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The 10 Programming Languages Used by Top Companies

Software Development   -  

March 04, 2024

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Picture this: you have a brilliant idea, but it falls flat due to improper execution with the wrong tech stack. That’s a scenario no one wants to face. The team at Designveloper empathizes with this challenge. Hence, this article will present the top 10 programming languages that leading companies around the globe are using.

With the surge in the number of new programming languages entering the tech world, it’s becoming increasingly challenging for developers and web development firms to select the ideal one for their needs.

What Programming Languages Used by Top Companies?

what programming language do big companies use
What programming language do big companies use?

Since the number of new programming languages saying hello to this world is increasing dramatically. It’s getting harder for coders and website development companies to choose the perfect one to adapt. Let’s start with…

1. JavaScript

JavaScript is a programming language released in the late 90s. People and different website development companies use this one to program the behavior of various environments such as web pages, desktop, and server programs. Besides that, some databases (eg. MongoDB, CouchDB) also embrace JS as their programming language.

Website development companies, programming language
FURTHER READING:
1. How to Choose iOS App Development Language for Your Project
2. Top 5 Best Android App Development Languages for 2022
3. The 7 Best Languages for App Development in 2022
4. Top 7 Web Development Languages To Use In 2022

With JS, developers can do everything related to web page manipulation as well as interact with the user and the webserver. 

After more than 20 years of continuous development, JS has become the most popular programming language according to Stackoverflow. That said, this programming language is used and trusted mostly by large companies including Paypal, Netflix, Uber, etc. This happens due to its various benefits when applied to a certain project, especially web app ones. Below are several reasons why we should practice it a lot:

  • Universal support.
  • Imperative and structured.
  • Dynamic.
  • Prototype-based.
  • Functioned.
  • Miscellaneous.
  • Functional.
  • Delegation.
  • Vendor-specific extension.

And you know what, up until now, JS is the only language offering those advantages at the same time.

programming language
Who is using JavaScript right now?

Let’s continue with some trends related to this language in 2019: 

  • Vue.js is getting more popular every day. There are 30,000 questions regarding Vue.js on Stackoverflow. On top of that, 2 of the most well-known companies – Gitlab and Alibaba – are using this one.
  • Angular is one of the most common JavaScript technologies on Stackoverflow.
  • Website development companies are moving away from REST API and start paying more attention to GraphQL since this new query language is able to solve several issues that REST API can’t.

Recommended reading: 17 Computer Programming Languages that You Should Learn

2. Python

Obviously, you don’t even need to be an expert to hear of Python. But let us introduce it anyway. Python is an objective-oriented programming language released in 1991 by Guido van Rossum.

At the moment, Python is mostly used in large projects by many website development companies, some of the most famous companies practicing this language are Google, Wikipedia, Facebook, Amazon, Reddit, etc. Developers also write AI projects in Python alongside libraries like TensorFlow, Keras, etc.

Website development companies - Programming Language

Recommended reading: Python Best Practices: The 7 Steps That Help You Master

So the million-dollar question is “Why are there so many using Python?”.

There are many to list. First off, this programming language becomes a beloved one among others due to its ability to work across various platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, etc.)

Furthermore, many experts suggest newbies use Python since its syntax is similar to the English language. People develop this language to slither readability, you know. 

However, Python is also well-known because it manages to handle big data and perform complex mathematics.

The benefit of Python

We need fewer lines of code to develop a certain project when using Python than in some other languages. The last major advantage of Python is that code edited in Python can run as soon as it is written.

In other words, when coding in Python, developer productivity is increased in comparison with C and Java. Besides, Python enables us to write clear and logical code more easily. Nevertheless, since there is no compilation step, the development cycle including editing, testing, and debugging runs faster. This helps web development companies deploy code constantly. 

Regarding Python development’s trends in 2019, we have these pieces of news for you:

  • Developers around the world are embracing Python for data analysis, web development, DevOps, and machine learning.
  • The three most common Python frameworks for web development are Django, CherryPy, and Pyramid
FURTHER READING:
1. What is ASP.NET?
3. Everything About the Dark Programming Language
4. What is Kotlin: Definitions, Strengths & Usages

3. C++

In 1979, Bjarne Stroustrup developed a general-purpose programming language dubbed “C with Classes”. Then later, people call its name C++.

