning resources, but js wins
If you’re looking to develop desktop or client/server applications with high reliability, are looking to enter an industry where Java is the standard, or are just looking to learn and aren’t concerned about being able to run your code on Apple mobile devices, Java is a fine choice.