Why java and javascript have similar names?

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Java and JavaScript are two popular programming languages that are often confused due to their similar names. While they share some similarities, they are fundamentally different in terms of purpose, syntax, and application. In this article, we will explore why Java and JavaScript have similar names and clarify the distinctions between the two languages.

Java and JavaScript: Origins and Naming

Origins: Despite their similar names, Java and JavaScript have different origins and were developed by different companies. Java was created by James Gosling and his team at Sun Microsystems in the mid-1990s. It was designed as a general-purpose programming language for building robust and portable applications. On the other hand, JavaScript was developed by Brendan Eich at Netscape Communications in 1995. Initially called LiveScript, it was primarily intended to add interactivity to web pages.

Naming: The naming of JavaScript was a strategic decision by Netscape to leverage the popularity of Java at the time. Java was gaining significant attention and recognition, so Netscape decided to name their new language JavaScript to ride on its coattails. However, it is important to note that despite the similar name, JavaScript and Java are distinct languages with different syntax and use cases.

Key Differences between Java and JavaScript

Syntax: One of the primary differences between Java and JavaScript is their syntax. Java is a statically-typed language, which means that variables must be declared with their data types before they can be used. JavaScript, on the other hand, is a dynamically-typed language, allowing variables to be assigned different data types at runtime.

Application: Java is commonly used for building enterprise-level applications, server-side development, Android app development, and more. It is known for its performance, security, and scalability. On the contrary, JavaScript is primarily used for client-side web development, where it is embedded within HTML pages to add interactivity and dynamic content.

Object-Oriented Programming: Java is a fully object-oriented programming language, where everything is treated as an object. It follows a strict class-based inheritance model. JavaScript, while also supporting object-oriented programming, follows a prototype-based inheritance model, allowing objects to inherit directly from other objects.

Similarities between Java and JavaScript

Despite their differences, Java and JavaScript do share some similarities:

C-like Syntax: Both languages have a similar syntax, influenced by the C programming language. This makes it easier for developers who are familiar with one language to understand the other.

Object-Oriented Programming: Although their approaches differ, both Java and JavaScript support object-oriented programming paradigms. They provide mechanisms for encapsulation, inheritance, and polymorphism.

Popular in Web Development: Java and JavaScript are widely used in web development. While Java is often used on the server-side, JavaScript is the go-to language for client-side scripting.


In conclusion, Java and JavaScript have similar names, but they are distinct programming languages with different purposes and syntax. The similarity in their names is primarily a marketing decision made by Netscape to capitalize on the popularity of Java. While Java is a general-purpose language used for various applications, JavaScript is primarily used for client-side web development. Understanding the differences between these two languages is crucial to avoid confusion and to use them effectively in their respective domains.


– Oracle: https://www.oracle.com/java/
– Mozilla Developer Network: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/JavaScript