11 Oct Coding Languages – Who uses them and why?

We have talked before about how coding languages (just like spoken languages!) evolve over time and their uses and users change.

With so much flux, it raises questions about individual companies’ preferences: For instance, which companies use Javascript? Who uses Python? And where is CSS3 used? And why do these languages (and other popular ones) have such a foothold?

This is by no means a definitive guide to every use of every major language in the software industry, but it’s an indication of the prevalence of some languages, why they’re so popular and which way the wind is blowing when it comes to major tech titans’ hiring preferences.

It might be easier to list companies that don’t use this language! Javascript is the most popular coding language in the world right now, favoured by Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Yelp!, Slack and over 10,000 companies around the world.

Just about any website you see every day uses it: Regardless of what the company uses on a site’s back-end, their front end will use Javascript. The language makes a site more dynamic – allowing for more diverse imagery, videos, buttons and general functionality.It’s versatile, adaptable and relevant (compatible with all major browsers), which goes some way to explaining its ubiquity.

Just as commonplace as Javascript, but more iconic, HTML5 is the latest iteration of the famous markup language. A markup language surrounds text to make it work on a web page, and HTML is so well known that you probably know that it looks </like this>!

Along with CSS (which we’ll discuss below) and Javascript, HMTL5 is one of the three cornerstones of building a modern website. And as you’d expect, it would be hard to find a company that has a website and that doesn’t use the famous language.

As you might’ve guessed from the name, this is the third version of CSS. Cascading Style Sheets make web content visually appealing. And, like HTML5 and Javascript, CSS3 is a tool that can be seen on every corner of the net (and countless apps too).

Any software developer will be expected to have a working knowledge of each of the three pillars of web development; Javascript, HTML and CSS.

Additionally, since coding is constantly evolving, some languages see their popularity rise, such as…

Python, which we’ve written about separately, is a multi-purpose language. It was invented in the 1980s, but has been evolving ever since and has seen its popularity skyrocket in recent years. Its inventor, Guido Van Rossum, created it before he started working for Google (where it’s in use) and he’s now employed at Dropbox.

Python (yes, named after Monty Python) is a beloved language, including on our course, partly because it’s relatively intuitive and easy to learn. It’s been embraced across the industry and by titans such as Yahoo, YouTube (which is owned by Google), IBM and NASA among many others.

The Who and the Why
When it comes to learning coding languages, there are a few things to remember: Yes, popularity is an obvious factor when learning. But it’s also wise to keep an eye on trends, on who uses the languages, and why they do.

Additionally (and some of you might not want to hear this part) because languages are constantly evolving, you’ll probably have to build on your skills as career demands change. This might mean learning additional languages or skills, or building up your existing expertise.

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