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Tiobe Programming Language Popularity

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Update January '09 - Back in the top 20, pegged at #19.
Update February '08 - Pegged at #16. Upward Movement since Jan '08.
Update January '08 - Back in the top 20, pegged at #18.
Update May '07 - After months of falling out of the top 20, VFP is back again at postition #18.
See for a nice chart!
[Update August '06]: VFP Holding at #14 above VB.something, considered an 'A' language.
[Update July '06]: VFP holding at #13 and considered an "A" language!
[Update JUNE '06]: VFP is #13 and considered an "A" language!
Part of June NewsFlash: "Visual FoxPro fans published a site called "Getting Googled For The Tiobe Metrics Count", explaining how to push Visual FoxPro in the TPC rankings."

[Update Feb '06]: VFP is actually above VB.NET and Cold Fusion now! Looks like the older languages have some sort of advantage there since Cobol is above vfp...

and have simultaneously proved how irrelevant the site is. Still, it may get more people interested in using it.
[Dec 2005] - Visual Foxpro is hot! It's the biggest mover, only 5 spots below, and 1 spot above Cold Fusion.

"Rising star this month is Visual FoxPro. It jumped in one year time from position 51 to 20! It is interesting to see that there is a whole bunch of "new" programming languages (such as Visual FoxPro, Cold Fusion, Ruby, D, and ActionScript) trying to get in the major league, but none of them is capable of holding a top 20 position for more than a couple of months."

Well, I wouldn't read too much into this since it's all about measurement methodology, and subject to all sorts of statistical variations. -- Steven Black
from 12/2004, elsewhere William Sanders
The ratings are based on the world-wide availability of skilled engineers, courses and third party vendors. The popular search engine Google is used to calculate the ratings.

so lets see - wading through the obvious :
1. availability of skilled engineers - gleaned from Google - that would mean vfp developers put their resumes on line and the googlebot found them, identified them as VFP 'skilled engineers'
2. availability of courses - gleaned from google - that would mean there are loads of vfp courses out there to be found on training company websites, and the googlebot found them, and correctly identified them as 'VFP training entities'
3. availability of third party vendors - gleaned from google - that would mean there is an abundance of 3rd party tool vendors with web sites that the google bot had trolled through, then Tiobe had been able to find via Google.

I like metrics, but I think the 'tpc' rating is skewed to only show 'things' that 1) got posted and 2) got scanned by the googlebot.

So to have that metric in the first place, there has to be a lot of 'posted online' things to read, weigh, and measure then slam into a database for statistical analysis. Of course that hasn't happened for VFP - in my small brain? I see this as a function of marketing - and this abysmally small 'TPC' rating for VFP absolutely can reflect, at least IMO, that lack of marketing dollars spent and realized market penetration.

Way back when - I was asked by the head of DP for a mondo huge media conglomerate to give him the function point for FP. That metric, in my mind, has to be a better metric for 'getting things done on time and on budget' than the ratings 'calculated' by Tiobe.

It was an interesting thing - FP actually had a function point metric assigned to it, and I didn't know anything about it then [yak - 92?] but I
was able to find it, show the metric, and got the one week consulting gig, which turned into a 15 month contract with another 15 month employee 'job' status thing.

I went on with some more research and did more metrics, and was able to extrapolate function points for Visual FoxPro (not an easy thing). Function Point Computational Analysis is 'fun', and has always been my stomping device to use when a potential client asks me to write it in VB to access data. I can show him the codeblocks, show him the FP's, and show how it will take more time, and thence more money, to 'do it' in VB.

Going forward ? You wanna skew the Tiobe 'metrics' to at least get VFP out of the cellar ? Persuade your buddies to get 'google-ized' ... I don't think 'we' can skew the metrics in any reasonable fashion, however - the marketing arm of Microsoft absolutely created the market share and demand for VB (11.75) developers - and without the same concentrated effort on the part of the VFP (0.065) marketing group [an oxymoron? not sure (vbg)] the Tiobe metrics won't change much, at least not for VFP.

I still get work into my shop cause I have a marketing arm that brings it in, regardless of what Microsoft is 'doing' for 'marketing leads passthru'. MS and I don't agree on what the 'targeted demographic' is for client base, so it's a nice ocean to swim in.
Moving forward - wow - from the cellar to 20th place in only a year! Thats a great Thing!
Now to move it up some more? get yer stuff googlized as much as possible! hint hint nudge nudge ... -- William Sanders
[02/08/2006] -> Another Jump! up to 16 for end of January stats! -- William Sanders
Up to position 13 for First of April 2006 stats. -- William Sanders
[May 2006] Still At Position 13 and getting into Tiobe's HeadLines!
May Headline: Eventual recognition for Visual FoxPro and Lisp (approaching A status)
see for the current scoop -- William Sanders
Category VFP Tiobe See Getting Googled For The Tiobe Metrics Count
( Topic last updated: 2009.01.05 09:23:12 AM )