These are the top 25 people who will have the most influence in tech this year, according to a survey of over 30,000 developers

  • Stack Overflow, a site for developers to ask and answer questions about programming, recently released the results to its annual developer survey.
  • The survey got 30,000 answers to the open-ended question: “What individual person will have the most influence in tech this year?” Of note, 91.7% of the respondents were men, according to Stack Overflow.
  • Over 30% of them wrote in Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla.
  • These are the top 25 people who will have the most influence in tech in 2019, based on the survey.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Stack Overflow, a site where you can get answers to even the trickiest programming questions, recently released its annual developer survey.

This annual survey of nearly 90,000 developers looks at demographics, what types of work programmers are doing, the technology they’re using to do it, and other questions.

This year, Stack Overflow also surveyed developers on who they think will most influence tech in 2019, allowing respondents to write in their answer. It’s important to note that the question was phrased as: “What individual person will have the most influence in tech this year?” That phrasing doesn’t specify whether the impact is good or bad.

These top 25 results are based on 30,398 responses, and include CEOs and co-founders of tech giants, open source developers, and even politicians. The top response by far is Elon Musk, the bombastic CEO of Tesla – 30.2% of respondents wrote him in, followed by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

Only one woman made it on to the list. Also of note, 91.7% of respondents were men, while only 7.9% were women and 1.2% were non-binary, genderqueer, or gender non-conforming.

Below are the top 25 people who will have the most influence in tech in 2019, according to the Stack Overflow survey.

25. Werner Vogels, Amazon CTO

Werner Vogels is the vice president and CTO of Amazon. Before that, he worked at Cornell, where he conducted research on scaling enterprise computing systems.

24. Jack Ma, Alibaba cofounder and chairman

Jack Ma is the cofounder and chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba. When Alibaba went public in 2014, it set the record for the world’s largest public stock offering. Ma plans to step down as chairman this September.

23. Demis Hassabis, Google DeepMind CEO and founder

Google DeepMindGoogle DeepMind CEO and founder Demis Hassabis

Demis Hassabis is the CEO and founder of artificial intelligence research company DeepMind. It was acquired by Google in 2014.

22. Jon Skeet, staff software engineer at Google

GoogleJon Skeet, staff software engineer at Google

Jon Skeet is a software engineer at Google – but what he’s most known for is being the top contributor on Stack Overflow, a website that millions of coders rely on to ask questions about programming.

21. Lisa Su, Advanced Micro Devices CEO

AMDAdvanced Micro Devices CEO Lisa Su

Lisa Su has served as the president and CEO of Advanced Micro Devices since October 2014. She has been at the company since 2012. Before that, she worked at Freescale Semiconductor, IBM, and Texas Instruments.

20. Jeff Dean, Google senior fellow

GoogleGoogle senior fellow Jeff Dean

Jeff Dean joined Google in 1999. Currently, he leads the deep learning artificial intelligence research team at Google. He’s renowned inside and outside of Google for his technical prowess.

19. Ajit Pai, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission

Ajit Pai is the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, and the lead proponent of the repeal of net neutrality. More recently, he has called for more regulations on tech companies.

18. Rich Hickey, Cognitect CTO and creator of Clojure and Datomic

Wikimedia CommonsRich Hickey, Cognitect CTO and creator of Clojure and Datomic

Rich Hickey created the programming language Clojure and the database Datomic. He now serves as CTO of Cognitect, which is the home of both technologies.

17. Larry Page, Alphabet CEO and co-founder of Google

Kimberly White/Getty ImagesLarry Page, Alphabet CEO and co-founder of Google and Alphabet

Larry Page co-founded Google in 1998. He is now the CEO of Alphabet, Google’s holding company.

16. Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum

Getty Images/John PhillipsEthereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin

Vitalik Buterin created the blockchain platform Ethereum and released it at age 21. He is an active member of the cryptocurrency community and also co-founded Bitcoin Magazine.

