- Stack Overflow, a popular Q&A site for developers, surveyed 65,000 users about what programming languages they use and their salaries.
- Based on those responses, Stack Overflow compiled a list of which programming languages are associated with the highest salaries.
- This survey was conducted in February, before the coronavirus outbreak was declared a pandemic in March.
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If you want to make a lot of money as a programmer, it might be worth brushing up on your skills.
Working as a programmer in the US can land you a six-figure salary, but there are some languages that are in even more demand. Stack Overflow, a Q&A site for developers with 50 million unique monthly visitors, surveyed 65,000 developers to ask about what languages they use, their salaries, and more. From this data, it put together a list of the programming languages associated with the highest salaries.
While some of the top moneymaking programming languages are well loved, a few of them made it onto Stack Overflow’s list of most dreaded languages. Perhaps these high salaries compensate for having to work with languages that most developers don’t want to use.
This survey showed developers’ median salaries worldwide and in the US, and Stack Overflow converted currencies to USD using the exchange rate on February 2, 2020, and assumed 12 working months and 50 working weeks for annual salaries.
Also, the survey was taken in February, before the World Health Organisation declared the coronavirus outbreak as a pandemic in March. Different routines and challenges around remote work may have affected developers’ choices, but we’ll just have to wait until the next survey to see how, if at all.
For now, here are the top programming languages associated with the highest salaries, according to Stack Overflow, in descending order.
Apple launched this programming language in 2014, and it has since become one of the fastest growing programming languages. Swift makes it easier to build iOS apps on mobile and desktop, and it’s becoming more common for AI applications as well. Swift developers make a median salary of $US58,000 globally and $US125,000 in the US.
Uber, Airbnb, Square, the meditation app Calm, and some 500,000 other apps on the App Store are at least partially written in Swift.
C is one of the oldest programming languages and still one of the most popular today, developed by American computer scientist Dennis Ritchie in 1972. C developers make a median salary of $US125,000 in the US and $US50,000 globally.
Mozilla developed Rust as a fast, reliable programming language that’s efficient with its memory and prevents many bugs. Rust developers report a median salary of $US74,000 globally and $US130,00o in the US.
Today, it’s used in web services like Firefox, Dropbox, and Amazon, and it can also run on hardware devices and networking services. It’s also one of the fastest growing programming languages, according to GitHub, growing 235% last year. And developers love it – it topped Stack Overflow’s list of “most loved” programming languages five years in a row.
Ruby developers earn a median salary of $US71,000 globally and $US130,000 in the US. This open source programming language was created by Yukihiro “Matz” Matsumoto, who blended the best parts of his favourite languages to create it.
Ruby was released in 1995, and since then, it’s become one of the most popular programming languages, with several conferences and meetups based on the Ruby language.
Perl is a family of programming languages that’s over 30 years old, built by programmer Larry Wall. Globally, Perl is the top paying programming language, as developers make a median salary of $US76,000. In the US, Perl programmers make a median salary of $US130,000.
Perl is used for prototyping, large scale projects, text manipulation, system administration, web development, network programming, and more.
Kotlin, which was developed by the software tools company JetBrains, helps developers write Android apps faster and in a more productive way. Today, Kotlin developers make a median salary of $US130,000 in the US. Globally, it’s less popular, and Kotlin developers worldwide make a median salary of $US54,000.
It’s similar to the older programming language Java, which is also used for developing Android apps, but it’s more modern and requires writing less code. It also has features that help developers avoid common programming mistakes. It’s now an official language for Android development and one of the fastest growing programming languages, according to GitHub, as it grew by 182% in the past year. Today, it’s used by companies like Google, Square, and Atlassian.
Objective-C is based on the C programming language, and it’s one of the main programming language Apple uses for building its OS X and iOS operating systems. Objective-C developers make a median salary of $US135,000 in the US and $US64,000 globally.
Objective-C is also used for developing iOS apps. It was first developed in the 1980s and used for the NeXTSTEP operating system developed by NeXT before Apple acquired it.
Google engineers developed the programming language Go in 2007 and launched it in 2009. Go developers have a median salary of $US74,000 globally and $US140,000 in the US.
It’s modelled after an older programming language called C and is used to build simple and reliable software. Today, Go is used in many of Google’s production systems and is one of the fastest growing programming languages, according to GitHub.
Scala, which is short for Scalable Language, was first developed by German computer science Martin Odersky. Scala developers have a median salary of $US76,000 globally and $US150,000 in the US.
It’s used by many developers of Java, an older and very popular programming language. Developers use Scala to make their business applications more productive, reliable, and scalable and is designed to avoid common bugs.
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