Popularity has nothing on satisfaction

Language satisfaction check-up: Python in the fast lane, Java *still* the language you love to hate

Gabriela Motroc
© Shutterstock / Sichon

ActiveState’s report on developers’ satisfaction with programming languages (and not only!) is here. We take a look at the list to see who’s winning the satisfaction contest: Python’s continued dominance, a jump for Go and JavaScript, and a drop for Java.

ActiveState, a company that builds open source languages and now has a platform for certifying and resolving, ran a developer survey earlier this year with the goal of better understanding open source runtime.

Although the methodology remains undisclosed, they had a total of 1,407 responses from 92 countries. The data gathered from the responses helps the company measure and track progress towards solving open source runtime pains that developers are currently experiencing.

The results can be found here

Who’s winning the satisfaction contest?

I don’t know about you but I was under the impression that developers spend a great deal of time programming. This is just a myth, of course, as we can see from the results of this report. Out of 1,407 respondents, 37 percent claim they only spend 2-4 hours a day programming. Of those surveyed, it seems that ML engineers spend over eight hours a day programming.

As far as respondents’ satisfaction with certain programming languages is concerned, it seems that when we combine the results tagged as very satisfied or greater, Python takes the lead, followed by Go and JavaScript.

We made a list of five programming languages but if you’re interested in other languages, make sure to download the results as they contain respondents’ level of satisfaction with 23 languages.

Respondents are most satisfied with:

Python: 68 percent

Go: 61 percent

JavaScript: 51 percent

Kotlin: 47 percent

Java: 39 percent

Another interesting result is that 61 percent of respondents start a new project at least once a quarter. 23 percent have a new project every month and 14 percent do that twice a year. Only 12 percent start new projects on a weekly basis.

Is this good news or bad news? We welcome your comments (in the comments section).

SEE ALSO: Will Python dethrone Java this year? Programming language rankings say yes

As far as the time spent managing dependencies or dev tools is concerned, 73 percent spend either part or most of their time doing just that. 25 percent claim they rarely spend time managing dependencies or dev tools.

Furthermore, it seems that 54 percent of the respondents encounter issues when building a library or package and 29 percent almost never have problems. However, 15 percent claim they encounter issues most of the time.

Speaking of issue and challenges, adding or incorporating a language into an organization is the top challenge among respondents; 56 percent of respondents rate this as very difficult or difficult. As it turns out, only 18 percent of respondents consider reproducible builds very difficult or difficult. Going back to the discussion about languages, a whopping 67 percent of respondents would choose not to add a new programming language if the pain outshines the benefits. It’s safe to assume now that adding a (new) language into an organization is no easy task.

There are a lot of interesting results so I encourage you to download the report and weigh in on the results.

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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