Comeback kid Fortran reappears in programming index

Comeback kid Fortran reappears in programming index

The TIOBE Programming Community index for April is out, showing who the latest movers and shakers are in the top 20 list of most popular programming languages.

A surprise new entry at number 20 is Fortran, climbing 14 places from the number 34 spot this time last year. Fortran was the first commercial programming language ever, and according to TIOBE, this golden oldie is gaining popularity once again thanks to the massive need for (scientific) number crunching.

Bowing out of the top 20 after a long innings is Objective-C, once the rising star in the TIOBE index and winner of the language of the year award in 2011 and 2012. The writing was on the wall for the venerable programming language when Apple announced back in 2014 that its new release Swift was intended to replace Objective-C.

Meanwhile, this month’s high-flyer at the top spot is C, which has been leading the pack since last year and has been the number one or two developer language for decades. Down one position at number two is Java, which has also proven one of the most popular languages, sitting at the number one spot for well over a decade.

A non-mover at number three is Python, which was awarded the title of TIOBE Programming Language of the Year for 2020, making it the first language to receive such recognition four times since the award was introduced back in 2003. However, the figures show that Python, a top choice for data science and machine learning projects, is growing in popularity while the numbers for Java and C are declining.

Also a non-mover at number four is C++, followed by C#, Visual Basic and JavaScript, none of which have shifted positions since April 2020.

The TIOBE Programming Community index tracks the popularity of programming languages, not which is considered the best language or the one in which most lines of code have been written.

The index is updated once a month, with ratings based on the level of developer interest in each language, with search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo!, Wikipedia, Amazon, YouTube and Baidu used to calculate the ratings.