Opinionated guide to the programming languages that I have been using professionally:
- x86 machine code is the native language of most computers (laptops, servers, …; not tablets, phones nor devices). It is a messy set of extensions to an originally 16bit CISC CPU, – ugly, but very useful to know, as that makes you aware of the capabilities of the machines.
- C is the classical system programming language. The language is quite small, and nice. It misses some expressiveness, but you get a good access to the core machine.
- Java is a friendlier, and safer language than C++. It looks a lot like object-oriented C++, similar to the way that a cat looks like a tiger. It is an industrial language with a good virtual machine and decent performance.
- Php is a hack for making programmable webpages, – I still try to avoid it, even though it has improved over time. Useful for web.
- Python has a nice focus on code readability and is generally a good scripting language, trading off performance and typing.