In general, a programming language is used to create a piece of software that tells a computer what actions to perform. It is the basic building block of software programs and there are many different languages that exist. In most cases, the programming language is broken down into syntax and semantics. The syntax deals with the form of the language and the semantics refers to the actions that are being described. There are literally hundreds of different languages, from the aptly named BASIC to more advanced models, such as C++ and Java.
The language of C++ has become one of the standards used by many programmers. It was designed by Bjarne Stroustrup and released to the public in 1983. The reason that it has become so popular is that it is well suited to many tasks, such as applications, device drivers, servers, and video games. This was the original goal for the development of the language and it has succeeded very well, eventually receiving ISO certification for computer use. However, some programmers have criticized C++, saying that it is more difficult to use than other languages.
Another programming language that has become popular in recent times is known as Java. Built by Sun Microsystems, the Java language uses much of the same syntax as C++, but has a more specific purpose of being used for web applications and stand alone software packages. With a large part of programming focus now being centered on web applications, the Java language is being frequently used in the creation of applets, which are simply software programs that exist as part of another application, with the common example being a web browser. The manifestation of Java is often found in browser games and videos. The criticism of Java are that it takes more computer resources to run a Java program or applet.