It was the first great serious language for the Internet, driven by the promise of running everywhere. The desktops never surrendered to the server farms, but the introductory programming classes did. Today it lives on in the hearts of Android programmers.
Other language of choice: Pascal
Special skill: Creating extralong variable names in camel case so that the code is self-documenting
Social media strategy: Attends local Java Users Group meeting each month; checks Java.net account for new meetings
Other career choice: Y2K programmer
Clothing: Java One polo shirt
Rhetorical tic: "The JVM will just handle it in another thread."
Car: Mazda Miata
Song: Talking Heads' "Wild Wild Life"
Favorite artifact: Something signed by Jim Gosling
They fell in love with Java but remained loyal to Microsoft, perhaps because the boss insisted on keeping it a Microsoft shop. The code looks similar. The idioms work the same way. It's pretty much the same as Java, but with a few nice fixes worked into the mix.
Other language of choice: .Net
Special skill: Navigating the .Net documentation
Social media strategy: Wondering whether Skype counts as social media
Other career choice: Starbucks barista
Clothing: Freebie Windows 98 tennis cap
Rhetorical tic: "It's really more efficient than the JVM."
Car: Toyota Prius
Song: Nirvana's "Come As You Are"
Favorite artifact: A Windows 8 phone
Other language of choice: HTML
Special skill: Remembering to put the function between script tags
Social media strategy: Going to a friend's GeoCities page
Other career choice: Chain restaurant manager
Rhetorical tic: "It works on IE 5.5 but not 6.0 yet."
Clothing: Parachute pants
Car: Ford Taurus
Song: Beastie Boys' "So What'cha Want"
Favorite artifact: Netscape Share Certificate
Ruby on Rails programmers
It takes all of 10 minutes to wrap a nice website around MySQL, then years to fiddle with it. The Ruby language offers a clean, low-punctuation syntax, while the Rails framework makes it easy to type the smallest files around. It's almost as if it were designed by carpal-tunnel sufferers.
Other language of choice: SQL
Special skill: Getting your stack to run on JRuby
Social media strategy: Writing a personal version of Facebook in 20 lines of code
Other career choice: Molecular gastronomist
Clothing: Plaid shirt and jeans
Rhetorical tic: "You just need a few tables and you're done."
Song: "The Rails Song"
Favorite artifact: 37 Signals T-shirt
Objective-C programmers (second generation)
The second generation of Objective-C lovers appeared during the app gold rush after Apple opened up the iPhone to apps written by outsiders. Suddenly a language slowly dying was reborn.
Special skill: Figuring out how to make the layout manager work
Social media strategy: Posts pictures to Instagram and Hipstamatic but never uses words
Other career choice: Mortgage foreclosure processor
Rhetorical tic: "This will sell millions."
Song: Feist's "1234" or anything else chosen for an Apple commercial
Favorite artifact: iPod with a wheel
Other language of choice: jQuery
Special skill: Closures
Social media strategy: Waiting for App.net
Other career choice: Working as a barista
Rhetorical tic: "There's an open source jQuery plug-in that does it."
Car: Fixed-gear bicycle
Song: M83, "Midnight City"
Favorite artifact: DM from Brendan Eich