20 Programming Languages That Developers Love the Most

Which programming languages do technologists love? And which do they love to hate? The answers to those questions can give you a good idea about which languages to potentially master next—a language that’s hated, for example, might see its adoption and usage drop over the long term, while much-loved ones will likely continue to draw an audience for many years to come.

Stack Overflow recently issued its annual Developer Survey, which queried more than 70,000 developers about their preferences. Here’s how they responded to questions about which programming languages they loved and hated:

We didn’t include the full list, but the most-hated languages included COBOL (hated by 79.96 percent of developers), MATLAB (80.84 percent), and VBA (78.56 percent).

“Rust is on its seventh year as the most loved language with 87 percent of developers saying they want to continue using it,” read Stack Overflow’s note accompanying its data. If that encourages you to learn Rust (and potentially find out for yourself why it topped the “most loved” languages list), rust-lang.org offers lots of handy documentation. There are also some handy (free) tutorials available via Medium

It’s also worth keeping an eye on TypeScript, a superset of the ultra-popular and well-established JavaScript, that’s enjoyed a spike in recognition and adoption over the past few years.

Among the biggest languages, Python is always worth your time, given its user base and rate of adoption. For those beginning a learning journey into the language, start with Python.org, which offers tons of documentation, including a useful beginner’s guide to programming in it. From there, you can jump to tutorials on writing faster code (via Functions, Lists, and more), debugging, and other more advanced skills.

Keep in mind that “love” and “hate” for a particular language is often subjective. Nonetheless, it’s important to know which languages have popular backing, as that translates into widespread adoption—and more work opportunities.