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Trends on Open-source, DevOps, ML and more

Developer Nation
Our mission is to champion a global collective of software creators who are confident in their technology choices and feel included in the conversation about the future of the ecosystem.
・3 min read

Our mission in SlashData is not only to help the world understand developers but for developers to understand the world too. During each survey wave we ask developers and communities of developers around the world to share their opinions and preferences. We make sure they are being heard and that they impact the decisions of tech companies. On top of that, the survey, the dashboards we create once results are in and the State of the Developer Nation report we publish after each survey wave, are great means for devs to benchmark themselves and see which skills they need to develop.

During the latest survey wave, from November 2019 to February 2020, we reached more than 17,000 developers, in 159 countries and we gathered the most interesting insights on Programming Language communities, Contributing to Open-Source software, DevOps Participants and Adoption, Machine Learning, Augmented & Virtual Reality & Emerging Technologies. Let’s have a look:

Languages are a beloved subject of debate and the kernels of some of the strongest developer communities:

  • JavaScript remains the most popular programming language, with more than 12M developers worldwide using it.
  • Python added 2.2M net new developers in 2018 and surpassed Java in terms of popularity. It is now the second largest programming language community overall.
  • Kotlin is the fastest growing language community. It nearly doubled in size in the past two years.

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Open-source software is a central part of the developer world. Not only does every category of developer tools have open-source alternatives, but some areas are completely dominated by open source offerings:

  • 3 out of 5 developers contribute to open-source software.
  • Developers are most motivated to contribute to open-source projects either to improve coding skills (29%) or due to the belief in the benefits of open source (26%).
  • Almost half of open-source contributors expect companies to support and contribute to open-source communities.

While the adoption of DevOps is an important chapter in the evolution of software development and has gained significant traction, it still is not part of the typical developer's build protocol:

  • Developers using CI/CD tools are 20% more likely to be professional developers.
  • 58% of developers using CI/CD tools work for firms with more than 10 people involved in software development.

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Machine learning (ML) powers an increasing number of applications and services which we use daily. For some organisations and data scientists, it is not just about generating business insights or training predictive models anymore:

  • While amateurs are less likely to leverage cloud computing infrastructures than professional ML developers, they are as likely as professionals to run their code on hardware other than CPU.
  • ML developers working with big data and deep learning frameworks are more likely to deploy their code on hybrid and multi-clouds.
  • ML developers involved in data ingestion are more likely to run their code on private clouds and on-premise servers, while those involved in model deployment make heavier use of public clouds to deploy their machine learning solutions.

Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) have captured the public imagination for decades. Recently, however, AR & VR processing has become commonplace on smartphones and companies like Oculus & Sony have released consumer-quality headsets:

  • Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) practitioners are in the majority passionate hobbyists with a diverse set of interests and skills.
  • The majority (57%) of AR and VR hobbyists work professionally in at least one other development area.
  • 22% of AR & VR non-developers are learning how to code. The most popular languages for this group are Java, C++ and C#.

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We have tracked developers' engagement and adoption of different technologies asking about what they are working on, learning about, interested in or not interested in each **emerging technology*:

  • Most developers (59%) are engaged with DevOps and 27% of these are currently working on projects involving DevOps.
  • Fog/Edge computing has seen one of the largest increases in engagement and adoption in the previous twelve months.

Interested to find out more about the developer nation? You can download our State of the Developer Nation report, 18th Edition here.

If you want to support our efforts and help shape the Developer Ecosystem, our next survey wave is coming up in June. Sign up to our community to get a survey invite when we launch. You also get to participate in our prize draws after the survey closes!

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