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Computer Languages – High Level vs Low Level

Programming Languages And Their Uses

Do you know computers also need languages to communicate like we humans?

Languages that computers understand are known as computer languages.

Whenever we want to give instructions to computers to do a job, it’s given in these languages. The computer languages are broadly classified into two types – High Level languages and Low Level languages.

You might now ask why there are two categories of languages?

A computer understands only the language of 0s and 1s and for humans it is difficult to write instructions in that form, hence there are two types of computer languages.

First let me explain what are High Level languages.

When we think about computer programmers, we are probably thinking about people who write in high level programming languages. The programs in high level languages are written in a form that is close to our human language (English), enabling a programmer to just focus on the problem being solved. No particular knowledge of the hardware is needed  as high level languages create programs that are portable and not tied to a particular computer. 

These programmer friendly languages are called “High Level” as they are far removed from the machine code instructions understood by the computer. Examples of such languages include: C++, Java, Pascal, Python.

Now coming to Low Level Languages. 

These languages are used to write programs that relate to the specific architecture and hardware of a particular type of computer. These languages are closer to the native language of a computer (binary language – language of 0s and 1s), making them harder for programmers to understand. Examples of low level languages are Assembly languages, Machine Code.

Few programmers write programs in low level languages, but it is still used for developing code for specialist hardware, such as device drivers.

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