Python Snakes Up List of Fastest-Growing Skills

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The most recent Dice Report offered a list of the fastest-growing tech skills, including cybersecurity, Puppet (an open-source IT automation tool), Hadoop, and Big Data.

One programming language appeared on that list: Python, which enjoyed 21 percent growth year-over-year (as of Sept. 2), based on mentions in Dice job postings. (Skill requests had to appear in at least 1,000 job postings on a given day to qualify for the analysis.)

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That growth is no surprise. Python, currently in version 3.4.1 (released in May 2014), remains a popular element in college-level introductory courses, according to data released this summer by the Association for Computing Machinery (AMC). It’s also topped the rankings of popular programming languages produced by analyst firm RedMonkTIOBE Software, and other entities.

What underlies Python’s popularity? For starters, it’s a mature and well-established language that can trace its roots back nearly 25 years. Major firms such as Google have embraced it as a key tool for building Web properties. Developers and programmers of all skill levels enjoy its combination of simplicity and power.

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“Python’s syntax is beautiful; the language is concise; and it’s modern,” developer (and editor) Jeff Cogswell wrote for Dice News in August. “I consider it one of the best languages I’ve ever used, and I feel that one of the biggest mistakes made in the world of computer software was when the browsers added JavaScript as their client-side language.” Better client-side software might exist, he added, if Python had become the language of choice instead of JavaScript.

Those interested in building out their programming skills would do well to look at Python, but other languages are also worth examining, including JavaScript, C#, PHP, and Swift.

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