One of the main goals that any successful programmer seeks to achieve is to write simple programs that are free of complexity, programs that a computer can understand, as well as any other programmer who deals with the codes of this program.
This is the main reason why many experts advise beginners in the world of programming to learn different types of programming, which are called (Programming Paradigms).
In this article, we will explain the different programming styles in a simple way that anyone can understand, regardless of their level of programming.
I will also answer some questions that may be on your mind, such as:
Why should I learn about Programming Paradigms?
What is the relationship between programming patterns and programming languages?
How do I learn which type of programming is right for me?
You will also find many practical examples so that the idea becomes clear to you... This is our habit at Seo7u. We always try to simplify the information for the reader.
Before we begin, I would like to point out the following:
This article is a large part of a comprehensive series on coding that we offer on Seo7u for all young people, in order to help them learn coding while providing all the information and resources they need in a simple and practical way.
You will find me referring to these guides during and at the end of the article... That is why I ask you to read the entire article to the end in order to benefit from all the information and sources I have provided for you.
Now let's start from the beginning. Before we talk about the types of programming, we must talk about the programming itself.
What is programming?
Programming is the process of building and designing computer programs that any computer can understand in order to perform specific tasks—such as arithmetic, drawing, or memorizing and storing information.
Programming is one of the branches of computer science, which is included in all its use in scientific life, the plane, the car, banking services, and anything that works on the Internet is built and defined using programming.
Frankly, there are many terms and explanations for programming, but the thing I want you to know is that programming is a logical method that we rely on to solve problems using the computer.
We have prepared a comprehensive guide on programming entitled “What is Programming”, in which you will find:
A simple and detailed practical explanation of programming.
Explain the meaning of programming languages and how they originated with practical examples.
An explanation of the most important terms in the programming world such as Syntax and others.
A simplified explanation of the meaning of the word “program” and the difference between it and the algorithm.
A simplified explanation of the programmer's job in general.
That is why I advise you to read this guide first if you are new to the world of programming, but if you know what you are looking for specifically, which are the types or patterns of programming, then let us continue our conversation about them.
Programming languages classification
If you know the meaning of programming languages, and how they originated, you will certainly know that programming languages appeared in order to reduce humans from dealing with machine language directly.
This is why one of the most popular classifications of programming languages is:
Low Level Languages: These are languages that are very close to the language of machines.
(High Level Languages): These are languages that move away from the language of machines and approach our normal language, which is the most common now, and most programmers rely on them for their jobs every day.
But this classification is not what I mean here… Let me explain to you more when I ask you “What is a programming language?” What exactly do they represent? .
If you think carefully about the answers to these questions, you will discover that programming languages are programs in themselves, programs that were developed to solve computer communication problems.
And programs are logical steps arranged to solve a specific problem using the computer - just as every person thinks about solving problems according to his method and experience…
For example, there are people who like to control everything and give exact instructions to solve any problem at once, and there are others who disassemble the problem into parts to simplify the solution process.
Programmers also think about solving problems in a certain way or style... hence the (Programming Paradigms) appeared.
That is why programming languages are classified according to the method they depend on in solving problems... This is the classification of programming languages I mean here.
For example, there are functional programming languages and object-oriented programming languages… Don't worry you'll understand what I mean by that when you complete this article, but before that you might ask yourself an important question.
The question is, “Why am I telling you all this? “Why am I talking to you about classifications of programming languages and their true meaning… You will find the answer in the next item?”.
Why should you learn about the types of programming?
When you get to know the different types of programming, and know the pattern on which the programming language you use depends, you will find yourself understanding it deeply, and this makes you master it.
Let me give you an example, do you remember your days in school and the teacher is explaining to you the scientific material from the textbook… Imagine that the teacher is the author of the textbook itself.
Then this author will not only explain the scientific material to you, but will explain to you its arrangement, why this information was placed in the first chapter and not the third chapter, it will explain to you the importance of everything you learn and how you can benefit from it afterwards.
The same applies to programming languages, when you learn the programming style that a language depends on, you will feel that you are sitting with the programmer who developed the language itself.
You will find yourself understanding every line of code you type, such as:
Why do we use ( Function ) here?
Why should you, in the first step, define a specific Variable?
