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Best programming languages for getting a job in 2020

Eugene Filipyev, Senior Software Engineer at AllStars-IT Ukraine, wrote this article based on his subjective opinion, experience, and research he has done on this topic.

Programming is one of the most popular professions nowadays. More and more people want to become a software engineer. And it’s not just about students, but also about already held mature people who decided to change their occupation.

The most common question among beginners is a programming language to learn. There are plenty of various languages. Some of them were in demand yesterday but were losing relevance today. Each of them is good for solving one type of problem but is not so useful in others. So how not to blunder and select the right one?

In this article, we will cover perspective programming languages from different areas: web/mobile/desktop applications, game development, data science, and machine learning. They will be relevant in the next five, and most likely ten years.  The main selection criteria were: high demand, strong community, stable future, learning materials abundance, and decent salary. So let us dive into the best programming languages for getting a job in 2020!

JavaScript

Entry threshold: Low

Application: Web, Mobile, Desktop, Game Development

There is no alternative to JavaScript on the Web nowadays. All modern web applications are written using JS. With the advent of such frameworks like Angular, Vue, React, and Ember this programming language became even more popular. According to Stack Overflow rating, JavaScript is the most commonly used programming language.

It’s a rapidly developed language: besides new features adding, JavaScript has made the expansion of other areas: high performant server-side applications (NodeJS),  desktop software (Electron), IOS/Android applications (React Native, Flutter, Ionic, NativeScript), game development (Phaser, BabylonJS, Pixi.js).

TypeScript has breathed fresh life into JavaScript by adding types, strictness, readability, and maintainability.

Python

Entry threshold: Low

Application: Web, Desktop, Data Science, Machine Learning

The first word that is coming to my mind talking about Python is elegance. Its’ code is like a fiction: easy to read and understand. This language allows writing complex code in a few lines. Due to its simplicity, it is easily mastered even by beginners.

Python is the most popular language according to the PYPL index and the fastest-growing major programming language today in Stack Overflow rating.

It is actively used for web development (Django, Flask), data science (Kaggle, Pandas, NumPy, Seaborn), machine learning (TensorFlow, Keras, Theano), desktop GUI applications (PyQT, PyJs, PyGUI), and processes automatization. With Python, you are able to build a neural network with minimal knowledge of mathematics and algorithms.

YouTube video hosting, the social network Instagram and the media platform Pinterest are built using Python. Every day more and more startups choose it as the main development tool.

C# / .Net

Entry threshold: Moderate

Application: Web, Mobile, Desktop, Game Development, Machine Learning

Yesterday C# was just a language for building desktop applications for Windows only.  But today this language got powerful tools that allow building highly efficient web servers, mobile native cross-platform applications (Xamarine), games (Unity, CryEngine, Unreal Engine, Monogame). Using ML.NET you can easily integrate custom machine learning models into your applications.

The language is well integrated into the Microsoft infrastructure, easy to build and deploy on Azure, and has great documentation.

With .NET Core, you are able to create cross-platform cloud-based applications for all popular operating systems: Windows, macOS, Linux. C# and .Net are increasingly used for building large-scale enterprise applications. It holds steady in the top 5 of both TIOBE and PYPL indexes.

Java

Entry threshold: Moderate

Application: Web, Mobile, Desktop, Machine Learning

Java is the enterprise standard programming language. It’s widely used in huge corporations for creating desktop software, high-performant and scalable web applications (Spring, JEE, Vert.x), mobile development for Android (Android Studio), and machine learning (Weka, Java-ML, Apache Mahout, Deeplearning4j).

This language is not new; during its existence, numerous products have been developed that need support and enhancement. With Java, you definitely will not be left without work.

Java is on top of the TIOBE rating but slowly-slowly losing the advantage according to the PYPL index and GitHub Octoverse. Python, C#, Kotlin become more popular among developers, so think well before picking Java as a lifetime programming language.

Kotlin

Entry threshold: Moderate

Application: Web, Mobile, Desktop

If you are interested in mobile development for Android, then Kotlin is a programming language you should start to invest your time in. Kotlin is a rookie in the programming world, but it has gained an astounding amount of popularity among developers in the past two years. It’s one of the most loved programming languages according to the Stack Overflow rating.

It predominantly used for Android development nowadays. Besides mobile applications, Kotlin allows creating web and desktop ones. JetBrains is currently working on adding the embedded system and IOS support as well, making Kotlin a language for all programming areas.

It is 100% interoperable with Java. It will give you the ability to migrate easily Java applications to Kotlin. Its code is more concise, safer, and has better support for functional programming.

Swift

Entry threshold: Moderate

Application: Mobile, Desktop

Swift is when we are talking about a programming language for creating awesome applications for Apple devices: macOS,  iPadOS, iOS, watchOS, tvOS and beyond.

It’s a modern language designed to replace Objective-C. Swift has got more interactive code, and a concise English-like syntax which makes it highly readable, which makes it easier to learn for beginners or for anyone coming from another programming language.

Swift has absorbed the best features of all programming languages. It’s really fast, safe and expressive. The design itself encourages developers to write clean code. As a result, Swift is among the most loved programming languages according to the Stack Overflow survey.

Summary

It’s doesn’t matter which language you will choose. Only your motivation combined with hard work will make you closer to the software engineer position. If this is something exotic – then why not? There are no unclaimed programmers.

Hope you will get a dream job in 2020. Good luck with your journey!

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