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PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?

by gjb (Vicar)
on Aug 04, 2005 at 12:00 UTC ( #480784=perlnews: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

The Register has an article on the decreasing popularity of PHP, Perl and Python among developers (or rather, the number of developers using P-P-P is decreasing).

I don't want to start a flame war, I just thought it might be of interest to PerlMonks.

Just my 2 cents, -gjb-

Comment on PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by jhourcle (Prior) on Aug 04, 2005 at 12:28 UTC

    I know nothing of Evans Data Corporation, who ran the survey in question, and I have no idea what the results were of the survey, as they want to sell the results.

    You'll note that the Register harps on how much PHP is dropping, but the survey was not global, and in fact, EDC found that PHP use in North America is growing significantly. (Perl was up as well, but less so in comparison)

    I also have no idea how these increases were calculated -- if it's based off of the total population of users, we need to also factor in how many people have been laid off or otherwise aren't considered to be part of the population. If we had the other numbers from the survey being cited, it would be much easier to tell if there might be some form of bias of this nature. (for all we know, developers are moving to management of COTS software, so their programming language 'use' is going down, but it's a factor of the nature of their jobs changing)

    I'd be interested to know what the rest of the survey was, and why Perl, PHP, Python and Fortran were in the section 'ARCHITECTURE AND TECHNOLOGY ADOPTION', while C, Java, XML and ColdFusion were in 'LANGUAGE USAGE'. (ColdFusion being similar to PHP, and XML not being a programming language)

    Unless I see the whole report, I'm going to take it with a grain of salt -- the Register took a long report, which may have known biases in their assumptions and methodologies (and may even be fully disclosed in the report), and they've taken the part that they feel is sensational, and posted it to their website to drive up traffic and ad revenue.

Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by Mutant (Priest) on Aug 04, 2005 at 16:18 UTC
    It's interesting that the statistics are about how many developers are using, or plan to use Perl. That doesn't necessarily equate to demand dropping, only supply, which is a good thing if you're a Perl programmer :)
Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by spiritway (Vicar) on Aug 05, 2005 at 04:59 UTC

    So I'm wondering several things here... First, who's paying for this survey? I note that many surveys produce results pleasing to whoever is paying for them. Second, as was already mentioned, what are the real statistics? Without some idea of the sample, you have no idea how skewed the survey might be.

    There is a small book called How to Lie With Statistics by Darrell Huff, that is most informative. He discusses many common mistakes - or outright fraud - that is presented as fact. Without the supporting information, there is no way to know how valid this survey is.

    I think that Perl, at any rate, has a bright future (of course, I'm not objective...). It is extremely useful, has an enormous archive of modules, has a long history of use, and a new version is in the works that will likely address many of the perceived shortcomings it is said to have. Moreover, the number of programmers who know Perl must be enormous. They'll continue to use it, as long as it's available (unless by some unbelievable means, something better comes along - won't happen for a long, long time, I think).

Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by adrianh (Chancellor) on Aug 05, 2005 at 09:46 UTC
    The Register has an article on the decreasing popularity of PHP, Perl and Python among developers (or rather, the number of developers using P-P-P is decreasing).

    Remember the Register is entertainment - not news ;-)

    I'm more than mildly suspicious of the results as stated.

    Seriously - do you think nobody would have noticed a 1/4 drop in PHP and Python usage? Come on!

    Actually I'm getting the opposite impression. I've just started paying attention to the job market again - and there seems be a heck of a lot more interest in dynamic languages than there was this time last year.

Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by astroboy (Chaplain) on Aug 05, 2005 at 22:48 UTC
    I'll take the results at face value. I know plenty of coders who are motivated solely by income, and they get much bigger contract rates in the J2EE market. The fact is, a lot of beginners and hobbyists have entered the "P" market (more so in the PHP and trivial Perl arena), and they drive down the rates. Increasingly script language web development is going overseas to the lowest bidders on the reverse auction sites - and they're hard to compete with if you're currency doesn't compete well with Eastern Europe/Asia. So consequently, a lot of my peers stick with the so-called enterprise languages to protect their income.
Re: PHP, Perl and Python on the wane?
by sir_lichtkind (Friar) on Aug 22, 2005 at 09:12 UTC
    and in other 3 different news(allisons blog, google zeitgeist, and tiobe index) we saw that there is perl noticed growing interest. hm. i think some kind of hype might be ovr or has an period of silence. maybe is php a bit declining due macromedia flex and because frameworks like catalyst and rails on the other hand?

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