The 5 best programming languages for AI development

Which programming language should you pick for your machine learning or deep learning project? These are your best options

The 5 best programming languages for AI development
Scott Eklund/Red Box Pictures via Microsoft

AI (artificial intelligence) opens up a world of possibilities for application developers. By taking advantage of machine learning or deep learning, you could produce far better user profiles, personalization, and recommendations, or incorporate smarter search, a voice interface, or intelligent assistance, or improve your app any number of other ways. You could even build applications that see, hear, and react.

Which programming language should you learn to plumb the depths of AI? You’ll want a language with many good machine learning and deep learning libraries, of course. It should also feature good runtime performance, good tools support, a large community of programmers, and a healthy ecosystem of supporting packages. That still leaves plenty of good options. 

Here are my picks for the five best programming languages for AI development, along with three honorable mentions. Some of these languages are on the rise, while others seem to be slipping. Come back in a few months, and you might find these rankings have changed.   

1. Python

At number one, it’s Python. How could it be anything else, really? While there are maddening things about Python—the whitespacing, the massive split between Python 2.x and Python 3.x, the five different packaging systems that are all broken in different ways—if you’re doing AI work, you almost certainly will be using Python at some point.

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