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Java beats Python to remain the most popular programming language around

(Image credit: Kevin Ku / Pexels)

The three most popular programming languages are Java, JavaScript and Python but a new survey from JetBrains has revealed that Java has retained its top spot among developers.

To compile its new State of Developer Ecosystem 2020 report, the IDE maker surveyed almost 20,000 developers to identify the latest trends when it comes to programming languages, tools and technologies.

While Java remains the most popular programming language around, JetBrains found that JavaScript is the most used language.

As part of its fourth annual Developer Ecosystem Survey, the company asked developers to choose up to three languages that they consider to be their primary programming language. Although Java is the most popular overall, in this context JavaScript took the top spot at 39 percent followed by Java (37%) and Python (31%).

In an interview with The Register, JetBrains said that one of the reasons Java is the most popular programming language is because a lot of developers use JavaScript as part of a project. However, while they use JavaScript in their projects, developers don't spend most of their time working with it.

Rising programming languages

JetBrains' report also showed that Python has managed to overtake Java when it comes to languages used in the past year. The growth of machine learning is one of the reasons behind this and Python was actually the most-studied language according to developers with almost a third of respondents beginning to or continuing to study it last year.

Developers are also increasingly using Microsoft's TypeScript to work with large JavaScript codebases. Use of the programming language has grown significantly and in fact, it is now the primary language of for 12 percent of developers.

When it comes to adopting new languages, developers plan to adopt Google's system programming language Go, JetBrains' Kotlin and Python. Mozilla's system programming language Rust came in fourth place on the list of planned languages followed by TypeScript, Apple's Swift and Google's Dart.

Via ZDNet