Python: Most Studied Language Among Developers

Python is the most-studied language among developers, with 27 percent of respondents to a recent JetBrains survey saying they’ve either started or continued to learn it in the past year.

While Python isn’t the most-used language among those developers/respondents (that honor goes to JavaScript), or the most popular primary programming language (Java), it hints at how Python remains a toolbox staple for developers everywhere.

Some 49 percent of respondents used Python in the past year, and another 9 percent plan to integrate it into their workflows at some point. That puts it on nearly the same level as programming stalwarts such as Java, JavaScript, and SQL—and well ahead of up-and-comers such as Kotlin (which only 16 percent used in the past year), Swift (11 percent), and Go (18 percent).

This is yet another sign that, if you’re looking for a programming language to learn, you could do far worse than Python. The language recently leapt from fourth to third place in TIOBE’s monthly rankings of programming-language popularity, placing it just behind Java and C (and ahead of C++, Visual Basic .NET, and C#). That’s a big deal, since it’s difficult for programming languages near the top of TIOBE’s list to drop (or climb) ranks, given the sheer amount of developer abandonment (or adoption) required to do so.

“If Python can keep this pace, it will probably replace C and Java in 3 to 4 years’ time, thus becoming the most popular programming language of the world,” added the note accompanying TIOBE’s ranking update. “The main reason for this is that software engineering is booming.”

Indeed, Python has a variety of uses. In addition to building apps and operating-system components, it’s also become quite the tool for data analysis, and researchers have turned to it for projects involving artificial intelligence and machine learning.

For those interested in learning to develop in Python (and aren’t already enrolled in a program or class), check out our helpful page of links to various guides and downloads. When learning a new language, community is important, and fortunately there are many groups for Python language enthusiasts, including PyLadies, an international mentorship group focusing on helping women become active participants in the community, as well as several language-related internet relay chat (IRC) channels. Good luck!

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