At first, people developed to solve various concerns of large-scale projects. In short, C++ is an object-oriented language and it’s also an extension of C. We as developers can use this language for system/application software, client-server application, drivers, and especially embedded firmware. That’s why C++ is also called the “Swiss pocket knife of languages”.

Due to the fact that this language embraces the ability to adapt to this everchanging industry, C++ continues to be one of the most popular programming languages with a lot of website development companies. 

The main reason why developers don’t give up this 40-year-old programming language is that once written correctly. It always maintains a high performance. Besides, C++ can interface well with other languages. The ability to easily put data into a database or pull it out is another benefit when using this language to develop many types of projects. And maybe you have already known, that a lot of game developers keep on adopting C++ because it can display high-speed graphics in games and videos.

According to Paul Richard on Tutorials Point, C++ is a language that is statically typed, compiled, general-purpose, case-sensitive, free-form, procedural programming, etc. Furthermore, compared to some other languages, C++ is fast and good for memory.

On the one hand, C++ generates effective and quality code. In other words, it runs very quickly. And you know what? Many programmers from different website development companies believe this is one of the fastest languages to use. On the other hand, C++ owns a huge ecosystem of frameworks, libraries, and tools.

4. Java

Java is another object-oriented programming language in 2019. It became the most popular programming language with a community of 10 million developers according to Github. 

Steve Zara, a 40-year experienced Java engineer put it, after more than 20 years since the day it was released. Java is still continuously evolving thanks to the combination of stability and innovation.

Website development companies, programming language

To some extent, website development companies pick up Java since they can write and edit code in this language effortlessly. Furthermore, Java is powerful across platforms that can be used for:

  • Mobile applications.
  • Desktop applications.
  • Web applications.
  • Web servers and application servers.
  • Games, etc.

In addition, Java was built to execute a high level of security. That said, this language is one of the most secure ones to use by many website development companies up until now. However, the main reason why this programming language is popular is platform independence.

FURTHER READING:
1. Top 5 Javascript Frameworks That You Should Master
2. 5 Best Javascript Books That You Can’t Avoid From Beginning
3. 10 Best Resources to Learn Javascript for Beginners
4. Why Learning Javascript Helps You Make a Lot of Money
5. What Is ECMAScript and the 5 Latest ECMAScript Features

Some outstanding features of Java are 

  • Simple: it’s easier to use Java since this language has removed all the complexities such as pointers, and operator overloading.
  • Portable: we can write any applications on one platform but it still exports to another platform.
  • Object-oriented: with this language, anything could be considered an “object”.
  • Secured: we can convert every line of code into bytecode after compilation. Obviously, a human cannot read these kinds of things.
  • Dynamic: Code written in Java can adapt to an evolving environment that supports dynamic memory allocation.
  • Distributed: This language includes a feature that can create distributed applications.
  • Robust:   Java owns a strong memory management system, it can eliminate a lot of errors.

In addition, coders can build applications that run offline or can be distributed across servers and clients in a network.

5. Ruby

Conceived in 1993 by Yukihiro Matsumoto, or “Matz,” in Japan, Ruby was born out of a desire to amalgamate simplicity in syntax with the power of true object-oriented programming. Ruby stands out as a high-level, general-purpose programming language that captures the attention of top companies worldwide. It is the backbone behind massive platforms such as Airbnb, GitHub, Twitter, Twitch, Shopify, and Groupon. Matz aimed to create a language that not only facilitated programming but also included features like iterators, closures, exception handling, garbage collection, and portability. Whether it’s building web applications, automating tasks, or developing server-side software, Ruby offers a versatile toolkit that empowers companies to achieve their technological objectives with ease and efficiency. Since its public release in 1995, Ruby has undergone significant evolution, propelled by a dedicated community that has contributed to its continuous enhancement.

