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A poll on git commands Usage

sarathsantoshdamaraju profile image Krishna Damaraju ・2 min read

Its always good to see the charts and bars of the tech surveys. They inspire and motivate me to learn new things and gives an overview of what developers are using all over the world.

If you are someone like me who follows the surveys closely and with a thought - "why don't they conduct a survey for this?". This is a survey came out of such thought.

We developers use git every day and did it ever occurred to you what could be the most used command in git ?. You could say git commit, maybe, I don't know and I don't have enough proof to support your statement. And I have tried searching for it and couldn't get a solid data-backed evidence (Maybe I would have missed something, post in the comments if you have exactly what I am looking for).

So I made a survey to ask developers to list the most used git commands in their day-to-day routines. This may not be a big deal for you and only takes less than 2 minutes to complete. So, I request every one of you, who knows and uses git to take this survey and at the end you can actually see the responses from other people. Isn't great? 😏

Take the Survey

P.S: Please don't fill if you have already filled or don't fill with random values.

You can ask, "what do I get out of this?" -

  1. To see what commands are used more frequently by developers all around the globe.
  2. To give you insight on what commands you use very often
  3. To help beginners kickstart the learning process by providing them with the most used commands in the industry.
  4. And to satisfy my curiosity by solid data-backed evidence.😁

I will update this blog with survey results by 25/07/18. I guess a week would be enough, what do you guys think?

And finally, If you don't follow developer surveys, here are a few things to start with

  1. https://insights.stackoverflow.com/survey/2018
  2. https://about.gitlab.com/developer-survey/2018/

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Discussion

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Single best article I’ve ever read about Git is Understanding Git Conceptually.

Once read, everything just clicked in my head and I finally understood what all these commands did, how to use them intelligently and responsibly, and most of all I was able to understand and fix all of our team’s branching issues that’d take us dozens of minutes to figure out each time they appeared.

Also, and I like that, it doesn’t take you by the hand and tell you “Here are the commands you need, full stop, just don’t do silly stuff and everything will be fine.” It grabs you by the shirt, tells you the hard truth:

“You can only really use Git if you understand how Git works. Merely memorizing which commands you should run at what times will work in the short run, but it’s only a matter of time before you get stuck or, worse, break something.”

 

Agreed. Stack Overflow would occasionally get questions (though it's less common these days) along the lines of, "I worked 5 years at my last job developing code managed in Subversion, but at my new job they use git..." or "We want to move our codebase from [some commercial centralized VC] to Github"..." always ending with "What are the differences between the thing I know and git, and what are the equivalent git commands for the steps/functions/operations I know how to perform in the old system?"

If the person asking that question is unlucky, someone would do them a disservice and answer it as asked. When the only right answer, really, is to explain that git is fundamentally a completely different paradigm from systems like CVS, svn, and the like. The worst way someone can approach git is from the mindset of learning how to apply their centralized-VC patterns with git. They'll be constantly surprised by the results of their actions, constantly confused why things are so much harder and more complicated than they should be, and never even glimpse the true power and beauty of how git is MEANT to work.

New paradigms require new understanding, throwing away everything we think we know and re-learning from the ground up. That's the only way to approach git if you're going to have any hope of eventually understanding it.

 

Thanks for sharing @elarcis , I totally agree with you and infact this reminds me of the mistakes that I did initially when I started working with git, with out properly understanding it. And I will read the mentioned docs for sure. Can you take the survey and mention the same article in the Survey too. Ignore if you have already given it. :)

 

I found this survey very confusing!

Firstly, it was asking about the frequency of using commands, but the options were only checkboxes or radio buttons. I answered as if the question was "do you regularly use" but it could as easily have been "have you ever used" or "do you use most frequently".

Secondly some things with checkboxes sounded mutually exclusive, such as

Do you prefer to use if git has combo commands (Like a command to add and commit selected files at once)?

which has checkboxes for both yes and no. I checked both, because I use such combo commands for some purposes and prefer explicit separate commands for others, but I feel that might not be how you will interpret the results.

If not Terminal, How else do you use git ?

has radio buttons. What if I use git in more than one way?

Why are some commands, like log, in there more than once? They're in separate sections, but will their results be aggregated? Will me selecting log in more than one place skew the results?

I found out how it was being aggregated (or not) after completing the survey, meaning I didn't know what I didn't know.

As others have said, could you remove the name/email address section from the results?

 

Thanks Ben for pointing out these small mistakes. I fixed all of them except repetitive commands like log, diff.. though they are same commands but Listing them under the specific operation gives more detailed info on what cases people are using them.

 

@Sarath Damaraju Please PM ASAP. I did not realize my email address would be public

 

I agree - this should be right before the survey link or in the survey itself.

Pro-tip: 1000s of fake emails :)

 

Totally agree, but the reason behind collecting email was to update the participants about the survey. I have to find an other way now I guess. 😅

 

@sarathsantoshdamaraju I want you to DM me so hopefully you can remove my email address from the list.

 

Hey @stargator , I have removed the email fields completely from the form.

I must have over looked it, sorry for the trouble. 😅

 

Single Best article I read: atlassian.com/git/tutorials/rewrit...

Once I understood that, it made me understand Git a lot!