JavaScript – How is it Different from Java?

Many people tend to confuse Java and JavaScript to be the same. While both are object oriented programming or OOP languages, they are not entirely similar. The only commonality between these two languages is the syntax. For a better understanding of how these two languages differ, here is a note on their origins, features and uses.


Java is an OOP or object oriented programming language created by James Gosling, from Sun Microsystems. Java programing is used for designing and developing interactive web pages and standalone applications. JavaScript is a scripting language, and not the same as Java. JavaScript was created by Brendan Eich of Netscape Inc. and does not belong to the Java platform. It was initially called Livescript. As it is also an OOP, it is relatively similar to Java.

When compared to Java, JavaScript has simpler commands that are easier to understand, even by the average programmer.

Difference in Features

Java and JavaScript also differ significantly in terms of their features.

Firstly, Java is easy to use and offers more flexibility for developing software applications due to its object oriented approach. The programming language combines some of the best properties of other programming languages, which makes it a superior OOP programming language. Also, Java code is not dependent on the platform, which means that you can write the code in Java on any platform of your choice and then use it on any other platform. You can also access and execute the Java code remotely, without compromising on the security.

JavaScript provides browser support without the need to install a flash plugin. It is also flexible in the sense that it allows the user to change or modify the web page structures in runtime, which makes it an ideal tool for developing and modifying attractive and interactive web pages. JavaScript is easier to learn and use, which makes it a great platform to begin with, if you wish to learn about computer programming. To use JavaScript, on just needs a browser along with a text editor.

Difference in Usage

Java and JavaScript were developed by two different companies and were meant for different audience altogether.

As mentioned before, Java is a full-fledged OOP programming language and has objects of its own. Java objects are used for developing UIs that appear in Java web browsers or applets or in individual (standalone) Java applications. Java has combined the five best features of other programming languages to create highly interactive web pages.

Java is mostly used for online messaging applications, online banking, games, online calculators, credit card processing and more. A number of social networking sites are also highly dependent on Java programming. In simple words, Java is extensively used for creating millions of apps worldwide and automating online processes.

Like Java, JavaScript is used for making the web pages interactive, but it cannot be used for developing standalone apps. JavaScript typically converts a static page into an interactive one, by adding behavior to it. It allows you to add forms, animations, automated responses to user behavior on the site. It also lets you load new scripts, images, text etc. without having to redo the entire page. On the whole, JavaScript allows you to improve the user experience on a website.