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Technology Trends from the 2019 Stack Overflow Developer Survey

Every year, Stack Overflow surveys tens of thousands of developers around the world to understand how they work, what technologies they use and some other fun facts. The complete report is packed with overwhelming amounts of data that offers something for everybody.

Blockchain is one tech trend the world loves to follow these days and Stack Overflow asked developers their opinions on it. The technology has been making headlines for the last few years but still not necessarily finding its place in the mainstream. The results saw that 80% of organizations are not using Blockchain at all and developers have mixed reviews on how it can be used in the future. Sure, two-thirds of the respondents said Blockchain can be useful in various aspects, but 16.8% say it is a passing fad and 15.6% believe that Blockchain is an irresponsible use of resources.

Expectedly, as they do every year, Stack Overflow used the opportunity to learn about the most popular, loved, hated and wanted technologies. The charts are long and filled with data, so we summarized the findings in the tables below:

Programming, Scripting and Markup Languages
It’s no surprise that JavaScript continues to rank at the top of the list of most popular languages and Stack Overflow pointed out that Python continues to be the fastest growing language — also no surprise. If you want to get paid more, it’s clear that you’re going to have to work with some of the less popular languages. The good news is there are a few languages in the “Most Loved” column and only one in the “Most Dreaded” column (sorry Erlang).
Web Frameworks
For the first time this year, Stack Overflow asked about frameworks for the web separately from other frameworks and libraries. jQuery is the most broadly used. It’s also interesting to note that the results in the tables only represent responses by professional developers and when all developers were surveyed, React.js actually ranked higher than Angular.js in popularity.
Other Frameworks, Libraries and Tools
Although they didn’t make the top 5, more developers did say they use the deep learning framework TensorFlow more than Torch/PyTorch. Interestingly, Torch/PyTorch is more loved than TensorFlow, but TensorFlow is one of the “Most Wanted” (developers who do not yet use it but say they want to learn it).
Databases
As expected, MySQL remains the most popular database used among developers and, for the third year in a row, Redis took the top spot in the Most Loved category and MongoDB clinched #1 in Most Wanted.
Platforms
New this year, Stack Overflow asked developers about container technologies and Docker turned out to be the third most broadly used platform, second most loved and first most wanted.
Developer Environments
When it comes to Developer environments, it’s clear that Visual Studio Code takes the cake, specifically among Web Developers, DevOps and SREs. It ranks the second most popular among Mobile Developers, who are slightly more likely to choose Android Studio.

The survey report contains loads more information around technology trends and predictions by developers. Some are obvious (more developers use Windows as their primary operating systems), some facts are fun but useless (30% believe Elon Musk will be this year’s most influential person in tech) and some are super detailed (you can dive much deeper into the stats summarized in the tables above). If you’re interested or have some extra time, check out the complete report to see all of the data for yourself.

4 Programming Languages Worth Learning in 2019

If you’re considering starting a new career path in the new year, or just looking to pick up a new skill quickly, then don’t skip over this post. This video from Clever Programmer outlines the four best programming languages to learn this year if you want to get a job, including one that has been Googled more than Kim Kardashian.

The four languages are rated based on how easy they are to learn, the job market and potential salary, and how quickly you can create something using that language. While the video may be valid in respect to which languages are your best bet for new opportunities, we’re skeptical about the statement that they can be self-taught and no post-secondary education is necessary. Competing against people with formal training will be a significant challenge. What do you think?

Highlights from the 2018 State of the Octoverse

GitHub, one of the world’s largest development platforms and developer hangouts, publishes State of the Octoverse Report. It tracks user activity and compiles user stats to share how they interact with each other, what they’re working on, rising trends, and some random fun facts.

The report is packed with data and we find the Projects section to be the most interesting because it gives a good snapshot into the hottest projects, languages and topics. Here’s a summary of some of the most interesting findings:

Top Open Source Projects

While those at the top of the list are consistent, GitHub notes that the newer ones (Kubernetes, Azure Docs and DefinitelyTyped) are projects that manage containerized applications, share Azure documentation, and consolidate TypeScript type definitions.

  1. Microsoft/vscode
  2. facebook/react-native
  3. tensorflow/tensorflow
  4. angular/angular-cli
  5. MicrosoftDocs/azure-docs
  6. angular/angular
  7. ansible/ansible
  8. kubernetes/kubernetes 5K
  9. npm/npm
  10. DefinitelyTyped/DefinitelyTyped

Azure Docs is also noted as the fastest growing open source project, with pytorch, godot and nuxt.js (neither of which are in the top 10) rounding up the top three fastest growing projects. GitHub notes: “Overall, we’re seeing trends in growth of projects related to machine learning, gaming, 3D printing, home automation, scientific programming, data analysis, and full stack JavaScript development.”

It’s also interesting to see who is driving these open source projects. While there are millions of paid and volunteer developers involved, some particular organizations fund and encourage this more than others. Microsoft, Google and Red Hat top the list and each have between 3300 and 7700 employees contributing. Also on the list are people from universities like UC Berkely, University of Washington, and MIT.

Top and Fastest Growing Languages

Top and Fastest Growing LanguagesWhen it comes to skills development and understanding what kind of rates you can charge, knowing the world’s most popular and fastest growing programming languages is critical. As can be seen from GitHub’s chart, JavaScript and Java have consistently been numbers 1 and 2 on the list for the past 5 years, with Python and PHP being in 3rd or 4th. The top 6-10 languages, however, have been more volatile. It’s interesting to see how much less popular Ruby has become!

As far as the fastest growing languages, GitHub says it is seeing trends toward more statically typed languages focused on thread safety and interoperability:

  1. Kotlin
  2. HCL
  3. TypeScript
  4. PowerShell
  5. Rust
  6. CMake
  7. Go
  8. Python
  9. Groovy
  10. SQLPL

What About Emojis???

Finally, the most important question: which emojis are being used? Rest assured, GitHub is tracking that too! Fortunately, developers remain quite positive, with the thumbs up, party, heart and happy face being used the most. But it’s not all happy, the thumbs down and confused face finish up the list of most used emojis. Maybe not surprising, they’re both especially popular with C# contributors.

Most-Used Emojis