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Let’s first have a brief discussion about computer programming basics before we proceed towards understanding the logic behind various categories of computer programming languages and browsing through a list thereof. To put it precisely, computer programming includes all those activities that are involved in creating and maintaining the source code, viz., designing, writing, testing and debugging the source code of any given program. A computer program is a set of instructions that are developed and written in such a way that it gets the computer to perform a specific set of tasks. These instructions, specifications and performance requirements, that are written to form a program, constitute of the source code of the program. That, I suppose, gives a brief idea on what computer programs and computer programming is all about. Now, let’s proceed towards understanding languages in a little detail.

Programming Languages

A programming language is a description, measurement or expression of processes or algorithms which includes digital as well as non digital data that can be performed by computing machines. Programming languages are created for a large number of purposes but the basic logic behind their creation is common – they serve to control and regulate the behavior and performance of such computing machines with regards to their desired output. All programming languages have two basic components – syntax and semantics. The syntax is the form or arrangement of symbols and characters typical to a particular language. Semantics deal with the meaning that a set of characters convey when arranged in a particular way. For instance, let’s look at a couple of simple programming languages examples to get an idea of syntax and semantics with relation to programming.

Simple C++ Program Example
Syntax:
#include
using namespace std;

int main()
{
cout < “Good Morning!\n”;

return 0;
}
Semantic:
Good Morning!

Simple COBOL Program Example
Syntax:
DISPLAY “Good Morning”.
STOP RUN

Semantics:
Good Morning

Types of Programming Languages

Broadly, there are two basic types of programming languages based upon the level of abstraction from the architecture of the computer’s instruction set. These two types of programming languages are high level language and low-level language. High level languages are farthest in similarity from machine syntaxes and most of these languages make use of real world language elements. As such, high level languages are more user-friendly and offer larger portability across various platforms. These languages are characterized by the conspicuous visible absence of CPU processing details such as scope management and models for memory access. In order for the computing machine to understand and process the inputs of the user, conveyed through high level language, such languages usually undergo any of the three types of programs – interpreters, compilers or translators – to get converted into an executable form. Common examples of high level language are Java, C and C++. Low level languages are the closest in form to the computer’s internal machine code and are, therefore, easily and readily executed by the computer without having to involve intermediary conveying programs like translators, compilers and interpreters. 1GL and 2GL are examples of common programming languages of this category.

Computer Programming Languages: List by Category

There are over 700 programming languages that have been developed till date! Let’s look at a categorized list of programming languages that includes some of the most prominent and popular languages listed under different categories.

Array Programming Languages

  • Fortran
  • Analytica
  • Chapel
  • APL
  • FISh
  • F
  • A+
  • F-Script
  • Fortress
  • IDL
  • J
  • K
  • PDL
  • R
  • NESL
  • MATLAB (Matrix Laboratory)
  • S-Lang
  • Octave
  • Nial
  • SAC
  • ZPL
  • X10

Aspect Oriented Programming Languages

  • AspectLua
  • AspectJ
  • CaesarJ
  • Object Teams
  • E
  • Aspect C++
  • Compose

Authoring Programming Languages

  • PILOT
  • Bigwig
  • TUTOR
  • Coursewriter

Assembly Languages

  • ASEM-51
  • AKI
  • ASCENT
  • ASPER
  • BAL
  • C–
  • COMPASS
  • Emu8086
  • EDTASM
  • FAP
  • FASM
  • GAS
  • HLA
  • HLASM
  • LC-3
  • Linoleum
  • MACRO-11
  • MACRO-20
  • MACRO-32
  • MASM
  • MI
  • MIPS
  • Motorola 68KAssembly of CPUs
  • NASM
  • NEAT
  • PAL-III
  • PASM
  • RosAsm
  • Sphinx
  • TASM
  • Yasm

Command Line Interface Programming Languages

  • 4DOS
  • .bat
  • Windows PowerShell
  • CHAIN
  • CLIST
  • DCL
  • DOS Batch Language
  • CMS EXEC
  • EXEC 2
  • JCL
  • sh
  • csh
  • Ch
  • tcsh
  • bash
  • ksh
  • zsh
  • Rc
  • Es shell
  • REXX
  • SCLI
  • SsCLI
  • TACL

Compiled Programming Languages

  • Ada
  • ALGOL
  • Ateji PX
  • BASIC
  • C
  • C++
  • C#
  • CLEO
  • CLIPPER 5.3
  • Clush
  • COBOL
  • CLisp
  • Cobra
  • Corn
  • Curl
  • D
  • DASL
  • Delphi
  • DIBOL
  • Dylan
  • dylan.NET
  • Ecere C
  • Eiffel
  • Factor
  • Forth
  • Fortran
  • Go
  • Haskell
  • Harbour
  • Java
  • JOVIAL
  • LabVIEW
  • Nemerle
  • Objective-C
  • Pascal
  • Plus
  • ppC++
  • Python
  • RPG
  • Scheme
  • SmallTalk
  • ML
  • Turing
  • Urq
  • Visual Basic
  • Visual FoxPro
  • Visual Prolog
  • WinDev
  • X++
  • XL
  • Z++