Why do we rely here on (Logic Loops)?
And other questions that you will only know the answer to when you understand well the type of programming that your language depends on... Then you will find yourself understanding the codes very quickly.
At this moment, you will become a real programmer who understands what he is doing, and not just someone who memorizes the use of some code, and depends on copying and pasting, but you will find yourself standing on solid ground.
And when you get to know the rest of the programming patterns and understand how they work, it will be very easy for you to learn any programming language you want in record time without any trouble.
This is the importance of learning the types of electronic programming, which is why I talked to you earlier about the classification of programming languages that depends on these types.
Now it's time for us to talk about electronic programming patterns with a simple explanation that anyone can understand.
Types of ( Programming paradigms )
Programming types are divided into two main types, in each type there are some types of programming that have some additional characteristics from the main type.
If you look at the main image for this article, you will find that these main types are:
a) Imperative programming paradigm
If you search for the meaning of the word (imperative), you will find that it means the imperative command or duty that must be carried out, and if you dig deeper, you will find that it is derived from the Latin word (impero), which is the same word from which the word emperor is derived.
As is the custom of emperors and leaders; They give precise and clear instructions... they like to tell those who follow them exactly what to do step by step.
For example, look at the following example, written in C, which aims to add the numbers from 1 to 10 and then write the result:
int sum = 0;
sum += 1;
sum += 2;
sum += 3;
sum += 4;
sum += 5;
sum += 6;
sum += 7;
sum += 8;
sum += 9;
sum += 10;
printf(“The sum is: %d\n”, sum);
The previous steps, if you try them yourself, will give the result 55, which is really the correct answer... But have you carefully considered the number of steps and the way they are written? If you do, you will find that we have told the computer to do the addition step by step in a very detailed way.
We have defined a variable (Sum) and given it a value of zero, then took this variable and combined it with the number 1 so that the new result becomes the value of this variable... Then they took this variable and combined it with the number 2 so that the result becomes the new value of the variable... Then with the number 3, and the number 4 all the way to number 10.
This programming system may be somewhat easy, but it has its drawbacks:
The inability to reuse the code, each time you will need to do the same process, you will have to repeat the same steps.
Ease of making mistakes.
This style is less efficient and productive than other programming styles.
The imperative programming style is old because it somewhat mimics the way a computer works, which is why older programming languages like BASIC and C are based on it.
Now let's talk about programming patterns that have the same character as imperative programming in executing tasks but with some additional properties.
1. Procedural programming paradigm
Procedural programming represents the first development of imperative programming, and the difference between them is that procedural programming divides commands into a set of actions so that the execution process is faster.
Let's look at the same example as before and try to add the numbers from 1 to 10 in C again:
int sum = 0;
int i =0;
sum += i;
printf(“The sum is: %d\n”, sum);
As you can see, this time we made a new step-by-step procedure, we introduced the variable i and its value from 1 to 10 using For and combined the variable Sum with i several times until we got 55.
This is the procedural programming that you find used in:
C . language
2. Object-oriented programming paradigm
Object-oriented programming - also called object-oriented programming - is one of the most widely used and somewhat complex programming styles today.
In this type of programming, the data you deal with is defined as objects with categories so that you can make relationships between each object and another to get a certain result.
Suppose, for example, that you want to deal with the data of some customers from more than one country, each category of customers (customers from the United States of America, for example), we will put them in a specific category.
We will identify the objects related to each category, such as (age - gender - name - bank balance - and others), and then we will link these purposes, collect them, or make a census of them as we want.
This is the main concept of object-oriented programming that I want you to understand now, I don't want to go any further, because explaining this pattern in detail needs comprehensive guides.
If you want to delve into this important pattern that you find in many programming languages such as:
Objective-C . language
Ruby . language
I advise you to read the book (Head First Object-Oriented Analysis and Design), as it is one of the best sources I have found that explains this programming style.
Object-oriented programming is very important and has many advantages, including:
You can easily reuse your codes.
When you specify all the components you are dealing with, this makes your applications more secure.
Ease of cooperation between more than one programmer on the same project because most of the code is clear and defined in an easy to understand manner.
That is why I strongly advise you to go deeper into learning this type of electronic programming, especially if you are familiar with one of the programming languages that depend on it.
