The latest TIOBE Programming Community Index has been released. I don’t put a lot of weight into surveys like this, especially if I don’t know the methodology behind it. As far as I can tell it’s based on the popularity of different programming languages as found on the web. I guess it’s an all right measure and it co-incides somewhat with my personal observations.

At any rate, Java comes out on top with a 20% rating which is up 2% from a year ago which is healthy. I’d like to believe the popularity of Eclipse as a tools and application platform has something to do with that.

C was second at close to 15% which is down 1/4%. I still see a whole lot of C, especially in the GNU/Linux community. Almost everything there is still C. And, of course, C is still huge in embedded.

C++ was fifth at close to 10% and a drop of 3/4%. I think C++’s complexity is really hurting it. C++ is built for large scale applications. But Java and C#/VisualBasic (which are 8th and 3rd in the ranking) with their automated memory management are probably better suited for that. Which is too bad since I still believe C++ with its generic programming support is still the most powerful language in common use today.

One thing to consider is that the two languages that CDT supports add up to 25% which makes it top of the heap (see, you can craft any message you want with stats :). But it is pretty obvious that JDT has much more share of the Java market than we do with the C/C++ market. But we’re trying.

One thing I did notice with this survey too is that the variety of languages being used is growing over the last five years. I wonder if that speaks to unrest we’re having with the languages we have at our disposal. C++ is too complicated, Java is too simple, C doesn’t scale, C# is too Microsoft, Basic is too, well, basic. I think the time is coming for something new to rejuvenate us like objects did two decades ago. I wonder what it’ll be.