Concurrent Programming Languages

  • Ada
  • ChucK
  • Cilk
  • C Omega
  • Clojure
  • ConcurrentLua
  • Concurrent Pascal
  • Corn
  • Curry
  • E
  • Eiffel
  • Erlang
  • Go
  • Java
  • Join-Calculus
  • Joule
  • Limbo
  • MultiLisp
  • occam
  • Oz
  • Pict
  • SALSA
  • Scala
  • SR

Dataflow Programming Languages

  • Hartman Pipelines
  • G
  • Lucid
  • Max
  • Prograph
  • Pure Data
  • Vee
  • VisSim
  • WebMethods Flow
  • Monk
  • Oz
  • VHDL

Data Oriented Programming Languages

  • Clarion
  • Clipper
  • dBase
  • MUMPS
  • SPARQL
  • SQL
  • Tutorial D
  • Visual FoxPro
  • WebQL

Educational Programming Languages

  • Scratch
  • Etoys
  • Squeak
  • BlueJ
  • Greenfoot
  • NetBeans
  • Scheme
  • Logo
  • Common Lisp
  • newLISP
  • Gambas
  • SiMPLE
  • Microsoft Small Basic
  • BASIC-256
  • Visual Basic .Net (one of the most popular computer programming langauges for beginners)
  • Alice
  • AgentSheets
  • Baltie
  • E-Slate
  • CiMPLE
  • Hackey Hack
  • Guido van Robot
  • Kodu
  • Karel
  • Mama
  • Pascal
  • Lego Mindstorms
  • RoboMind
  • Phrogram
  • Stagecast Creator
  • Curry
  • Haskel
  • A++
  • Oz
  • Qi II
  • M2001

Data Structured Programming Languages

  • dBase
  • SQL
  • Clarion
  • MUMPS
  • SPARQL
  • Fox Pro
  • Clipper
  • WebQL

Declarative Programming Languages

  • Ant
  • Lustre
  • Modelica
  • xBase
  • MetaPost
  • DASL
  • XSL Transformations
  • Prolog
  • Poses++

Extension Programming Languages

  • Ateji PX
  • AutoLISP
  • CAL
  • C/AL
  • DML
  • Guile
  • Lua
  • OptimJ
  • Python
  • REXX
  • Ruby
  • S-Lang
  • SQL
  • Tcl
  • Vimscript
  • VBA
  • Windows PowerShell

Esoteric Programming Languages

  • Whitespace
  • Chef
  • Klingon
  • Befunge
  • Shakespeare
  • LOLCODE
  • FALSE
  • Piet
  • INTERCAL
  • Malbolge
  • SNUSP

Functional Programming Languages

  • Charity
  • Curl
  • Clean
  • F#
  • Haskell
  • Lisp
  • Hop
  • Mathematica
  • ML
  • Erlang
  • R
  • Spreadsheets
  • Kite
  • OPS5
  • Opal

Logic Oriented Programming Languages

  • Leda
  • Janus
  • Poplog
  • Oz
  • Fril
  • CLACL
  • ROOP
  • Alma-0

Fourth Generation Commercial Environment Programming Languages

  • FOCUS
  • MARK-IV
  • Oracle Express 4GL
  • SAS
  • XML mosaic
  • Aubit 4GL
  • CorVision
  • Uniface
  • LINC 4GL
  • ABAP
  • Ubercode
  • xBase
  • MAPPER
  • Visual DataFlex
  • Today
  • Visual FoxPro

Machine Programming Languages

  • UltraSPARC
  • Motorola 6800
  • Intel 8008/8080/8085
  • StrongARM
  • ARM
  • Commodore 64 CPU
  • MIPS R2000/ R3000
  • National 32032

Interactive Mode Programming Languages

  • BASIC
  • Clojure
  • CLisp
  • Erlang
  • F#
  • Forth
  • FPr
  • Fril
  • Haskell
  • IDL
  • Lua
  • MUMPS
  • Maple
  • MATLAB
  • ML
  • Mythryl
  • Perl
  • PostScript
  • Python
  • R
  • REXX
  • Ruby
  • Scala
  • Scheme
  • SmallTalk
  • S-Lang
  • Tcl
  • Windows PowerShell

