Sure, other programming languages like Python, Lisp, and Smalltalk as faster to develop in (for the usual reasons: late binding, more interactive development, etc.). However, one feature of the Java platform that I really like is being able to easily package both compiled code and required data in a JAR file.
Typically, I serialize required runtime data to a binary file and when I create a JAR file I add the binary serialized data file as a top level entry. To read the data into memory, I use something like this:
InputStream ins =
ObjectInputStream p = new ObjectInputStream(ins);
Vector my_vector = (Vector) p.readObject();
Then, I can just use the JAR file in other applications and I have both code and required data.