Ruby

One of Ruby’s hallmark features is its dynamic typing and support for duck typing. Unlike languages that require explicit type definitions, Ruby’s dynamic typing allows for more flexibility in code writing and execution. Duck typing further enhances this flexibility, enabling classes to be defined and altered at runtime, fostering a more fluid approach to object-oriented programming.

Ruby, along with its popular framework Ruby on Rails, is widely used in web development. Inheritance in Ruby is uniquely handled through Mixins, allowing developers to bypass the limitations of single inheritance by incorporating modules for multiple inheritance patterns. This feature empowers developers to craft more modular and reusable code, aligning with the principles of efficient software design.

6. Swift

Since its introduction by Apple in 2014, Swift has quickly risen to prominence, offering a modern and efficient alternative to Objective-C for Apple’s ecosystem. Combining power, speed, and safety, it is a key player among the programming languages used by top companies. Its adoption by giants such as LinkedIn, Lyft, Uber, Slack, and Robinhood underscores its significant role in the development of cutting-edge applications for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS.

Swift

One of Swift’s defining features is its performance. Engineered for speed, Swift enables developers to build fast and responsive applications. Swift’s syntax and language features, also reduces the likelihood of errors and increases the reliability of code. Its clean and expressive syntax simplifies the development process, making it easier to read, write, and maintain code.

While Swift’s primary stronghold is within the Apple development sphere, its influence is expanding. It is also making strides in server-side development and cloud services, thanks in part to its adoption by IBM.

There are certain challenges that come with a rapidly evolving language: compatibility issues between versions and a smaller pool of third-party libraries compared to more established languages are unavoidable issues. However, its open-source nature has fostered a robust community and a plethora of third-party tools. The language’s design, focused on performance, safety, and ease of use, positions it as a strategic choice for companies dedicated to delivering high-quality, innovative applications.

7. C#

C#, a cornerstone in the realm of programming languages used by top companies, stands out for its reliability, and versatility. Developed by Microsoft in 2000, C# was a response to the increasing demands for web application development that predecessors like Visual Basic and C++ couldn’t fully address. Its approval as an international standard by Ecma and ISO/IEC further cements its credibility and global acceptance.

C#

At the heart of C#’s appeal is its object-oriented nature, providing a structured approach that enhances code reuse and reduces development costs. Its extensive library further supports a firm development foundation, enabling developers to build a wide array of applications, from sophisticated Windows and web-based services to engaging games and cloud-based solutions.

The adoption of C# by industry giants such as Microsoft, Stack Overflow, Trustpilot, and Service Titan showcases its capability to meet the diverse and challenging demands of top-tier companies. This widespread use across sectors underscores C#’s role in driving innovation and efficiency in the tech industry.

However C# might present a steeper learning curve for newcomers due to its more complex syntax. And while it is perfect for Windows development, C# is not as widely used outside of the Microsoft ecosystem.

8. Typescript

Another product by Microsoft, TypeScript is a powerful superset of JavaScript that incorporates static typing. This means that all valid Javascript code is also valid Typescript code. Since its introduction in 2012 by Anders Hejlsberg, TypeScript has revolutionized web development with its ability to provide type checking at compile time, thus minimizing runtime errors and bolstering application reliability.

Typescript

TypeScript’s architecture enables it to embrace the flexibility of JavaScript while introducing the robustness of static typing. Features such as interfaces, generics, and advanced tooling with IntelliSense not only enhance developer productivity but also ensure a smoother coding experience with fewer errors and more intuitive code completion suggestions.

The language’s compatibility with existing JavaScript libraries and frameworks further extends its utility across web development projects. Given its design to be transpiled to plain JavaScript, TypeScript applications can run seamlessly in any environment that supports JavaScript, from web browsers to Node.js platforms. Prominent companies, including Slack, Tech Stack, and HENNGE K.K., have adopted TypeScript for its superior capabilities in handling large-scale projects.

