Consolation prize

Stack Overflow stands between Kotlin and Top 40 programming languages list

Gabriela Motroc

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Kotlin might play in the big leagues now but this is surely not a unanimous decision. Although this programming language caught the attention of TIOBE and RedMonk, the road to success is paved with challenges. One of them is Stack Overflow.

According to RedMonk’s programming language rankings for June 2017, Kotlin is not even in the Top 20 programming languages. Why are they bothering to mention it then? Because its journey this year has been spectacular.

#46 is just a number: Kotlin is … the king of our hearts!?

Stephen O’Grady, an industry analyst with RedMonk explained in the blog post announcing this month’s rankings that they don’t usually talk about languages ranked #46 on their board but Kotlin’s journey is no ordinary story, especially since Google chose this language as a first-class language on Android.

Since RedMonk snapshot data as of the first of June, this language had exactly fifteen days to take advantage of its new title as the tech giant’s alternative to Swift, according to O’Grady. Even so, Kotlin went from #50 to #46. Still not impressed?

First, let’s take into consideration the fact that Kotlin spent last year at #65 on RdMonk’s rankings and in just one month (January 2017), it jumped 15 spots to a new milestone: #50.

If you look at the Stack Overflow chart from our look at the language, it’s clear that the “low-key buzz” Steve Yegge referred to was real and measurable. If we date not from Android’s decision, then, but from the early unannounced interest in the language, we’re looking at a 19 point jump.

SEE ALSO: Kotlin future features survey results: What to keep and what to toss

Weighed down by Stack Overflow

Kotlin may still be far away from Top 20 or even Top 40 but let’s see why. O’Grady explained that the culprit behind its position is Stack Overflow. RedMonk’s rankings originally placed Kotlin 39th but everything changed once they discovered that this language occupied the 60th position on Stack Overflow. The industry analyst added that these numbers might indicate that even though people explore and write in Kotlin behind the scenes, they are “not discussing it much in public.”

However, now that Kotlin is a first-class citizen on Android, things might start to change. How fast, you ask? That’s a question we cannot answer.  In the meantime, let’s be happy that in JAXenter’s 2017 most popular programming languages surveyKotlin cozied up in the top 10 before Go, DSLs, Python, Groovy, and Rust — a remarkable result.

JAXenter: Programming languages trends 2017

Last year, Kotlin wasn’t even on our radar — that’s why the language is MIA in the 2016 survey. Are you impressed with Kotlin now? If not, this should do the trick.

Why you should learn Kotlin — Small preview

  • At this year’s Google I/O, the Android team announced Kotlin as an official language for Android apps development.
  • Many companies like Netflix, Uber, Trello, Pinterest, Corda etc. are using Kotlin (along with other programming languages) to create applications.
  • The number of lines of code increased from 2.1 million to 10 million in an interval of one year (2016 to 2017).
  • Though the majority of progress has been made on Java and Android, it’s not a Java/Android language. It can compile many Kotlin projects to JS. Similarly, Kotlin/Native is under progress that compiles Kotlin directly to machine code.


Gabriela Motroc
Gabriela Motroc was editor of and JAX Magazine. Before working at Software & Support Media Group, she studied International Communication Management at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

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Amin Bakhtiyari
Amin Bakhtiyari
3 years ago

thank you :)