Features of JAVA
The main objective of Java programming language creation was to make it portable, simple and secure programming language. Apart from this, there are also some awesome features which play important role in the popularity of this language. The features of Java are also known as java buzzwords.
A list of most important features of Java language are given below.
- Platform independent
- Architecture neutral
- High Performance
Java is very easy to learn and its syntax is simple, clean and easy to understand. According to Sun, Java language is a simple programming language because:
- Java syntax is based on C++ (so easier for programmers to learn it after C++).
- Java has removed many confusing and rarely-used features e.g. explicit pointers, operator overloading etc.
- There is no need to remove unreferenced objects because there is Automatic Garbage Collection in java.
Java is object-oriented programming language. Everything in Java is an object. Object-oriented means we organize our software as a combination of different types of objects that incorporates both data and behaviour.
Object-oriented programming (OOPs) is a methodology that simplifies software development and maintenance by providing some rules.
Basic concepts of OOPs are:
Java is platform independent because it is different from other languages like C, C++ etc. which are compiled into platform specific machines while Java is a write once, run anywhere language. A platform is the hardware or software environment in which a program runs.
There are two types of platforms software-based and hardware-based. Java provides software-based platform.
The Java platform differs from most other platforms in the sense that it is a software-based platform that runs on the top of other hardware-based platforms. It has two components:
- Runtime Environment
- API(Application Programming Interface)
Java code can be run on multiple platforms e.g. Windows, Linux, Sun Solaris, Mac/OS etc. Java code is compiled by the compiler and converted into bytecode. This bytecode is a platform-independent code because it can be run on multiple platforms i.e. Write Once and Run Anywhere(WORA).
Java is best known for its security. With Java, we can develop virus-free systems. Java is secured because:
- No explicit pointer
- Java Programs run inside virtual machine sandbox
- Classloader: Classloader in Java is a part of the Java Runtime Environment(JRE) which is used to dynamically load Java classes into the Java Virtual Machine. It adds security by separating the package for the classes of the local file system from those that are imported from network sources.
- Bytecode Verifier: It checks the code fragments for illegal code that can violate access right to objects.
- Security Manager: It determines what resources a class can access such as reading and writing to the local disk.
These security are provided by java language. Some security can also be provided by application developer through SSL, JAAS, Cryptography etc.
Robust simply means strong. Java is robust because:
- It uses strong memory management.
- There are lack of pointers that avoids security problems.
- There is automatic garbage collection in java which runs on the Java Virtual Machine to get rid of objects which are not being used by a Java application anymore.
- There is exception handling and type checking mechanism in java. All these points makes java robust.
Java is architecture neutral because there is no implementation dependent features e.g. size of primitive types is fixed.
In C programming, int data type occupies 2 bytes of memory for 32-bit architecture and 4 bytes of memory for 64-bit architecture. But in java, it occupies 4 bytes of memory for both 32 and 64 bit architectures.
Java is portable because it facilitates you to carry the java bytecode to any platform. It doesn’t require any type of implementation.
Java is faster than other traditional interpreted programming languages because Java bytecode is “close” to native code. It is still a little bit slower than a compiled language (e.g. C++). Java is an interpreted language that is why it is slower than compiled languages e.g. C, C++ etc.
Java is distributed because it facilitates users to create distributed applications in java. RMI and EJB are used for creating distributed applications. This feature of Java makes us able to access files by calling the methods from any machine on the internet.
A thread is like a separate program, executing concurrently. We can write Java programs that deal with many tasks at once by defining multiple threads. The main advantage of multi-threading is that it doesn’t occupy memory for each thread. It shares a common memory area. Threads are important for multi-media, Web applications etc.
Java is a dynamic language. It supports dynamic loading of classes. It means classes are loaded on demand. It also supports functions from its native languages i.e. C and C++.
Java supports dynamic compilation and automatic memory management (garbage collection)
C++ vs Java
|Platform-independent||C++ is platform-dependent.||Java is platform-independent.|
|Mainly used for||C++ is mainly used for system programming.||Java is mainly used for application programming. It is widely used in window, web-based, enterprise and mobile applications.|
|Design Goal||C++ was designed for systems and applications programming. It was an extension of C programming language.||Java was designed and created as an interpreter for printing systems but later extended as a support network computing. It was designed with a goal of being easy to use and accessible to a wider audience.|
|Goto||C++ supports goto statement.||Java doesn’t support goto statement.|
|Multiple inheritance||C++ supports multiple inheritance.||Java doesn’t support multiple inheritance through class. It can be achieved by interfaces in java.|
|Operator Overloading||C++ supports operator overloading.||Java doesn’t support operator overloading.|
|Pointers||C++ supports pointers. You can write pointer program in C++.||Java supports pointer internally. But you can’t write the pointer program in java. It means java has restricted pointer support in java.|
|Compiler and Interpreter||C++ uses compiler only. C++ is compiled and run using compiler which converts source code into machine code so, C++ is platform dependent.||Java uses compiler and interpreter both. Java source code is converted into byte code at compilation time. The interpreter executes this byte code at run time and produces output. Java is interpreted that is why it is platform independent.|
|Call by Value and Call by reference||C++ supports both call by value and call by reference.||Java supports call by value only. There is no call by reference in java.|
|Structure and Union||C++ supports structures and unions.||Java doesn’t support structures and unions.|
|Thread Support||C++ doesn’t have built-in support for threads. It relies on third-party libraries for thread support.||Java has built-in thread support.|