9. Go

Designed by tech giants at Google, including Robert Griesemer, Rob Pike, and Ken Thompson, Go, also known as Golang, was created with the vision of addressing the challenges posed by multicore, networked systems, and large codebases. Since its public unveiling in 2009 and the release of version 1.0 in 2012, Go has rapidly gained popularity for its efficiency, simplicity, and robust support for concurrent programming.

Go

Go’s philosophy centers on providing a straightforward, efficient language that facilitates the creation of reliable and easy-to-maintain software. It combines the speed of a statically typed, compiled language with the convenience of garbage collection and a rich standard library. This blend of features makes Go an ideal choice for developers working on distributed network services, cloud-native development, and high-performance web servers.

One of the hallmark features of Go is its native support for concurrent programming, embodied in its goroutines and channels. These tools enable developers to write highly scalable and parallel applications with ease. Go’s influence extends across various sectors, with companies like Google, Uber, and Twitch leveraging the language to build fast, scalable solutions. Its simplicity and performance make it an excellent choice for building microservices, while its powerful standard library and tooling support streamline the development process.

However, prospective Go developers should be aware of its limitations, including the lack of generics (although this is being addressed in upcoming versions) and verbose error handling. Despite these, its adoption by industry leaders underscores its effectiveness in building the next generation of cloud-native applications and services.

10. Kotlin

Kotlin is a game-changer programming language employed by top players of the industry. Created at JetBrains in 2010, Kotlin addresses the limitations developers face with Java, offering a more concise, safe, and interoperable programming experience.

Kotlin

This modern, statically-typed language runs on the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). Kotlin’s compatibility with Java allows companies to gradually migrate their existing applications without the need for a complete rewrite.

Kotlin reduces boilerplate, enabling developers to write more readable and maintainable code. This conciseness translates to fewer bugs and a smoother development process. Another highlight is its type system, which is designed to eliminate the dread of null pointer exceptions. Kotlin is supported by powerful development tools, including IntelliJ IDEA and Android Studio, offering developers a top-notch coding experience with advanced code navigation, debugging, and refactoring features.

Despite its relative youth compared to Java, Kotlin’s adoption by top companies highlights its strategic importance in the tech industry. Kotlin’s rise to prominence is backed by its robust features and the strong support from industry giants like Google, Atlassian, Pinterest, and Netflix. By May 2020, Google had announced that approximately 70% of the top 1,000 Android apps on Google Play Store were supported by Kotlin. Its adoption by Google as a preferred language for Android development has propelled Kotlin into the spotlight, making it a must-know language for developers aiming to build cutting-edge applications.

How Many Programming Languages Are There?

The number of programming languages in the world depends on the rules you establish for deciding whether or not a language counts, among other aspects. That being said, there are quite a few sources that provide the estimates.

How Many Programming Languages Are There?

1. Wikipedia – 700

According to Wikipedia’s list, whose goal is to include “all notable programming languages in existence”, there are over 700 programming languages.

However, it’s important to note that Wikipedia’s list focuses on programming languages, which are used to create software applications. This means that certain types of languages are excluded from this list. For instance, markup languages like HTML and XML, which are used to structure and present content on the web, are not included. Similarly, style sheet languages like CSS, which are used to describe the look and formatting of a document written in a markup language, are also not considered programming languages by Wikipedia.

Wikipedia’s list is governed by specific rules and considerations. For a language to be included, it must be notable, which typically means it has a reliable source that verifies its existence and importance. This ensures that the list is accurate and reliable.

Examples of programming languages on Wikipedia’s list range from widely-used languages like Java, Python, and C++, to less common ones like ALGOL, COBOL, and FORTRAN. Each of these languages has made significant contributions to the field of programming and has been used to create a variety of software applications.

2. TIOBE – 250

The TIOBE index is a renowned resource that ranks the popularity of approximately 250 programming languages. It uses a variety of indicators to calculate these rankings, including the number of skilled engineers worldwide, courses offered, and third-party vendors.

To be tracked by TIOBE, a programming language must pass three tests:

  1. Wikipedia Page: The language must have its own Wikipedia page that clearly indicates it is a programming language.
  2. Turing Completeness: The language must be Turing complete, meaning it can simulate a Turing machine – a mathematical model of computation that defines an abstract machine capable of solving any computation problem.
  3. Google Search Results: A Google search for the language must return over 5,000 results.

