Most Difficult Programming Languages To Learn 2023: Top 15 Hardest

Most Difficult Programming Languages To Learn 2023: Top 15 Hardest

Most Difficult Programming Languages, A programming language is a means of communication between programmers (developers) and computers. A set of rules called a programming language enables the conversion of textual values into different ways of producing machine code, or in the case of visual programming languages, graphical elements.

In general, a program is a set of instructions created in a certain language (such as C, C++, Java, or Python) to do a specific purpose.

List of the top 15 hardest programming language to learn

1. C++

Bjarne Stroustrup created the general-purpose programming language C++ as an addition to the C programming language. It is what development teams for machine learning and data mining applications, as well as online and in-game development use often.

Yet, in terms of usage and popularity, high-level languages like Python, Java, and JavaScript seem to have exceeded C++ recently.

C++ is challenging to grasp due to its multi-paradigm structure and more sophisticated syntax. It is commonly popular for being particularly difficult for beginners, but it may be difficult for programmers who have never worked with low-level languages.

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Furthermore, C++ supports low-level memory manipulation, which, if improperly applied, might result in unpredictable behavior and memory leaks. Moreover, the C++ Standard Template Library (STL) offers potent, high-level abstractions that can be initially challenging to comprehend.

2. Haskell

Before finally mastering this most difficult programming language, you will at least fail to learn it three or four times. But it goes without saying that it will make you hate other programming languages!

A fully functional programming language is Haskell. In imperative languages, tasks are delegated to the computer, which then completes them. As it completes them, its condition can alter.

It is, however, slack. Haskell will not execute any functions or make any computations unless forced to do so and you expressly tell it to. This enables you to think of programs as a series of data changes, which is consistent with referential transparency.

Most Difficult Programming Languages

3. Cow

Hundreds, if not thousands, are misled by the moniker. We are not indicating a technology that will allow you converse with a cow. We don’t even intend to create a fake Google Translate interface to reveal “MOO’s” secret meaning.

In 2023, COW, one of the top 6 hardest coding languages to learn, will be the topic of our discussion. It was created at the beginning of 2013, but the development community has paid it little attention. As time went on, it gained a reputation as the most difficult programming language in existence.

Cow is Turing complete and has 12 instructions, four more than Brainfuck. The word “MOO” appears in all 12 of the instructions.

4. Malbolge

Malbolge is one of the most difficult programming languages to learn since it stole the mental tranquility of many engineers. For you to understand the complexity of this language, which Ben Olmstead created in 1998, it took over two years to write the first program. Malbolge’s complexity is mostly due to its; (a) ability to substitute instructions after its execution (b) limited instruction set and (c) loadable data constraints.

To this aim, it appears that the coding in this language is flawed or shoddy. In reality, a lot of people think Ben Olmstead didn’t create a single program in this language. However, Hisashi Lizawa suggested software protection through obfuscation by offering a Malbolge programming tutorial.

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Programs that one cannot read, for instance, are resistant to change. Let’s say Alice wants to send Bob a program (or binary code), and Bob will execute the program. Bob requires the go-ahead to decode the code that even when encrypted, can still execute it. Bob has the chance to alter it as a result.

But the hardest to learn programming languages are used to create an unreadable program that layers the code and acts as encrypted data. That is a big advantage, to be sure.

Importantly, the language took its name from the eighth circle of hell in Dante’s inferno, which is the place where individuals who commit fraud go. Malbolge is “A programming language that originated from HELL,” to put it another way.

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4. Intercal

In 1972, Jim Lyon and Don Woods created INTERCAL as a parody of various computer languages. It is one of the most challenging programming languages to learn. Compiler Language With No Pronounceable Acronym was its original name.

Several aspects in INTERCAL are designed to irritate programmers. For instance, it uses words like “PLEASE” as modifiers. If one uses the term “PLEASE” is not frequently enough in the code, the compiler can reject it. The program is deemed ‘insufficiently respectful’ by the organization. On the other hand, the compiler rejects the code as being “excessively courteous” if the use of the modifier “PLEASE” is too frequent.

5. Scala

A form of general-purpose programming language called Scala was developed in 2004. Scala is a functional programming language that runs on the Java virtual machine using Java Bytecode. The most typical application for it is static systems.

Due to its high level of complexity and reputation as one of the most challenging programming languages, it mixes original principles with Java.

Like C++, Scala is an object-oriented language with only two file extensions. The grammar of the two languages is actually extremely similar. The most often used principles associated with Scala are type interference, slow evaluation, and pattern matching.

6. JavaScript

The Netscape, Mozilla, and Ecma organizations collaborated to develop JavaScript, sometimes known as JS, an object-oriented, high-level programming language. Although influenced by a variety of languages, including Java, C, and Python, among others, JavaScript is without a doubt one of the most challenging programming languages.
Video games can benefit from JavaScript in the same way that internet websites do, by making them more interactive and user-friendly. In the current environment, this programming language is a built-in capability of almost all websites and browsers.

