No longer top dog

Java deposed at top of TIOBE Index

Chris Mayer

Almost ten years at the top (except a tiny blip), it has happened – Java is overtaken at the top of the TIOBE rankings by C.

It’s finally happened then – Java is no longer the most popular software language according to the TIOBE Programming Community index.

The drop into second place behind C means Java’s near-decade stranglehold on the top spot is no more, attaining a 17% rating compared to C’s 17.5%. It was always coming though as Java’s popularity has steadily declined by around a percentage point per month for as long as we can remember. C’s slightly slower drop in popularity means it has become No.1. This is the first time since 2004 where Java hasn’t held top spot, after Google’s methodology confused matters.

The TIOBE compilers believe that Java’s downfall won’t continue much further saying ‘Java will not decline much further due to the popularity of the Android platform, C is able to remain number one for at least another couple of months’

Another interesting note from the April 2012 rankings is that Scala has entered the top 50, placing at #45 with 0.23%. Perhaps this is the start of a big climb up the ladder? JVM stalwart Groovy charts at #30, whilst Google’s Go language has risen ten places to #70. Not exactly setting the world alight, but it’s hard to gauge how many people are using the language, in terms of lines of code written.

The monthly TIOBE Programming Community index indicates the popularity of programming languages, by using popular search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo!, Wikipedia, Amazon, YouTube and Baidu to calculate the rankings. It does not state what the best language is, merely which is featuring most on search engines. If you’re looking for a line-by-line rundown via GitHub, check out RedMonk’s rankings from recently.

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