The GitHub Developer Survey Is In: Here’s What We Learned

The GitHub Developer Survey Is In: Here’s What We Learned

Software developers are very busy people. According to the latest GitHub Developer Survey, they spend the majority of their time maintaining and tweaking existing code rather than starting new projects or having to deal with customer requests and bug reports. Still, they’re constantly striving to improve their productivity through automation and using reusable code whenever possible, which helps them get more done in less time. The survey also found that developers value job security over high pay, and are increasingly accepting remote work as the norm. Let’s take a closer look at the results from GitHub’s 2018 survey and see what we can learn about software development today.

The State of Diversity in Open Source

When it comes to diversity in open source, there’s still a lot of work to be done. But according to the latest GitHub Developer Survey, things are slowly getting better. The survey found that more than 30% of respondents identify as female and almost 20% identify as transgender or non-binary, up from 25% last year. Among senior roles at major tech companies like Facebook and Google, though, those numbers drop significantly with less than 10% identifying as female and less than 5% identifying as transgender or non-binary.

Developers Love Collaboration Tools

Developers love working with tools that make their life easier and help them get their work done faster. That’s why it’s no surprise that the latest GitHub developer survey found that developers love automation, reusing code and remote work. The study was conducted by YouGov on 3,000 software developers from across the US. Some of the findings include: 90% of respondents said they spend a lot or all of their time developing new features for an application.

Virtual Reality Had a Breakout Year

It’s no secret that virtual reality had a big year in 2016. Between the release of the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR, there was no shortage of high-profile VR headsets to choose from. But 2016 was also a big year for VR software, with plenty of great games and experiences to check out. Here are just a few of the highlights from the past year.

Lucid Trips is an iOS app that offers guided meditations and full 360° videos. Rec Room is a free social VR game that offers both competitive or cooperative gameplay (e.g., dodgeball, charades). Worlds Adrift is an MMO created by Bossa Studios where players explore floating islands using airships as their main form of transportation. And finally, Fantastic Contraption is a puzzle game about building machines, published by Northway Games on Steam Early Access.

Developers Are Still Learning About Machine Learning

According to the latest GitHub Developer Survey, machine learning is still a relatively new concept for many developers. While nearly half of the respondents said they were interested in learning more about machine learning, only 19 percent said they were already using it in their work. That may be because it’s a difficult subject to teach. It’s hard to get your head around how these systems actually work and how you can build them yourself, Natalia Karasik, research scientist at Google Brain, told MIT Technology Review.

Developers Prefer PostgreSQL

GitHub’s latest developer survey finds that developers prefer PostgreSQL over other relational database management systems. PostgreSQL is preferred for its ability to handle more complex queries, its robust set of features, and its community support. MySQL was a close second with nearly 30% of respondents favoring it as their favorite. SQLite, which was often chosen by those who chose other in the first question, came in third place with 8%.

Most Developers Don’t Use Microservices

Despite the rise of microservices in recent years, most developers still don’t use them, according to the latest GitHub Developer Survey. Just 22 percent of respondents said they use microservices, while 78 percent said they don’t. Many respondents cited that they’re unfamiliar with how to use microservices, or that they’re not sure how to do so. Microservices are a pattern rather than a technology and there is no consensus on what tooling you need for it, one respondent wrote.

This Is How Much Money Developers Make Around the World

In the United States, the average developer makes $107,000 per year. In Europe, that number is €56,000 (about $62,000). And in Asia, the average developer earns $28,000 annually. The lowest-paid developers are in Africa, where the average salary is just $5,000 per year. That’s still twice as much as it was a decade ago, when developers there made an average of $2,000 a year.

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