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Lua vs Python | Popularity, Salary, Performance, Features, and Applications

Lua vs Python

Lua vs Python

If you want to work on games, web applications, embedded systems, desktop applications, or graphic software, you should learn Lua.

Lua is a powerful, efficient, lightweight, embeddable scripting language. Lua is intended to be embedded into other applications.

It supports procedural programming, object-oriented programming, functional programming, data-driven programming, and data description.

On the other hand, Python is a general-purpose programming language that focuses on simplicity and readability.

Rather than building all of its functionality into its core, Python was designed to be highly extensible through modules.

Python is commonly used for web development, GUI development, system administration, software development, automation, testing tools, machine learning, data analytics, data visualization, and data science.

If you are interested in working on web development, machine learning, automation tools, and data science, data analytics, you should learn Python.

Python stats

Comparing programming languages and choosing which one to learn can be tricky, there are many factors to consider in order to choose the right programming language for the job you want to do.

Popularity, opportunities, types of projects, salaries, resources, learning curve, etc. are some of the factors that many people consider when comparing programming languages and choosing which one to learn.

Here are some of the comparisons and considerations you should make when choosing to learn a new programming language.


Comparing the popularity of programming languages is not an easy task because each programming language is different and they all seek to solve different problems.

Plus, other programming languages have been around for a longer time than others, giving them more time to be tried and tested, so, bear that in mind.

If you want to learn a programming language solely for its popularity among developers, you should learn Python over Lua.

Generally, Python is more popular than Lua. As of June 2023, the TIOBE INDEX ranks Python as the most popular programming language while Lua is ranked as the 32nd most popular programming language.

According to a Stack Overflow survey of 2022, Python is the 4th most commonly used programming language, it is used by 43.51% of professional developers.

On the other hand, Lua is the 25th most commonly used programming language, it is used by 3.23% of professional developers according to the same survey.

Python is also loved by many developers than Lua within their respective communities. As of 2022, Python is loved by 67.34% of developers versus 32.66% of developers who dreaded it.

On the other hand, Lua is loved by 42.73% of developers versus 57.27% of developers who dreaded it.

Ultimately, if your choice of which programming language to learn depends on popularity, you should learn Python.

Also read, Is Python Enough to Get a Job?


Another popular criterion that many people use to compare programming languages and as an incentive to learn a new programming language is salary.

Salaries for developers differ from one company to the other and from one country to the other.

Experience is another factor that comes into play as far as salaries are concerned.

The more experience you have with a certain technology or programming language, the more likely you are of getting a higher salary.

Generally, Lua developers get higher salaries than Python developers.

According to a Stack Overflow survey of top-paying programming languages, Lua developers get an average salary of $79,568 per year.

On the other hand, Python developers get an average salary of $71,105 per year, about $8,000 less than Lua developers.

Here are 10 Programming Languages that Pay more than $90,000

So, if the salary is your major incentive for learning a language, you should learn Lua over Python, because you are more likely to get a higher salary as a Lua developer than as a Python developer.

Here are some of the popular jobs you can get as a Python Developer.


Lua and Python are some of the easiest languages to learn. Lua has fewer rules and comes with only 21 Keywords. It is also easy to maintain a Lua codebase even when the project is huge.

Many developers point “Fast learning curve” as the leading cause for choosing and learning Lua.

Python is also very easy to learn. It has an English-like, easy-to-understand syntax that makes it very easy to write code.

It is also easy to maintain and debug Python code because it is more readable. Getting started with Python as a complete beginner is very easy than many other programming languages.

The good news is that there are plenty of helpful resources for both Python and Lua to help you learn the languages.

The Python and Lua communities are very active and helpful, in case you get stuck with something.


In general, Lua provides better performance than Python.

Lua is also very fast and performant, the designers of Lua focused on improving its speed, portability, extensibility, and ease of use in development.

When Lua is used with its just-in-time compiler, it is widely regarded as one of the fastest scripting languages in the world.

In general, Lua strives to provide simple, flexible meta-features that can be extended as needed.

Lua is also distributed in a small package and builds out-of-the-box in all platforms that have a standard C compiler.

Another great advantage of Lua is that you can run Lua code in a C program or run C code in a Lua program using a simple Lua C API.

This makes it easy to embed high-performance C code in Lua programs and other applications.



Lua has a small footprint and is highly optimized, making it ideal for resource-constrained environments.

The interpreter is fast and compact, enabling Lua programs to run efficiently even on devices with limited memory and processing power.

Lua’s simplicity contributes to its efficiency, as it avoids unnecessary abstractions and provides direct access to low-level operations.

Additionally, Lua offers a just-in-time (JIT) compiler called LuaJIT, which can significantly boost performance for computationally intensive applications.

Lua was designed to be easily integrated into existing software projects.

It provides a straightforward C API that allows developers to incorporate Lua as a scripting language in their applications.

This feature enables rapid prototyping, customization, and scripting capabilities for complex systems.

Lua is used by many companies such as Adobe, Redis, Venmo, Lost Mable LLC, Aerospike, Wikipedia, Shopify, Close, Thumbtack, Roblox, Tokopedia, Unacademy, and many others.


Python has a large standard library that provides tools and features suited for many applications. It supports many standard protocols and formats like HTTP, MIME, and many others.

It also includes modules that can be used for relational database connection, unit testing, and manipulation of regular expressions.

Python has many amazing features, libraries, and packages that make it a popular choice for web development, scientific and numeric applications, system administration, GUI development, and more.

Python powers some of the complex applications developed by companies like Google, NASA, IBM, Microsoft, Meta, Cisco, Duolingo, Pinterest, Reddit, Pixar, Netflix, and many others.


If you want a high-paying language for building games, web applications, embedded systems, desktop applications, or graphic software, you should learn Lua.

If you want a popular language that you can learn easily, develop applications quickly, and work on machine learning, data science, automation tools, and web applications, you should learn Python.

Lua vs Python | Popularity, Salary, Performance, Features, and Applications
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