15. Richard Stallman, president and founder of the Free Software Foundation

Wikimedia CommonsRichard Stallman, president and founder of the Free Software Foundation

Richard Stallman started the Free Software Movement in 1983 and developed a free, open source operating system called GNU. Two years later, he founded the Free Software Foundation to advocate for free and open software.

14. Andrew Ng, founder and CEO of Landing AI and cofounder of Coursera

Steve Jennings/Getty ImagesAndrew Ng, founder and CEO of Landing AI and cofounder of Coursera

Andrew Ng is one of the most famous AI computer scientists in the world. He co-founded online learning platform Coursera and is an adjunct computer science professor at Stanford. In October 2017, he co-founded Landing AI, which helps companies put AI to work.

13. Evan You, creator of Vue.js


Evan You created Vue.js, a popular open source JavaScript framework to build user interfaces.

12. Xi Jinping, president of the People’s Republic of China

Lintao Zhang/Pool/Getty Images

Chinese president Xi Jinping spearheaded Made in China 2025, an initiative to make the country a tech and manufacturing superpower – but top Chinese officials are planning to change course. Meanwhile, the U.S. and China are in the middle of a trade war that is impacting the tech industry.

11. Dan Abramov, software engineer on the React team at Facebook

FacebookDan Abramov, software engineer on the React team at Facebook

Dan Abramov is a software engineer on the React team at Facebook. React is a very popular JavaScript library, created and maintained by Facebook, to create interactive features for applications.

10. Bill Gates, Microsoft co-founder

CBS Photo Archive/Getty ImagesMicrosoft co-founder Bill Gates

Bill Gates is best known as the co-founder of Microsoft. Now, he’s focusing on philanthropy through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

9. Linus Torvalds, creator of Linux


In 1991, Linus Torvalds created Linux, the free and open source operating system, and git, which allows huge teams of programmers all collaborate on the same piece of software. Last September, he announced he was stepping away from the Linux project temporarily. Torvalds scored 1.1% of the vote – making him one of only a few people to score over the 1% mark.

8. Tim Cook, Apple CEO

Tim Cook joined Apple in 1998, and he took the role of CEO in 2011. In August, Apple became the first trillion dollar company. He got 1.3% of the vote.

7. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO and co-founder


Mark Zuckerberg is the CEO and co-founder of Facebook, which now has over 1.5 billion daily active users. Lately, Facebook has been the subject of various controversies around data privacy. Zuckerberg scored 1.7% of the vote.

6. Sundar Pichai, Google CEO


Sundar Pichai joined Google in 2004, and he became CEO in 2015. Previously, Pichai headed Google Chrome and Android. Pichai rocked 1.9% of the vote.

5. Donald Trump, president of the United States of America

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

President Donald Trump had announced an executive order to advance artificial intelligence and has said his administration is looking “very seriously” at whether to launch antitrust investigations into Amazon, Facebook, and Google. He had 2.2% of the vote.

4. Me/myself

2.5% nominated themselves as the person who will have the most influence on tech this year. That accounts for about 760 people out of of the 30,000 or so who responded to the survey.

3. Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO

Satya Nadella has worked at Microsoft since 1992, and he took the reins as CEO in 2014. Since then, Microsoft has gone head-to-head with Apple and Amazon as the world’s most valuable company. 4.4% of respondents picked Nadella.

2. Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO and founder

Jeff Bezos is the founder and CEO of Amazon, which has grown to a $US916 billion e-commerce and cloud company. 7.2% of respondents picked Bezos.

1. Elon Musk, co-founder and CEO of Tesla and SpaceX

Elon Musk is known for many things: Now the CEO of Tesla, he also cofounded SpaceX, the Boring Company, Neuralink, OpenAI, and PayPal. He was by far the top choice, with 30.2% of respondents picking him. He was easily the biggest winner here, with 30.2% of the vote.

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