The latest TIOBE index features a number of surges, shakeups and tumbles, as various languages rise in the rankings and others see marked year over year rating gains.
Each month, TIOBE releases an index detailing the top programming languages and these regular updates highlight granular shifts in this ever-evolving landscape. As TechRepublic previously reported, last month's index showcased "booming" AI and data mining programming languages and TIOBE's latest September roundup features a competitive logjam at the top, as a longtime challenger comes for the crown.
Top programming languages: C, Python and Java
The tight three-language horserace between C, Python and Java remains close in TIOBE's September index. Overall, C tops the latest rankings with an 11.83% rating, representing a year-over-year decrease of 4.12%. Despite this marked decline, C was still able to edge out runner-up Python with the No. 2 touting an 11.67% and a year-over-year increase of 1.20%.
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"Python has never been so close to the number 1 position of the TIOBE index. It only needs to bridge 0.16% to surpass C. This might happen any time now," said Paul Jansen, CEO TIOBE Software, in a blog post about the latest index. "If Python becomes number 1, a new milestone has been reached in the TIOBE index. Only 2 other languages have ever been leading the pack so far, i.e. C and Java. Let's see what happens next month."
Over the last year, Classic Visual Basic has surged 0.77% (11 spots) and now holds the No. 11 position with a 1.52% rating just ahead of No. 12 Groovy (1.46%). It's important to note that Groovy's rating has increased 0.48% over the last year; one of the largest year-over-year surges in the top 20 after Python, C#, Visual Basic, Classic Visual Basic and Fortran. (More on Fortran's ascent in a bit.)
In order, Ruby, Go and Swift hold positions 13 through 15, similar to the same positions these languages held in September 2020. In the latest index, No. 16 MATLAB carries a 1.02% rating, just enough to outlast surging Fortran in the 17th position; year-over-year Fortran has leap-frogged 20 spots with a 0.65% rating increase over this time period. No. 18 R and No. 19 Perl have both recorded marked year-over-year declines, dropping 9 and 6 positions, respectively. Delphi/Object Pascal rounds out the top 20 with a 0.77% rating, up 9 positions and 0.24% since last September.
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