In recent years, blockchain has been quite the talk of the town among renowned industry leaders as well as the common man. To most, it was a concept first introduced by the popularity of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin.
Blockchain was first introduced by a group of individuals under the name Satoshi Nakamoto in their paper “Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer electronic cash system” in 2008.
As the name suggests, blockchain technology digitally stores transactional records in the form of information blocks that are connected to each other like nodes and secured with cryptography.
Every transaction added to this digital ledger is authorized by a digital signature from the owner that safeguards it from any sort of tampering. This form of storing transactional information prevents anyone from modifying or hacking the data, ensuring transparency as well as security.
The Blockchain industry was valued at 4.9 billion USD by the end of 2021 and is forecasted to reach nearly 67 billion USD by the year 2026. From these figures alone, we can estimate the immense growth and potential of programming in the blockchain industry.
For software engineers planning to venture into blockchain programming, here are the top 7 programming languages that every blockchain engineer should know:
Java is one of the most prominent programming languages in the software industry. It was discovered in 1995 by James Gosling and has become the most preferred language for backend development by professional mobile app designers across the world.
This language is derived from C-syntax and is one of the most prominent blockchain programming languages. It supports Application Programming Interface (API), Object-Oriented Programming (OOP), and Portability quite abundantly.
- Portability: Java supports Write Once, Run Anywhere (WORA) functionality, which allows developers to port it to different platforms.
- Secure Interface: Java avoids using explicit pointers, which reduces a security threat and allows developers to define access rules for a class.
- Developer-Friendly: Java has ample libraries and offers ease of memory cleaning.
- Famous examples of blockchains that are written using Java are – Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric, and NEO
C++ is a language that even school students could be familiar with. It is immensely popular throughout the software industry, and blockchain is no exception. C++ was discovered by Bjarne Stroustrup in 1985.
There are different features of OOP in C++ that allow blockchain developers to easily mold different data and functions into a single module, and that makes it a popular choice for developers.
- Multiple Capabilities: C++ has multiple capabilities like multi-threading, run-time polymorphism, and excellent memory control.
- Developer-Friendly: C++ is easy to read and understand. It also allows developers the option to move semantics for copying data.
- Fast and Powerful: It has a faster execution time than Java.
- Excellent for Cryptocurrency: C++ is widely used in creating cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Stellar, and Ripple, to name a few.
Python is the best programming language to learn for blockchain freshers as it has comparatively shortcodes and is easier to use. It was initially designed by Guido Van Rossum in 1991 and is widely used in dApps and Internet of Things (IoT) development.
- Open-source Language: Python is an open-source language, which makes it ideal for blockchain developers.
- Developer-Friendly: Python executes programs line by line, which makes it easy to detect errors and debug them.
- Prototyping: Python allows developers to prototype their ideas without requiring any long-winded coding.
- Extensive Library: Python, being open-source, has a lot of free resources like plug-ins and an extensive library for almost any problem.
- Some top examples of blockchains using Python are Ethereum, Steem, and Hyperledger Fabric.
Due to its popularity, it offers a lot of benefits to blockchain developers, especially in terms of scalability, as it is present and installed in most software systems.
Solidity was first proposed by British software engineer Gavin Wood in 2014 and later developed by Ethereum, a decentralized blockchain operating platform. It is one of the fastest-growing programming languages being used in blockchain technology.
Since the language was created keeping in mind blockchain technology, it is a language that every aspiring blockchain developer should learn. The language suitably has easy solutions for most problems faced in developing blockchain technology.
- Statically Typed Programming: Solidity provides a more flexible and stable environment for the coding of smart contracts.
- High Accuracy: Solidity boasts precise accuracy. It acts as a secure and reliable medium for different sources to frame smart contracts.
- Solidity is used by blockchain platforms such as Ethereum, Monax, and Tendermint.
Developed by Rachelle‘O Connor in 2017, Simplicity is highly focused on decreasing the low-level understanding of cryptocurrencies. It is a high-level blockchain programming language that was formed for smart contracts.
Simplicity increases the work capacity of blockchain developers as it hides low-level factors from the Bitcoin script and creates a faster development period.
- Secure and Reliable—Simplicity overcomes the limitations of other blockchain languages and creates secure and reliable smart contracts.
- Compatible with the Elements Platform, an open-source blockchain platform.
Also referred to as the Go language, this programming language is excellent for creating fast and efficient blockchain applications. It is typed statically and is preferred by many software developers globally due to its rapid and developer-friendly features.
- Organized Typing: The syntax in the Go language is organized and enhances performance, such as generics, annotations, classes, and inheritance.
- Static Typing: As it has static typing, many errors can be eliminated and debugged easily during the web application building process.
- Uncomplicated: As mentioned, the Go language is built for smooth and efficient blockchain development, so it is quite easy to learn.
- Go-Ethereum and Hyperledger Fabric are the most popular blockchain developments by Golang.
The abovementioned programming languages are the most prominent gateways for talented developers to enter the world of blockchain programming. Each language mentioned in this article has different pros and cons and the potential for developing different forms of blockchain solutions.
To know which language is best for which is something that a developer will learn over time with plenty of experience in dealing with different blockchain technologies and platforms.