It's no surprise that those who've just started learning their first programming language always have a lot of questions. But trust me, if you simply have patience and study Java every day, your understanding will quickly grow.
In order to begin writing a program in Java, you first need to configure your software environment. And after that you will be able to write your first Java program.
To do this, you need to download and install on your computer:
JDK (The Java Development Kit) is a kit for Java applications developers. To better understand what JDK consists of, let’s look at the diagram below.
As is clear from the diagram above, JDK consists of:
- javac compiler
- full range of Java libraries
- JRE (the Java Runtime Environment)
JRE consists of:
- JVM (Java Virtual Machine)
- minimum range of Java libraries
Javac compiler. Programs are transferred from human-readable code to code which is read by JVM (Java Virtual Machine). We talked about the compiler operation principle in the “Why is the Java language so popular?” article.
Full range of Java libraries is a tested code which is used by programmers in their programs. You can learn more about libraries from our article “What is the Java Class Library?”
JRE (the Java Runtime Environment) is the minimum implementation of virtual appliance which is required for the execution of Java-based applications without a compiler or other development tools. In other words, JRE is sufficient for the execution of Java programs, but not for the developing of them.
IDE (Integrated Development Environment) is a tool designed for software development.
The most popular IDE's:
- JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA
Moreover, the first two – Eclipse and JetBrians IntelliJ IDEA – are the most popular among programmers. It's worth mentioning that there are mainly two camps of Java programmers:
- Vocal advocates of Eclipse
- Vocal advocates of JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA
Some maintain that Eclipse is the best integrated development environment, while others say the same of JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA. This debate is one of the hottest topics of discussion. Many articles have already been written with arguments in favor of one or the other…in time you will make your choice. In the meantime, you just need to install:
- either Eclipse
- or JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA
Eclipse is a free IDE developed by IBM. It is written in Java.
JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA. Both free and paid versions are available. It was developed in January 2001 by the company JetBrains.
Well, it’s time to start the software environment configuration. Below you will find links with detailed instructions. Simply choose your computer's operating system and then click on the link!