A recent article in Wired with quotes from one of our own. Also, this is a good time to bring up Leo et al. publication draft on Socio-PLT along with their project page and a survey to view and take.
From the article:
But no matter how impressive these new languages are, you have to wonder how long it will take them to really catch on â€” if they do at all. After all, new programming languages arrive all the time. But few ever reach a wide audience.
At Princeton and the University of California at Berkeley, two researchers are trying to shed some light on why some programming languages hit the big time but most others donâ€™t. In what they call a â€œside project,â€ Leo Meyerovich and Ari Rabkin have polled tens of thousands of programmers, and theyâ€™re combing through over 300,000 computing projects at the popular code repository SourceForge â€” all in an effort to determine why old languages still reign supreme.
Edit, abstract from paper:
Why do some programming languages fail and others succeed? What does the answer tell us about programming language design, implementation, and principles? To help answer these and other questions, we argue for a sociologically grounded programming language theory: socio-PLT.
Researchers in the social sciences have studied adoption in many contexts. We show how their ï¬ndings are applicable to programming language design. For example, many programming language features provide beneï¬ts that programmers cannot directly or immediately observe and therefore may not ï¬nd compelling. From clean water to safe sex, the health community has long examined how to surmount similar observability barriers. We use such results from outside
of programming language theory to frame a research agenda that should help us understand the social foundations of languages. Finally, we examine implications of our approach, such as for the design space of language features and the assessment of scientiï¬c research into programming languages