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Computer programming languages and its types

Learn: Computer programming languages and its type - Low Level Computer programming languages (Binary & Assembly) and High Level programming languages.

This is very basic tutorial for computer programming language learners, if you are Learning computer programming language like C, C++, Java or any other such programme, then you should know about the computer programming language.

Let's understand about the language first...

What is a language?

Language is the medium of communication to share ideas, opinion with each other. For an example, if we want to communicate with someone, we need a language it may be English, Hindi, Spanish or another language. But you need at least one language to communicate with someone (human/person).

What is a programming language?

To communicate with a person, you need a language. Same if you need to communicate with the computer, you need a programming language. Without any programming language you cannot communicate with the computer.

Thus, programming language is the medium of communication between you (a person) and a computer system. It is the set of some instructions written in a specific style (coding) to instruct the computer to do some specific task.

Types of computer programming languages

There are basically three types of computer programming languages, they are

  1. Low level programming languages
  2. High level programming languages
  3. Middle level programming languages

1) Low level programming languages

These are machine dependent programming languages such as Binary (Machine code) and Assembly language.

Since computer only understand the Binary language that means instructions in the form of 0’s and 1’s (Signals - that can be either High or Low), so these programming languages are the best way to give signals (Binary Instructions) to the computer directly.

Machine Code (Binary Language) does not need any interpreter or compiler to convert language in any form because computer understands these signals directly.

But, Assembly language needs to be converted in equivalent Binary code, so that computer can understand the instructions written in Assembly. Assembler is used to convert an assembly code to its equivalent Binary code.

The codes written in such kind of languages are difficult to write, read, edit and understand; the programs are not portable to any other computer system.

Low Level programming language programs are faster than High Level programming language programs as they have less keywords, symbols and no need (less need) to convert into Machine Code.

2) High level programming languages

These are the machine independent programming languages, which are easy to write, read, edit and understand.

The languages like Java, .Net, Pascal, COBOL, C++, C, C# and other (which are very popular now to develop user end applications). These languages come under the high level programming language category.

High level programming languages have some special keywords, functions and class libraries by using them we can easily build a program for the computer.

Computer does not understand program written in such languages directly, as I have written above that computer understands only Machine code. So, here programming translators are required to convert a high level program to its equivalent Machine code.

Programming translators such as Compilers and Interpreters are the system software’s which converts a program written in particular programming languages to its equivalent Machine code.

Here are the features of High Level programming languages

  • The programs are written in High Level programming languages and are independent that means a program written on a system can be run on another system.
  • Easy to understand - Since these programming languages have keywords, functions, class libraries (which are similar to English words) we can easily understand the meaning of particular term related to that programming language.
  • Easy to code, read and edit - The programs written in High Level programming languages are easy to code, read and edit. Even we can edit programs written by other programmers easily by having little knowledge of that programming language.
  • Since, High Level language programs are slower than Low level language programs; still these programming languages are popular to develop User End Applications.

Middle Level programming language

Since, there is no such category of computer programming languages, but the programming languages that have features of low level and high level programming languages come under this category.

Hence, we can say that the programming languages which have features of Low Level as well as High Level programming languages known as "Middle Level" programming language.

C programming languages is the best example of Low Level Programming languages as it has features of low level and high level programming languages both.

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