7. Prolog

Prolog is a logic-based, incredibly economical language that helps companies cut maintenance and development costs. It is a difficult language to learn because your program’s fundamental logic must be faultless.
One cannot simply copy and paste the Prolog code with hopes that it would function; otherwise, compiler problems or infinite recursion will most likely result. With the vast majority of procedural languages in use today, programmers can get away with some logical mistakes.

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8. PHP

On our list of object-oriented, reflective programming languages, is PHP. Even after 22 years since its beginnings, this language is still changing. Some of the most challenging programming languages, including C++, Java, and Perl, have had an influence on PHP. While this is true of PHP, it is still predominantly a server-side language.
A general-purpose programming language known only by its abbreviation, PHP, originally stood for Personal Home Page. The fact that PHP is much more adaptable than any of the other hardest programming languages on this list has contributed to its relative popularity.


It is still in use higher-level systems and for artificial intelligence. It is the second-oldest programming language after FORTRAN.

Learning it is challenging because it has a fractured language, and its solutions are domain-specific.
Parentheses are frequently employed in LISP syntax, which can be challenging to get used to.

According to research, LISP programs are significantly smaller and execute more quickly when compared to those written in C, C++, Java, and comparable languages. The most logical AI programs today employ LISP, which was originally created with the goal of effortlessly processing data strings.

10. Assembly Language

A general phrase used to describe low-level code that serves as native machine code for all microprocessors is assembly language. The other languages on this list were more similar to English in terms of syntax, but they all required bytecode compilation to translate the code into machine instructions.

Since the code is assembled, the term fits. Just by reading a bit of C or Python code, you may determine its purpose. This assignment is challenging in Assembly Language without having complete context knowledge. Every fundamental action, such as inserting and deleting data from memory registers, is a complete sentence.

Understanding how a computer operates on the inside is necessary before starting to master Assembly Language. It could be tough for you to comprehend how the CPU operates, how to organize its memory, or how to read or write from registers if you have only used high-level languages up to this point. Before studying Assembly Language, there is typically a sizable knowledge gap that must be filled.

11. Rust

The most popular language on Stack Overflow for four years running has been the open-source Rust programming language for systems. Rust offers a practical and reliable way to address the shortcomings of other languages while taking the fewest bitter pills possible. It is quick, secure, and concurrent.

Rust enables enterprises to cut expenses by providing improved control over low-level details and ideal memory management. It offers the control and effectiveness of low-level language along with the intuitiveness of high-level language. With the performance and advantages of C and C++ but none of the drawbacks that programmers are familiar with while using these languages, Rust is a contemporary systems language.

Because of its syntax, macrosystem, and alternative approach to several fundamental concepts, Rust has a steep and difficult learning curve. Although one of its greatest advantages is efficient memory management, it can be difficult to get familiar with a compiler that continually prompts you to think about memory. Also, it has numerous programs that perform the same function.

12. Whitespace

It became available on April 1st, 2003. The only characters with meaning in Whitespace are spaces, tabs, and linefeeds. Any non-whitespace characters are ignored by the Whitespace interpreter. This characteristic has the intriguing side effect of making it easy to contain a Whitespace program within the whitespace characters of a program written in another language.

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13. Brainfuck

Urban Müller invented this language in 1993. According to the name, this language is a brainfuck. This is because, the language has just 8 commands total. A sophisticated program cannot be written in this language. Basically, it uses a grid of memory cells to function.

The 8 instructions in this language are as follows: ′′>”; “”; “+”; “-“; “.”; “,”; “[“; “]”.

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14. Befunge

One of the first and most well-known two-dimensional esoteric programming languages is befunge. Chris Pressey designed Befunge in 1993. He made an effort to make the language as difficult to compile as he could. Nonetheless, quite a few implementations of this language as well as numerous dialects and variations known as Fungeoids started to appear in the following years. The two primary varieties of the language are the earlier Befunge-93 and the later Befunge-98. Befunge, unlike other esoteric languages, is not Turing-complete since the original language definition limited the size of the grid on which the program should be typed. But it has no practical use, exactly as other esoteric languages.

15. Forth

First published in 1970. Forth is a procedural and stack-oriented language. Two of the language’s key features are; reflection and structured programming. People used it because it allowed one to combine numerous command sequences and then save them for a later execution. Adapting a language to the demands of the users is analogous to this.


The hardest programming languages to learn have been provided above. Yet if you want to master this challenging language as quickly and easily as you can, you need practice alongside tutorials and books.

Frequently Asked Questions About Programming Languages Most Difficult Programming Languages

Which of the programming languages is the simplest?

Due to its clarity, Python is one of the most widely used programming languages today and is simple to learn for beginners.

Which programming language is the most common?

The most popular programming language now in use worldwide is JavaScript.

Between C++ and C, which is tougher to learn?

In general, C is simpler to learn than C++ and has a simpler syntax. C is faster and more efficient than C++, but C++ is more powerful and adaptable.

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