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Why Do Some Developers Prefer Python?

It's a programming language darling of those working in the data science/machine learning space, which might explain why Python takes the top spot in a recent IEEE survey. Plus: .NET Insight Podicast 11 explores coding camps.

If data science were an "It" girl, the Python programming language would be the current "It" girl. Python is popping up more often in the tech media, as well as right here on Visual Studio Magazine. Python (paired with C#, of course) is currently the focus of VSM frequent contributor James McCaffrey's The Data Science Lab column.

Python is an interpreted, high-level programming language that's used as a general purpose language, and its often compared to C++ or Java in capability but different in efficiency. What's giving Python some street cred these days is a version of Python, NumPy, that houses an extensive library of mathematics functions that make it ideal for working on numerical problems and processes, and SciPy, for scientific problems, which are ideal for those working in the data science/machine learning/big data computing triumvirate.

As computing forms expand past laptops, phones and tablets and into IoT, Python has the potential to shine particularly with embedded system. A blog post on the Zerynth site explores the rise of Python on embedded systems, pointing to this survey on the IEEE site. As pointed out on the Zerynth blog, even though Python gets top billing on the IEEE's survey of top programming languages in general, it doesn't even make a showing for languages used for embedded systems programming. But it's bound to, surmises the folks at Zerynth, as embedded systems become a larger opportunity. (Understand that Zerynth points out this information as it looks to highlight its own Python-based embedded systems tools, but if that's where you're at these days --working on apps targeting embedded systems -- their tools are worth exploring.)

If you're interested in learning more about NumPy, check out this tutorial on GitHub; for SciPy, this nice intro from James McCaffrey on the MSDN Magazine site is the best place to get your bearings.

In this episode of .NET Insight Podcast, a story from Visual Studio Magazine media partner THE Journal that covers Codeverse, a camp for learning code geared to 6- to 12-year-olds that opens this week in Chicago. Meanwhile, Microsoft's Imagine Cup also takes place this week, in Seattle, with the arrival of student developer teams from around the world to showcase their software and app development skills. Links mentioned in this show:

Here are a handful of other links we've run across that might be useful to you, in no particular order and definitely not conforming to any particular theme:

Know of an interesting link, or does your company have a new or updated product or service targeted at Visual Studio developers? Tell me about it at [email protected].

About the Author

Michael Domingo is a long-time software publishing veteran, having started up and managed developer publications for the Clipper compiler, Microsoft Access, and Visual Basic. For 1105 Media, he managed MCPmag.com, Virtualization Review, and was Editor in Chief of Visual Studio Magazine and host of The .NET Insight Podcast until 2017. Contact him via his photography Web site at http://domingophoto.com.

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