Nov 15, 2019

Are we in a golden age of software development?

GitHub State of the Octoverse

GitHub released its State of the Octoverse report that analyzes code repositories and developer activity across its platform.

Overall, the software development community saw rapid and unprecedented growth over the last year—more developers, more code, and more tools.

GitHub’s report reveals a few key trends that indicate we could be in a golden age of software development.

First, software development is booming.

GitHub welcomed more than 10 million new developers to its community and is now home to over 40 million users.

Coding activity is skyrocketing, too. In the last year, developers created 44 million new repositories and merged more than 87 million pull requests. More developers are writing more code.

Second, software development is powered by an increasingly rich ecosystem of tools.

Despite trade laws, sanctions, regulations, and security concerns, software development is more reliant than ever on third-party packages and libraries.

The average repository contains 203 package dependencies.

To combat growing security issues stemming from dependencies, GitHub is simplifying developer workflows to update code. Since its acquisition in May, Dependabot automated more than 209,000 dependency fixes through pull requests that were later merged into GitHub repositories.

Third, software development is being transformed by an evolving landscape of powerful languages.

For the first time ever, Python outranked Java to become the second most popular language. Driven by a surging interest in data science, Python continues its march toward dominance across the development stack.

A new breed of languages are taking development by storm, too.

Dart, a language built by Google for cross-platform app development, grew 532% over the past year, driven in part by the rising popularity of Flutter, Google’s UI toolkit. Rust, another language that is widely loved by developers, grew 235% and will likely see similarly rapid growth in the future. TypeScript, Microsoft’s superset of JavaScript that helps developers avoid certain bugs, grew 161% over the last year.

Today, software developers work in a dynamic ecosystem of languages.

Overall, GitHub’s State of the Octoverse reveals how rapidly the world of software development is changing each year. The explosive growth of developer communities, open source code, advanced languages, and the GitHub platform points to a bright future for developer-led innovation around the world.

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