As for python (which is my language of choice): it's an awesome language, very well suited to AI. There is only a catch: it is very slow, and given the relatively short turn time in the challenge games, getting a well performing bot coded with python requires much more "smart coding" [read: subtle optimisations] than faster languages do.
Of course a language any programmer should know at least the basics of is C... so - if you don't know anything about it - this could represent a nice chance to get your hands dirty with it!
HTH, and welcome to the club!
Statistics: Posted by mac — Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:31 am