Some of the questions we get most frequently at RedMonk concern programming language usage; which languages are being used, how much, and what are the respective growth/decline trajectories? Because there is no single canonical source for this data – even representative surveys are problematic – we examine as many distinct sources as we can to form a larger picture.
One of these comes from our client Black Duck, whose already significant Knowledge Base was substantially expanded by its October acquisition of Ohloh. Black Duck’s primary mission in life is digesting information about open source code, from license to language, to streamline the consumption process for enterprises. As it turns out, this data can also be used to understand developer trends. The folks from Black Duck have been kind enough to share some of the language usage data from their knowledge base, which we hope to do regularly, and which I in turn will relay to you here.
Before I proceed, two things to note.
First, the data supplied by Black Duck included the Top 13 languages usage, but I’ve filtered that down to the seven you see here. Among those filtered was what Black Duck defines as “shell,” which was one spot higher than Ruby; it was omitted because part of that volume is likely configuration and installation shell scripts, which are not what I’m interested in here. The other languages were omitted – as with C# – because their overall usage was insignificant (1.2% all time) and growth or decline were neglible.
Second, the dates selected were arbitrary for this instance, because this was an ad hoc query run at our request. Consider timing as necessary when evaluating this data.
When we compare March’s figures to the all time volume, meanwhile, the pattern is even more pronounced: dynamic languages have universally gained share, while C, C++ and Java all have declined.
Credit: Our thanks again to Black Duck for sharing this data.