Go Continues Its TIOBE Ranking Rocket Ride

The monthly TIOBE rankings of the most popular programming languages usually don’t include too many surprises. Ubiquitous languages such as Java, C, C++, and Python dominate the top spots, while up-and-comers such as Swift and Visual Basic .NET continue their slow crawl toward the pinnacle.

Within that context, the Go language is something of an outlier, having jumped 45 slots in the past year. It now stands in tenth place on TIOBE’s list, just behind Delphi/Object Pascal and ahead of Perl and Swift.

“Is Go really able to join the big stars in the programming language world and leave languages such as JavaScript and Python behind? We will see,” read TIOBE’s note accompanying the new data. “The hipster programming languages Kotlin, Elixir and Hack didn’t progress much this month. Kotlin lost 5 positions, Hack lost 6 positions and Elixir is still not in the top 50 losing also 5 positions.”

Go was already TIOBE’s programming language of 2016, thanks to its steady rise in the rankings. The organization attributes that climb to a variety of factors, including Go’s support for concurrent programming, ease of learning and use, and widespread adoption by commercial and industrial vendors.

Go started out a decade ago as one of Google’s more successful “20 percent” projects, and grew in popularity and effectiveness as more developers contributed to it. By late 2016, Dice’s own data had seen a significant increase in Go-related job postings, a sign of particularly strong demand. Those interested in playing around with the language can visit its dedicated page, which includes documentation, packages, and an official blog.

TIOBE’s popularity ratings are based on data from a variety of aggregators and search engines, including Google, Wikipedia, YouTube, and Amazon. In order for a language to rank, it must be Turning complete, have its own Wikipedia entry, and earn more than 5,000 hits for +”<language> programming” on Google.

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