Interpreted Programming Languages

  • Ant
  • APL
  • AutoHotkey
  • Autolt
  • BASIC
  • Databus
  • Eiffel
  • Forth
  • FPr
  • Frink
  • GML
  • Groovy
  • Haskell
  • J
  • LISP
  • LPC
  • Lua
  • Lush
  • MUMPS
  • Maple
  • Pascal
  • Perl
  • Pikt
  • PostScript
  • Python
  • REXX
  • R
  • Ruby
  • S-Lang
  • Spin
  • TorqueScript
  • thinBasic
  • VBScript
  • Windowes PowerShell
  • XMLmosaic

Iterative Programming Languages

  • Aldor
  • Alphard
  • C#
  • CLU
  • Cobra
  • Eiffel
  • Icon
  • IPL-v
  • Lua
  • Lush
  • Python
  • Sather
  • XL

List Based Programming Languages

  • FPr
  • Joy
  • Lisp
  • Lush
  • R
  • TCl
  • TRAC

Little Languages

  • apply
  • awk
  • Comet
  • SQL

Macro Programming Languages

  • cpp
  • m4
  • PHP
  • SMX

Meta programming Languages

  • C++
  • Curl
  • D
  • Forth
  • Haskell
  • Lisp
  • Lua
  • Maude System
  • MetaL
  • MetaOCaml
  • Nemerle
  • Perl
  • Python
  • ruby
  • SmallTalk
  • XL

Multiparadigm Programming Languages

  • Ada
  • ALF
  • Alma
  • APL
  • BETA
  • C++
  • C#
  • ChucK
  • Cobra
  • CLisp
  • Corn
  • Curl
  • Curry
  • D
  • Delphi
  • Dylan
  • ECMAScript
  • Eiffel
  • F
  • Fantom
  • FPr
  • Harbour
  • Hop
  • J
  • LabVIEW
  • Lasso
  • Lava
  • Leda
  • Lua
  • Metaobject protocols
  • Mythryl
  • Nemerle
  • Objective Camrl
  • Oz
  • Object Pascal
  • Perl
  • PHP
  • Pliant
  • Poplog
  • ppC++
  • Prograph
  • Python
  • R
  • REBOL
  • ROOP
  • Ruby
  • Scala
  • Seed 7
  • SISAL
  • Spreadsheets
  • Tcl
  • Windows PowerShell
  • XL

Numerical Analysis Programming Languages

  • Algae
  • AMPL
  • GAMS
  • MATLAB
  • Seneca

Non-English Based Programming Languages

  • ARLOGO
  • Chinese BASIC
  • Fjölnir
  • HPL
  • Lexico
  • Rapira
  • Glagol
  • Portugol

Object Oriented Class Based Programming Languages

  • CLisp
  • Dylan
  • Goo
  • Cecil
  • Actor
  • Ada 95
  • BETA
  • C++
  • Chrome
  • ChucK
  • Cobra
  • ColdFusion
  • Corn
  • Curl
  • D
  • DASL
  • Delphi
  • dylan.NET
  • E
  • Ecere C
  • Eiffel
  • F-Script
  • Fortran
  • Fortress
  • FPr
  • GAMBAS
  • GML
  • Harbour
  • j
  • Java
  • Kite
  • LabVIEW
  • Lava
  • Lua
  • Modula-2
  • Moto
  • Nemerle
  • NetRexx
  • Oberon-2
  • Object Pascal
  • Object Caml
  • Perl 5
  • PHP
  • Pliant
  • ppC++
  • Prograph
  • Python
  • Revolution
  • Ruby
  • Scala
  • Seccia
  • Simula
  • SmallTalk
  • SPIN
  • SuperCollider
  • VBScript
  • Visual DataFlex
  • Visual FoxPro
  • Visual Prolog
  • X++
  • XOTcl

Object Oriented Prototype Based Programming Languages

  • ABCL/1/R/R2/c plus
  • Agora
  • cecil
  • ECMAScript
  • Etoys
  • Glyphic script
  • Io
  • Lisaac
  • Lua
  • MOO
  • NewtonScript
  • Obliq
  • R
  • REBOL
  • Self
  • Slate
  • TADS

OFFSide Rule Programming Languages

  • ISWIM
  • ABC
  • Hyper Talk
  • Ivy
  • Miranda
  • Occam
  • Pliant
  • SPIn
  • XL

