Last week Stackoverflow released their annual developer survey. One of the most impressive things about this survey is the number of respondents who participated, 64,000, which is probably the largest developer survey in the world.
Looking at the emerging technologies in the software development world can give a valuable insight into potential trends that you will need to learn in the not to distant future. In today's article, I'm going to summarise some of this report in terms in relation to the web and hopefully give you some food for thought about future considerations you may want to think about for your business.
The Most Popular Language
Over the past decade, companies have had to deal with a quicker rate of change in technology than ever before. In the past decade, things like smartphones and apps have come out, responsive websites frameworks have been created to cater for the variety of devices someone might be viewing your product on, faster computers and internet connections have meant more things are possible that weren't 10 years ago, changing operating systems and web servers which provide functionality that wasn't previously possible, better project methodology tools, lessons learned from past website mistakes, cloud hosting and finally dev-ops, are usually all considerations now when planning a new web project.
Instead of having to write and maintain different code bases for your mobile app and your website, you can write a single API and consume that data. Instead of needing to do a massive ground-up rewrite, you may only need to change a single service that has minimal impact on the rest of your website.
It's easy to see how companies get into these situations. They build a product that slowly evolves over time, as more features get added and the customer base expands. New features are needed quickly in order to help the company make money. Things get built quickly to meet current needs and then at some point critical mass occurs where the amount of legacy code, fixes and bandages gets so big it prevents the company from implementing new features and competing with rivals anymore. At that stage, the website needs a ground-up rewrite because it's a complete mess.
What Language Should I Learn?
I've interviewed a lot of JS people recently and my first step was to explain the project briefly and get them to recommend a JS approach. Each one had a completely different answer. Some were HTML 'purists' and answered in terms of minimal frameworks and minimal page load size, these people fell into the make everything bespoke category.
Before I delve into the most popular JS frameworks, I thought I'd write the above statement as a warning. Just because something is popular and in-demand now, this is very likely to change next year. In terms of specific technologies, Node.js, AngularJS, React and Cordova are the current flavors of the month. The most wanted skills are Node.js, AngularJS and React. So if you want to create a web technology, looking into Angular and React would be a sensible idea.
Other Lessons Learnt?