What is JAVA ?
Java is a programming language in the tradition of C and C++. As a result, if you have any experience with C or C++, you'll find yourself in familiar territory often as you learn the various features of Java. However, Java differs from other programming languages in a couple of significant ways. The following sections describe the most important differences.
One of the main reasons Java is so popular is its platform independence, which means that Java programs can be run on many different types of computers. A Java program runs on any computer with a Java Runtime Environment, also known as a JRE, installed. A JRE is available for almost every type of computer — PCs running Windows, Macintosh computers, Unix or Linux computers, huge mainframe computers, and even cell phones.
Java is inherently object-oriented, which means that Java programs are made up of programming elements called objects. Simply put, an object is a programming entity that represents either some real-world object or an abstract concept. All objects have two basic characteristics:
Classes are closely related to objects. A class is the program code you write to create objects. The class describes the data and methods that define the object's state and behavior. Then, when the program executes, classes are used to create objects.
For example, suppose you're writing a payroll program. This program needs objects to represent the company's employees. So, the program includes a class (probably named Employee) that defines the data and methods for each Employee object. Then, when your program runs, it uses this class to create an object for each of your company's employees.
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