Pros and cons of Java development for your project
The modern high-tech world is an extremely volatile and dynamic field where new know-how crops up almost every month, ousting the one that was considered all the rage just a little while ago. Yet, there are technologies that have remained the bedrock of the software industry almost since its birth. In this article, you will learn about one of these technologies. We’ll discuss the pros and cons of Java.
Even when novel vernaculars enable obtaining state-of-the-art solutions, some oldies are still widely employed by the IT community in multiple use cases. One such tried and true language is Java developing software language. Thousands of experts across the digital realm use it on a regular basis to build software solutions.
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Is Java good for your project?
Java is an open-source, object-oriented programming language that runs on any operating system. Having been introduced in 1992, thirty years later, Java surges back up in programming language popularity, holding among the top six languages according to the 2022 StackOverflow survey.
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Back in the 1990s, it was conceived as an alternative to the then ubiquitous C++, which didn’t satisfy IT professionals in terms of portability, automation of memory management, and novice-friendliness. Today, Java has developed into an entire write-once-run-anywhere ecosystem containing three basic components.
Java Development Kit. By installing the Notebook app on your computer, you can employ this kit to write code for any solutions.
Java Runtime Environment. This is a software distribution instrument consisting of the Java Class Library, Java Virtual Machine, and a configuration tool.
Integrated Development Environment. It is a collection of tools used for editing, compiling, and running code.
Such a comprehensive tech stack that is rightly numbered among Java advantages makes it a handy language leveraged in many project types.
Types of projects where Java is used
Video games. Many game engines employ C# and C++. However, for rookies who want to study the game and graphic development from scratch, Java is a better choice. Especially if we remember numerous frameworks and libraries (OpenGL, LibGDX, and others) offered by Java for this very purpose.
Desktop apps. Another group of Java-based frameworks (Griffon, JavaFX, Swing, AWT) is honed to turn UI creation (which is mission-critical for tree-based or 3D graphical apps) into a cakewalk. AcrobatReader and ThinkFree are good examples of this Java use case.
Web apps and sites. The construction of these software pieces is enabled through Struts, Hibernate, Spring, Servlets, JSF, and other frameworks based on Java. No wonder Amazon, LinkedIn, AliExpress, Wayfair, and other major-league websites use Java for their building.
Mobile apps. Being an official programming language for Android development, Java is employed in almost 50% of mobile apps running on this operating system, including such behemoths as Netflix, Uber, Google Earth, and Tinder. Moreover, the specialized cross-platform framework J2ME can be used to create respective products, functioning across all smartphone types that support Java.
Enterprise software. The benefits of Java guaranteeing solid performance and scalability of the products built with it make it a second-to-none choice for building ERP and CRM systems as well as diverse professional solutions in finance, banking, retail, logistics, and other industries.
Big Data. Although traditionally relying on Python, Big Data technology also makes extensive use of Java, especially its Hadoop and Deeplearning4j tools.
Embedded systems. SIM cards, blue-ray discs as well as various processors and chips employed in integrated electromechanical systems are operated via Java-based firmware.
Internet of Things. Being platform agnostic, Java suits IoT development to a tee. Once you write a code in it, you will be able to run it on a multitude of gadgets linked to an IoT environment.
Does all this mean you should necessarily harness Java for your software project? Not so fast. You can’t do it before you consider the advantages and disadvantages of Java as a developing language. Let’s look at the pros of Java first.
Simplicity. In comparison with C or C++, Java doesn’t have such unpleasant features as storage classes, explicit pointer concepts, and operator overloading. The absence of them simplifies Java syntax significantly, streamlining the debugging and maintenance of Java-based solutions.
Easy-to-learn nature. When technology is kept foolproof, it is easy to master. This refers to Java to the fullest extent, which is totally unlike other programming languages. In contrast to them, Java doesn’t look like a machine language at all but resembles human communication systems instead. And we are better at learning human languages, aren’t we (especially when we have a heap of tutorials to help us)? To make the code written in Java understandable for machines, interpreters and compilers translate it into signs AI can read.
Object-oriented organization pattern. Establishing relations between “objects” (which are data pieces developers operate) is made possible because of the special “grammar” Java employs. In it, you define both the structure of data you use as well as its function. Due to this characteristic, you can not only create new code but also rehash legacy code to be further employed as a part of other programs. Besides, such architecture allows for the concealment of sensitive data and prevents errors in project organization workflow.
Automatic memory management. In the process of software development, IT specialists make use of slews of data which take up considerable memory space. Once they know they won’t need the data anymore, developers are supposed to make memory purges and direct the unnecessary information into the garbage bin. Yet, as often as not, they forget about this essential routine (especially when it is to be performed manually) and face the slow-down of the development process.
Java’s garbage collector functionality spares IT engineers this headache. It automatically figures out objects you haven’t used for some time and gets rid of them.
Multithreading support. While coding, programmers deal with threads as minimal processing units. Switching between several of them takes time because they share the same memory room. With Java, you can run multiple threads at once and make a faster headway on the project.
