Traditional Programming Language Job Trends – August 2011

Once again, it is time for the job trends for traditional programming languages. Just like the last update, we are only looking at Java, C++, C#Objective CPerl and Visual Basic. I know people will complain about some other language not being included or whether “traditional” is bad terminology, but this is what I have for now. Without further ado, let’s look at the trends.

First, here is a look at the job trends from

Most of the job trends seem to have stabilized in the past 6 months. Given that most of the trends look this way, I can only guess that this is economy related. C++ continues its downward trend, though C# has not really shown gains in the past few months. Surprisingly, Visual Basic does have a slight upward trend, though it does not show rapid gains. Objective-C continues its growth as iOS development gains more adoption. Java, C# and Perl remain fairly steady. Basically, it looks like mobile development could be spurring on some growth, but the industry seems to be waiting for the economy again.

Now, let’s look at SimplyHired’s short term trends:

SimplyHired’s trends are similar to Indeed, but there are some significant differences. First, C++ is showing solid gains the past few months, along with C# and Visual Basic. Java and Perl are fairly steady, though Perl is showing a slight downward trend over the 18 months. Objective-C is not showing the same type of gains as the Indeed trends, though it is definitely growing over the past year.

Finally, here is a review of the relative scaling from Indeed. This provides an interesting trend graph based on job growth:

Objective-C continues to see huge growth, with a minor downtrend back in the winter. C# growth is solid, though relative to Objective-C it does not seem like much but it is sitting at 100% growth. Java and Perl growth is fairly steady, but they are mature languages and will not show the same type of growth as Objective-C. The fact that they are still growing shows that the industry is still growing overall, which is good for developers. C++ is slowly declining which is a newer overall trend, and Visual Basic is still declining, but not as steeply as 18 months ago.

What does all this mean? First, it is clear the iOS development is hot and Objective-C will continue its rapid rise unless another language gets first-class support, though that is highly doubtful. Mobile is the future of application development, but surprisingly, Java is not really seeing a surge in demand with Android development. The C++ decline just shows the continued transition to C#, while the Visual Basic decline is interesting mostly for the historical perspective.

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