PLEASE REVIEW THE MORE RECENT VERSION FOR FEBRUARY 2011.

About 6 months ago, I looked at the job trends for traditional programming languages again. Given the popularity of these posts, I have decided to make this a recurring theme. In the last update, I included Delphi due to the fairly high ranking it had in the TIOBE rankings. Given that previous trends, and a peek at this months trends, I have decided to remove Delphi. At best Delphi job postings have been minimal and the trends have been either flat or more likely decreasing, so it was just adding to the clutter of the charts. So, in this update we are only looking at Java, C++, C#, Objective C, Perl and Visual Basic.

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

Traditional Language Jobs - August 2010

The first thing you can see in this graph is that there is some growth in the past 6 months! This growth comes after a small downturn after late 2008. Java, C#, Perl and Objective C are all seeing nice gains. Surprisingly, Visual Basic is trending upward slightly for what seems like the largest gain in the past 5 years. C++ is mostly flat as the C# transition continues for Windows developers.

As we have seen in past job trends postsĀ SimplyHired has different short term trends:

SimplyHired Traditional Language Jobs - August 2010

This graph shows a decline from a peak in November 2009 through April 2010. However, in the past two months SimplyHired shows an upward trend similar to Indeed. The trend for VisualBasic is a little different as it continues to be flat, and there is very little growth for Objective C.

The last trend report to review is the relative scaling from Indeed. This provides an interesting trend graph based on job growth:

Relative Job Growth - August 2010

These trends are significantly more interesting because it is based on growth as opposed to absolute number of job postings. Three major points of interest are obvious. Objective C is growing rapidly now that the iPod, iPhone and iPad share a common operating system in iOS. C# is also showing significant growth when compared to the other languages as well. C++ and Visual Basic trail the others as C++ continues a downward trend while Visual Basic has a small uptick in the past few months.

What does all this mean? Well, Java is still a solid choice when looking to get a job and it continues to grow. C# is growing but does not seem to be replacing C++ as it is only slightly decreasing in demand. Perl refuses to go away and even grows a little. I am also curious if the change in trend for Visual Basic is any indication of the future. Lastly, Objective C will continue to be an interesting trend to follow over the next year as development for the various Apple devices converges into a single OS with only differences in presentation.

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