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Web And Scripting Programming Language Job Trends — August 2013

By Rob Diana
Staff Writer
Article Date: August 28, 2013

The next installment of the August job trends is for “web and scripting languages”. This list currently includes Ruby, Python, PHP, JavaScript, Groovy and Erlang. I looked at including Clojure during this update, but the demand still needs to increase a bit. If you think I should be including another language, please let me know in the comments.

First, let’s look at the trends from Indeed.com:

WebAnd Scripting Language Trends - August 2013

For some reason, JavaScript took a huge hit in demand during 2012, but is seeing solid growth again in the first half of 2013. Typically, this kind of correction is more due to how Indeed calculates the trends than true dips in demand. There likely was some decrease given the trends for each of these languages, but not as much as is shown. Some of the other languages are seeing some increase as well. Python has overtaken PHP, which is relatively flat this year. Ruby is showing a similar increasing trend to Python, but remains 4th in this list. Groovy and Erlang are increasing a small amount though you can not determine that from this graph.

Now onto the short-term trends from SimplyHired.com:

Web And Scripting Language Trends - SimplyHired August 2013

The trend data for SimplyHired is now 10 months old, actually older than our last update in February. I have included the graph mainly to show its age, but it is likely that SimplyHired trends will be removed in later updates.

Lastly, we look at the relative growth trends from Indeed.com. This compares percentage growth as opposed to percentage of all postings:

Web And Scripting Language Growth - August 2013

Groovy may not have a lot of overall demand, but the graph shows that it is still growing like a weed. Erlang is also showing very strong growth, but if you look at a graph without Groovy, you can see that the growth is not consistent. Ruby continues to show solid growth, staying around 5000% for the past two years. Even though you cannot see the trends for Python very well, it is still growing near 1000% for the past two years. PHP and JavaScript have similar growth trends, decreasing in 2012 and staying flat during 2013. PHP is sitting around 250% and JavaScript at 150%.

Overall, the demand is either staying flat or growing slowly in 2013. This is much better than the trends in 2012. These trends mirror those trends from the traditional languages. The big difference here is that these languages are growing much faster than the traditional languages. Based on the buzz on blogs, Python and Ruby continue to be used in many startups, while typical enterprise languages like Java are rare in startups. The growth and demand patterns also show that many companies are likely moving to a polyglot model. Maybe the enterprise or batch side of an application is written in Java, but the consumer web application starts in Ruby or Python.

Lastly, I will be reviewing all of the programming language trends over the next few months to determine the best way to slice and dice this information. I will not be including SimplyHired any longer if the trends data is not updated and I would like to look at other data points as well. Hopefully I get the time to change things before the next batch of updates.


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