Most popular programming languages shift at Github

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It’s hard to tell, but this appears to be based on a count of repositories using each language. That doesn’t correlate to how often any of those projects are installed or used, just how many projects were created. It’s still interesting, but some other metrics to compare with would be even more interesting (which language creates the most unused repositories?).


I imagine correlating the number of repositories with the number of likes (or watchers) they receive would be the easiest way to gauge popularity.

Javascript will be gaining traction due to its increasing use as a backend language - full-stack development is somewhat appealing - and some of the frameworks are extremely popular. It’s essentially doubled its target audience (and it was a common, popular language, even before then).

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Who thought of presenting the data that way? There’s a reason we don’t draw graphs that way - it obscures most of the information.

Huh, I thought it was a super clear way to communicate the data - and aside from the slightly unconventional labelling it’s just a standard line chart.

(I’m not sure what’s going on with the outliers though, they confuse things a little)

Java: The Florida of programming languages.


You guys, I been writing Perl all week


Some day, some day, my mad Forth skills will be in demand again. :smiley:

Is the rise in Java from 7th to 2nd place reflective of an actual increase in use of Java? If so, then for what? Seriously, is there a massive Java trend I’m not aware of? I mean, I tend to be behind the times anyway (see quip about Forth above), so it’s certainly possible. I just haven’t seen an upsurge in the number of sites asking permission to run Java.

Or is it just that the Java community has slowly discovered how awesome Github is?

Or are people just confusing Javascript and Java?

Java is used for Android applications and is still used often for server side web applications. It is almost never used for applets, the internet things that require your permission, any longer.

This chart is about the number of projects (maybe new projects) on GitHub in each language. It’s not a very good gauge of overall use or installs.

I’ve heard that COBOL is in demand. There are apparently a lot of old servers running crucial bank and government COBOL applications still running and not many COBOL programmers left to work on them.


You got off easy. You could have been reading Perl all week.


Perl may be as sexy as a badger with mange (picture that in your mind (Picture It!!)) but it is still the Dark Matter of programming.

Noone can see it, but its 70% of everything.


Its not just GitHub the Tiobe index has Java on the rise as well (up 4.29% from last year).

They attribute the rise to the new functional programming idioms in Java 8.

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I sure hope you’re right. Because:

Really struck a nerve, y’know?


MUMPS (M) is in the same boat. Tons of legacy code out there, and all of us old farts are retiring or have long since moved on to other things. There’s a MUMPS recruiter out there who’s been chasing me for the same job for a year. Still not up to enough $$$ for me to consider it though.

Ooh ooh, and Lisp are the neutrinos, since they never interact with anyone and are only seen a dozen times a year.


It’s not that PERL isn’t used, it’s that it’s not in source repositories. This is because no one makes changes to PERL after it is first written, as it becomes opaque about a month after it is originally coded.

(I kid - I was making changes to 10 year old PERL code yesterday)


Just some anecdotal info: I have several Python applications on Github that are considered Javascript simply because they include a minified js library that has a lot of lines of code. I don’t know if they are using the same categorization for these totals, but take them with a grain of salt.


No, PERL is a WOL (Write Only Language).


i think everyone is reading the graph wrong.

in fact, it really highlights how much more powerful perl is over time. you simply need less of it than other languages.

contrast this with java, where apparently people need more and more code every year to get anything useful done.


That’s unnecessarily harsh. Java is a fine language as long as you don’t write applets or a UI with it.