3. Parallel processing approach
Parallel processing approach is a type of programming in which tasks are divided into more than one data processor (processor) in the same computer or server.
In the computers that most of us use today, one processor contains more than one core, or in other words we can consider that one computer contains a number of processors equal to the number of cores in it.
Programmers are trying to use these capabilities to perform complex, time-consuming operations faster and more efficiently, which is why the parallel processing method has appeared.
Programming languages that can rely on this pattern are:
C . language
This pattern is commonly used by programmers who work in the field of developing operating systems and rather complex computer programs.
b) Declarative programming paradigm
The declarative programming style is a programming style that relies on using a computer logically to solve various problems, unlike imperative programming.
As we talked about previously in imperative programming, you tell the computer how to carry out a specific task step by step... As for declarative programming, all you have to do is tell the computer a specific task to perform without the need for steps.
For example, when we wanted the computer to collect numbers from 1 to 10, we identified clear steps for it to take (collect 0 +1, then use the output +2, then use the output +3 and so on).
In declarative programming, you tell the computer (add 1 to 10) and do that without specifying the steps.
Declarative programming is used in programming languages that deal with data and logical reasoning such as Prolog and SQL.
Now let's talk about programming patterns that have the same character as declarative programming in executing tasks, but with some additional properties.
1. Logic programming paradigm
Logical programming is a programming method that deals with facts and information that we give to the computer in order to extract certain results that we use later.
For example, if we have a table of examination results for a group of students, and we specify the passing score as 40 out of 50, then the program will extract the name of each student with a score greater than 40, and put a successful mark in front of him and with the rest of the students he will put a failing mark.
Boolean programming is used in some programming languages like Prolog and Alice, which probably not many programmers use at the moment.
2. Functional programming paradigm
Functional programming is one example of declarative programming, which is based on the idea of ( Functions ) that each function performs a specific function.
The programmer can use a specific function that has specific functions (for example, there is a function if we give it a set of numbers that arrange them from largest to smallest)
The programmer can also define new functions that have functions that he defines to do certain tasks - for example, you can define a function that converts temperatures in Fahrenheit to Celsius, which can be used within the application you write to automatically convert numbers and use it in the rest of the steps.
Functional programming is often used in somewhat complex mathematical or logical operations, and is therefore very popular.
3. Database processing approach
The data processing approach is a programming style that depends on dealing with data directly, and does not depend on a set of steps or procedures like the programming patterns we presented earlier.
Imagine that the data you are dealing with is a set of tables and cells (like Excel), you define them and then deal with them by adding, modifying, clearing and other simple commands.
The most famous programming language that depends on this style is SQL, which is used to deal with different databases, and which most programmers in various disciplines rely on.
How to learn the types of programming that suit your interests
As I mentioned earlier, learning the programming pattern that depends on the programming language that you use is often necessary, especially if you want to become a proficient programmer.
My advice to you is to first learn the programming language, and how you can use it, and then study the programming style that depends on it, in this way, you will learn faster and review everything you have learned and your understanding will become more profound, especially with the continuous application, review and analysis of the codes that you wrote previously.
Let me now put in front of you a set of resources and guides that we have prepared on the Seo7u platform, in which you will find everything you need to learn programming and its different types:
What is Programming: A comprehensive guide as an introduction to understanding the world of programming.
The Most Popular Programming Languages: A comprehensive guide to the most important and most popular programming languages and how to use each one.
Best books to learn programming: A great selection of the best books from the best authors in the field.
Best Programming Sites: Here you will find a collection of educational sites, training platforms, and communities of programmers that will help you learn different types of programming and their languages, as well as a lot of tips and instructions.
The best YouTube channels to learn programming: (Your trusted guide to learning programming through YouTube)
What is the best programming language for beginners?: With it, you will get rid of the confusion in choosing which programming language to start with.
Best programming courses for beginners: a guide that contains the best resources to learn programming in every discipline (web development - mobile application development - game development - data science and artificial intelligence).
This is in contrast to the specialized guides that we are currently working on in various fields of programming and computer science, you have to follow us constantly so that you do not miss any new ones.
Read also: What are the fields of computer science?
In the end, I hope that you benefited from this article about the types of programming, and I hope to meet you soon.