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Which Programming Language is at the forefront in 2024?

In the realm of programming languages, staying informed about the latest trends is crucial for developers worldwide. SlashData, a prominent researcher in the tech industry, has recently shared key insights from their 26th Developer Nation survey, which involved input from more than 10,000 developers across 135 different countries.

The survey outcomes illuminate current developments within the developer community, particularly focusing on programming languages and their expanding user bases.

JavaScript Holds Its Ground at the Forefront

As per the report findings, JavaScript retains its position as the most in-demand programming language, with an active community of 25.2 million developers globally. This figure signifies a notable surge of 4 million developers within the past year.

Size of programming language communities in Q1 2024.

Significantly, JavaScript’s appeal remains robust among more seasoned developers, indicating sustained growth from those enhancing their skill sets with the language rather than newcomers entering the field.

Python Surpasses Java in Popularity

In a notable shift, Python has overtaken Java this year, boasting an impressive 18.2 million developers compared to Java’s 17.7 million.

Python’s upward trajectory, which includes a surge of over 2.1 million developers in the last 12 months, is driven by the escalating interest in machine learning and artificial intelligence, where Python shines with its extensive libraries and supportive community.

In contrast, Java, while still expanding, has seen a more modest uptick and is gaining ground in backend and web development while facing challenges in the desktop and mobile sectors.

Emerging Languages Experience Rapid Growth

Rust and Go have garnered attention for their swift rise in popularity. Rust has nearly doubled its user base in the last two years, reaching 4 million developers by early 2024. Its appeal stems from its high performance and robust memory safety features, crucial in the realm of cybersecurity.

Meanwhile, Go now boasts 4.7 million developers and is widely utilized in backend services due to its streamlined concurrency management and comprehensive standard library.

Challenges for Novice Developers

The survey highlights a lower adoption rate of JavaScript among early-stage developers, with only 52% utilizing the language, compared to over 62% among seasoned counterparts. This trend suggests a progression where developers embrace JavaScript as they gain expertise and engage with existing projects leveraging the language.

Conversely, languages like PHP and C# witness less traction among emerging developers, hinting at a shift in educational emphasis or initial career trajectories that may not align with these once-dominant languages.

Ranking of programming languages over the last two years.
Ranking of programming languages over the last two years.

Survey Methodology Insights

The Developer Nation survey, conducted online from November 2023 to February 2024, aims to present a comprehensive and globally representative sample of the developer cohort. The survey methodology involves meticulous weighting to address regional and sampling biases, offering a well-rounded perspective of the developer landscape.

For further insights, you can refer to the detailed analysis on SlashData’s blog post or directly access the comprehensive data here.

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