The human mind is judgmental by nature so whenever it gets to choose one thing among many then it compares various features of items and then chooses one which is closer to its requirement. For example, a student who is pursuing his engineering degree of Information Technology or Computer Science often asks his seniors which language he should choose Java, C#, C++ or C to make a good career with it.
When two languages come in the market in short interval of time then professionals start comparing them on the basis of syntax, feature, ease of use and environment supported. Perl is older than Python but not so much. Perl was developed to deal with text process that is related to reporting stuff at that time on UNIX machine while Python was a result of a successor of programming language ABC.
Both the languages have following features in common:
- Both were developed to target UNIX machine.
- Both are interpreted not compiled.
- Both are OO (Object oriented) but Python is ahead of Perl when we talk about OOPs.
- Both are open source in nature and you can modify it according to your need.
- Both have vast community support over the internet.
Key Differences Between Perl vs Python
Despite having many similarities, both Perl and Python have many differences as well; we will look into these difference between Perl and Python in details:
1. Perl, we can say “Practical Extraction and Report Language” but it is not official on the other hand Python is named after famous artist of his time “Monty Python”.
2. Perl was invented by Larry Wall in 1987 while Python by Guido van Rossum in 1989.
3.Python: First of all there is only one way to do get things done but if there is another way too then it will replace the existing.
For example: in Python 2.0 to print message command is as:
Print “Hi this is a text message from Python 2.0”
But when they introduced Python 3.0 then the same thing can be done as
Print(“Hi this is a text message from Python 3.0”)
Perl: If there is another way to do the thing then include it also i.e. not to replace existing but to add new way as well. (For example: See way to write if statement in comparison section)
4. Perl is considered for text processing which helps in reporting while Python is now a general purpose language and currently being used in many fields.
Perl vs Python (Comparison Table)
Following is the Comparison table between Perl vs Python
|Developer||Developed by Apple Inc||Linus Torvalds (main developer) and developer community worldwide.|
|License||Need to purchase license||Open source|
|Device Compatibility||Supports only those devices which are developed by Apple Corporation only but can be run on other by doing some hack.||Linux is supported by many devices and quite compatible for from low configuration devices to supercomputers|
|Customization||Restricted and limited options are available.||Fully customizable with many options. You can make it according to your need if you know Linux script.|
|Kernel||Based on UNIX||Not exactly UNIX but UNIX Like|
|Supported By||Apple Inc.||Developer Community worldwide|
|User-friendly||Very much user-friendly||Less user-friendly in comparison to OS X.|
|Cost||Free to use and a user is not bound to pay.|
|Uses||Only in those devices or application which is developed by Apple Inc.||Believe me or not but you anyhow have uses the devices those are running Linux.|
Conclusion – Perl vs Python
We saw some of the major differences between Perl and Python the two languages but many of us believe that everything has its own advantages and disadvantages and we do not go black and white. When you are familiar with any language, have earned a lot then that becomes easy for you.
As we can say Perl provides you to include different way to do the things and on the other hand Python restrict you but in easier way and this is the reason Python is gaining popularity in all aspect while Perl is still in use and still has vast community support but when we see the things worldwide we found Python is dominating with vast number of packages that supports in all computing environment.
So can we say Perl is useless nowadays? The answer is No. Perl is still in use in many of the Linux supporting systems in a real-time scenario where we require dealing with text processing a lot. But when you ask me for career perspective then I will suggest going ahead with Python because it is being used in many modern technologies like Machine Learning and Data Science field, the reason for this is simplicity and ease of use.