The watchword of IT today is to make the most of what you've got. Developers are no exception, according to the results of this year's InfoWorld Programming Survey. We asked people who build enterprise applications to tell us how they did business in today's economy, and the response was resounding: Stick with the competencies you have and increase your investment in those tools and technologies that have proven their value to your organization.
To compile our research, we gathered responses from 467 software development professionals, ranging from C-level executives to IT managers to front-line coders. While our research yielded few jaw-dropping surprises, it does point toward some interesting trends. In many ways, our results mirrored those of last year's survey, in which Web-based interfaces were king and scripting languages such as Python and Perl gave a strong showing despite industry hype surrounding the high-end development platforms from Microsoft and Sun Microsystems.
In addition to the topics we raised last year, we added some new themes to the mix. Given today's tendency to demand increased return from existing investments, we wanted to find out to which technologies companies were most committed, and where they actually planned to increase their expenditures during the next 12 months.
What's more, we wanted to know to what extent the companies we surveyed planned to take advantage of offshore outsourcing -- and the results may surprise you.
Languages and Scripting
It should come as no surprise that the Java and Windows platforms continue to dominate the developer market this year, as they have in the past. In keeping with last year's results, fully 64 percent of respondents cite Java as their preferred language of choice, with Visual Basic coming in second at 56 percent.
Microsoft tops the list of preferred vendors, with 80 percent of those surveyed acknowledging that Redmond supplies some of their development tools. The next three vendors on the list -- Oracle, IBM, and Sun, in that order -- primarily supply tools for Java development.
C and C++ made a strong showing once again, proving that compiled languages for systems programming are still core to the IT operations of many enterprises. As with last year, however, the real story lies in the tremendous popularity of scripting languages across all categories of development. This year, more respondents favor Perl than C, which suggests that the popularity of this utilitarian language continues to grow among
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