Wednesday, May 20, 2009

More people should do things like this.

Following some links provided in a comment in my previous post led me to this study of the happiness of programmers using different languages from Dolores Labs. They surveyed Twitter posts that concerned various languages (e.g. "I sure love Fortran!" or "C is making me ANGRY!") and tallied the results to see what language garnered the most positive responses.

Here are the results:

The winner... PERL! I guess I can't leave my favorite language quite yet, eh?

Clearly, the results should be scrutinized and a formalized study would likely yield different results. Despite these criticisms, simple studies like this are fantastic. The results give clues as to what a broader, more rigorous study would uncover. The methodology provokes thought on ways to improve the study, the implications of the outcome, etc. And more importantly, the results are just neat. I am reminded of Mark Twain's famous quote on science, "One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact."

Please explore the Dolores Labs site so I feel better about hot linking their results.

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