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Features of Java: Simple, Small and Object Oriented


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Features of Java: Simple, Small and Object Oriented



Java offers several benefits over other programming languages. It is small and simple, and it is object oriented. It may be treated as both a compiled and interpreted language. The executable generated by the Java compiler run on any platform that provides a JVM. The Java platform itself is robust and secure. Like many other languages, it supports multi threading, albeit in a much simpler form. And lastly, like a few other languages, it is dynamic in nature. We will now look at each of these features in more detail.


Small

As stated previously, the main motive behind creating Java was to develop a language for embedded systems programming. The executable code generated by Java is very small; typically, a Hello World application translates into just a few bytes. Compare this with similar code generated by a C++ compiler, which is easily a few kilobytes in size and additionally requires lot of memory for its runtime. The runtime environment required to run Java compiled code typically takes less than 1MB of memory space. Again, contrast this with the runtime required to run a C++ application, which involves not only hundreds of megabytes of code embedded in MFC (Microsoft Foundation Classes) or OWL (Borland’s Object Windowing Library) but also requires a sophisticated operating system and hardware to deploy it. Although this was true for both stand-alone and GUI-based applications during the previous decade, Microsoft’s current .NET platform provides architecture similar to Java and its executable, and run time environment requirements are comparable to those of Java’s.

Simple


Being object oriented, Java is simple to learn. It has often been said that people who never learned procedure-oriented languages such as C and Pascal will always leap-frog those who have when it comes to learning an object-oriented language. Those who have learned procedural-oriented languages typically find the migration to object-oriented languages difficult because it may require some undoing of what they have learned previously. Java is simple enough to be introduced as a first programming language in any computer science curriculum.

Object Oriented

The next important feature of Java is that it is object oriented. C++, which originated from C, allows global variable declarations, which means that the variables can be declared outside the scope of any object—to be more precise, outside of any class definition. This violates the rules of encapsulation—one of the important features of an object-oriented language. Java does not allow global declarations. Similarly, in Java, there are no structures and unions like in C and C++ that break the rules of object orientation by making all their members public by default. The absence of these features in the Java language has made it a better object-oriented language.


In Java, the entire code consists of only fully encapsulated classes. We’re probably wondering about the primitive data types. Are these, too, represented as objects in Java? To maintain efficiency, Java declares primitive data types as non-objects; however, it also provides wrapper classes for these primitive data types should we prefer to use objects holding the primitive data type items.


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