Distributed character. Among all Java pros, this one is a premium time-saver. Since a software product is the brainchild of numerous experts, they cooperate a lot working on it by using the same data and tools. Java allows for sharing whatever resources you need over multiple endpoints, which speeds up the development radically.
Platform independence. Thanks to Java Virtual Machine, you can build a program once and then run it on any operating system (Android, Windows, or even iOS). The support of the Machine is necessary to translate such a program into a platform-irrelevant bytecode.
A broad choice of APIs. One can’t create a piece of software without being able to involve different utilities, databases, and third-party tools. APIs provided by Java enable such connections, keeping communication channels between all of them open.
Enhanced security. In other languages, explicit pointers that store the memory addresses of values present a ready access pathway for hackers into a solution. These units are absent in Java, thus securing the system against penetration attempts. Moreover, you can define access rules for each class inside the application utilizing Java-specific security managers.
Vast community support. Thirty years of usage is sufficient time for a large developer community to grow around this programming language. It is always there to offer advice, sort out problems, and assist in debugging a software piece you are building.
To let you have a complete picture, we must mention several Java disadvantages alongside the unquestionable Java benefits.
The list of Java cons
Here are the most serious disadvantages of Java.
Sluggish performance. The need for translation of the human-like Java into the digital code and the automated garbage collector running in the backend are the two factors that significantly slow the performance of Java-based programs.
Inadequate desktop app UI. This aspect is handled up to the mark for mobile apps, but the desktop ones are rather deficient in it. To counter this inadequacy, you have to involve third-party GUI builders – after you have figured out which of them suits your project (and that is quite a time-consuming activity for greenhorns).
Too wordy syntax. Long and rather complex sentences are symptomatic of any high-level programming language, and Java is a vivid example of this annoying characteristic.
Absence of backups. Being focused on the storage of data, Java lacks backup capabilities. This Java disadvantage can cost you much time and effort you will have to spend rewriting the lost code in case an emergency occurs, setting at naught a day of hard work.
Java advantages and disadvantages
Let’s compare Java pros and cons against each other.
Java pros and cons
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As you see, the assets of Java are 2.5 times more numerous than the shortcomings. Besides, the cons of Java can be essentially offset and the pros drastically augmented by leveraging specialized tools.
Java development tools
Here are the top seven Java tools that developers make extensive use.
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This SaaS monitoring solution enables tracking the performance of Java apps in real-time via application dependency maps and no-sweat debugging and error elimination across microservices and distributed architecture.
It is a superb open-source testing tool. JUnit supports writing and running tests, offers annotations to choose and identify testing methods, and provides assertions for testing expected results.
This is another Java testing tool. It is honed for gauging the percentage of code accessed by tests. It allows to produce HTML or XML reports, manifests the percentage of lines for each class and the entire solution, and sifts out irrelevant packages.
This is a universally praised IDE employed for desktop, web, and mobile apps that plays well with any operating system. Thanks to it, you can swiftly build UI, write and edit code, and administer efficient project management.
As you can guess from its name, this open-source tool is leveraged for caching to keep the apps’ footprint as small as possible. Ehcache is easily integrated with multiple libraries and frameworks and can be scaled to hundreds of caches to be used.
Oracle J developer
This free IDE is highly instrumental in the full-cycle building of service-oriented architecture. Thanks to it, you can specify configuration classes for holding metadata and create and edit Web Socket annotations of Java classes.
This is a comprehensive and extremely customizable Java development environment containing multiple modeling and testing tools as well as development frameworks, which makes it remarkably suitable for implementing JEE projects. It excels at model-driven development, integrates smoothly with JUnit, and furnishes complete detailed reports.
Should you use Java for your project: The verdict
There is no definite answer to this poser. Your ultimate choice crucially depends on the type of project you want to implement. Naturally, Java is flexible and powerful enough to be utilized for most software-building endeavors. To make doubly sure, you should apply for professional advice. The seasoned mavens of DICEUS will not only consult you on this but also develop a Java-based solution of any complexity that will impress you with high quality of execution and a moderate price tag.
FAQ: Pros and cons of Java
Why is Java so popular?
It has a thirty-year history behind it, during which Java has established itself as a leader in the programming realm used for creating software solutions of all kinds.
Which is not an advantage of Java?
Performance. It is slower than that of the native languages because Java has to be translated from a human-like sign system into computer code.
Could Java be the most popular programming language?
It was a couple of decades ago. Now it is outranked by younger products of this type but still holds among the top six most used programming languages among professionals.
Why is Java bad?
It is not bad. It has its shortcomings (speed of performance, verbose syntax, the absence of backups), which are more than offset by numerous fortes, though.
What is Java programming language used for?
It is better to ask what it is not used for. Employing Java, you can build all kinds of apps (desktop, web, and mobile), enterprise software, big data and IoT solutions, embedded systems, etc.
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