Procedural Programming Languages

  • Ada
  • ALGOL
  • Alma-0
  • BASIC
  • BLISS
  • C
  • C++
  • C#
  • ChucK
  • Cobra
  • COBOL
  • ColdFusion
  • Component Pascal
  • Curl
  • D
  • DASL
  • dylan.NET
  • Delphi
  • Ecere C
  • ECMAScript
  • Eiffel
  • Fortran
  • FPC Pascal
  • Harbour
  • Hyper Talk
  • Java
  • JOVIAL
  • Lasso
  • Modula-2
  • Oberon
  • Oberon-2
  • MATLAB
  • MUMPS
  • Nemerle
  • Occam
  • Pascal
  • PCASTL
  • Perl
  • PL/C
  • PL/I
  • Plus
  • Python
  • R
  • Rapira
  • RPG
  • S-Lang
  • VBScript
  • Visual Basic
  • Visual FoxPro
  • X++
  • XL
  • XMLmosaic

Reflective Languages

  • Aspect Oriented
  • Befunge
  • C##
  • ChucK
  • Cobra
  • Component Pascal Black Box Component Builder
  • Cobra
  • Curl
  • Delphi
  • ECMAScript
  • Eiffel
  • Forth
  • Harbour
  • Java
  • Lisp
  • Lua
  • Maude System
  • .NET FCLR
  • Oberon-2
  • Objective-C
  • PCASTL
  • Perl
  • PHP
  • Pico
  • Pliant
  • Poplog
  • Prolog
  • Python
  • REBOL
  • Ruby
  • SmallTalk
  • SNOBOL
  • Tcl
  • X++
  • XL

Rule Based Programming Languages

  • CLIPS
  • Constraint Handling Rules
  • Jess
  • OPS5
  • Prolog
  • Poses++

Scripting Languages

  • AppleScript
  • AWK
  • BeanShell
  • Ch
  • CLIST
  • ColdFusion
  • ECMAScript
  • CMS EXEC
  • EXEC 2
  • F-Script
  • Falcon
  • Frink
  • GML
  • ICI
  • Io
  • JASS
  • Groovy
  • Join Java
  • Tea
  • Lua
  • MEL
  • Mythryl
  • Perl
  • PHP
  • Pikt
  • Python
  • R
  • REBOL
  • REXX
  • Revolution
  • Ruby
  • SmallTalk
  • S-Lang
  • Se
  • Tcl
  • TorqueScript
  • VBScript
  • Windows PowerShell
  • Winbatch

Stack Based Programming Languages

  • Cat
  • colorForth
  • Factor
  • Forth
  • Joy
  • Piet
  • Poplog
  • PostScript
  • RPL
  • Urq

Synchronous Programming Languages

  • Argos
  • Averest
  • Esterel
  • LEA
  • Lustre
  • Signal
  • SynchCharts

Syntax Handling Programming Languages

  • ANTLR
  • Coco/R
  • GNU bison
  • GNU Flex
  • Lex
  • M4
  • yacc
  • JavaCC
  • Rats!

Visual Programming Languages

  • CODE
  • Eiffel
  • Fabrik
  • LabVIEW
  • Lava
  • Limnor
  • Mindscript
  • Max
  • NXT-G
  • PPL
  • Prograph
  • Pure Data
  • Quartz Composer
  • Scratch
  • Simulink
  • Spreadsheets
  • Subtext
  • Tinkertoy
  • VEE
  • VisSim
  • ww
  • EICASLAB

Niklaus Wirth Programming Languages

  • ALGOL W
  • Modula
  • Modula-2 (Obliq based on Modula 3)
  • Oberon
  • Oberon-2
  • Oberon-07
  • Object Pascal

XML Based Programming Languages

  • Ant
  • C Omega
  • Jelly
  • LZX
  • MXML
  • XQuery
  • XSLT
  • XMLmosaic

It is common for many programming languages to fall under multiple categories based upon their structure, function, orientation or any other criteria. A programming language’s popularity depends upon these versatilities and functionalities.

Latest Programming Languages

The following programming languages were developed in the years starting from 2000. Let’s take a look at this list of the most recently developed programming languages.

  • Alma-0
  • Aspect-J
  • Ada 2005
  • Boo
  • C#
  • Cobra
  • Clojure
  • D
  • F#
  • Fantom
  • Factor
  • Ferite
  • Groovy
  • Go
  • Io
  • Joy
  • Join Java
  • Kite
  • Links
  • Little b
  • Nemerle
  • OptimJ
  • Oberon-07
  • Pure
  • Squirrel
  • Scala
  • Subtext
  • Visual Basic .Net
  • Vala
  • Windows PowerShell
  • XL

The programming languages list provided here attempts to include most of the common programming languages in major categories. Those who are pursuing computer programming careers must be aware of all other languages belonging to various other categories which have not been elucidated in this article. This article on programming languages list is an attempt to enlist some of the most commonly used, and recently developed, programming languages to give an idea on the vast number and variety of programming languages that are available for a wide variety of programming purposes and requirements. Happy programming!

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