TIOBE’s list includes a wide range of programming languages, from widely-used languages like Java, C, and Python, to less common ones like Ada, Lua, and D. The list is updated monthly, offering up-to-date insights into language popularity.

However, the TIOBE index is not a definitive guide to the “best” or most “useful” languages, but rather a barometer of the trends in the programming world. The criteria for inclusion might exclude newer, less-known languages that don’t have a Wikipedia page or 5,000 Google search results. The best language for a particular project depends on the specific requirements, team expertise, and other factors.

3. FOLDOC – 1,000

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (FOLDOC), a 90’s era online dictionary of computing, lists over 1,000 programming languages. This extensive list includes not only distinct languages but also aliases, or different names for the same language.

FOLDOC’s list is a testament to the rich history and diversity of programming languages. It includes everything from mainstream languages like Java, Python, and C++, to less common ones that have played significant roles in the history of programming.

However, it’s important to note that FOLDOC’s list includes aliases, which means some languages may be counted more than once under different names. For example, ECMAScript is an alias for JavaScript and would be listed separately.

While FOLDOC provides a broad overview of programming languages, it’s essential to consider the specific needs and context of a project when choosing a language. Factors such as the project’s requirements, the team’s expertise, and the language’s community support and ecosystem should all be considered.

Designveloper’s Recommendation: Companies that Use Python

Python is a great language to learn, that’s why we’re going to talk more about it in detail, especially in regards to the top companies that use Python.

  • Google
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Spotify
  • Quora
  • Netflix
  • Dropbox
  • Reddit
Designveloper's Recommendation: Companies that Use Python

Google

Python was one of the first server-side languages Google used to develop its search engine and continues to be used for many of its services. The tech giant’s philosophy, “Python where we can, C++ where we must,” underscores Python’s critical role in Google’s ecosystem. As one of the major market players and top Python users, Google uses Python primarily for data analysis, AI, and backend services. It was chosen due to its simplicity and the speed at which developers could write code.

  1. Readability and Simplicity: Python’s syntax is clean and easy to understand, which makes code maintenance and debugging easier.
  2. Standard Library: Python’s extensive standard library allows developers to implement a wide range of functionalities without the need for external libraries.
  3. Productivity: Python’s simplicity allows developers to focus more on solving the problem at hand rather than focusing on language complexities.

Google’s search algorithms run on vast amounts of data. To handle this effectively, Google uses Python for its data analysis needs. Python’s extensive libraries for data analysis and its ability to work well with data manipulation make it an excellent choice for this task.

Google also uses Python for its AI and machine learning projects. TensorFlow, Google’s open-source library for high-performance numerical computation, is predominantly written in Python. This allows for rapid prototyping and iteration, which is crucial in the fast-paced field of AI.

For backend services, Google uses Python extensively. Its simplicity and the availability of numerous web frameworks like Django and Flask make Python a preferred choice for developing robust and scalable backend services.

It’s worth noting that Python’s use within Google helped shape the language itself, with several Google-employed Python developers contributing to the language’s development.

Spotify

Python’s role in Spotify’s infrastructure is multifaceted, serving as the backbone for backend communication through ZeroMQ. ZeroMQ, an open-source networking framework, demonstrates Python’s flexibility, bridging components written in both Python and C++.

At the heart of Spotify’s user experience is its sophisticated recommendation engine, which relies heavily on extensive data analytics. To interpret and manage this complex data stream, Spotify employs Luigi, a Python module that seamlessly integrates with Hadoop. This integration is pivotal for powering features like “Radio and Discovery,” enabling Spotify to deliver personalized content to its users based on their listening habits and preferences.

Python’s utility in Spotify’s operations extends beyond data handling. It also ensures that various libraries and processes work in harmony, swiftly identifying and rectifying errors. This capability is crucial for maintaining the reliability of Spotify’s service, allowing for quick troubleshooting and redeployment. With around 6,000 individual processes operating over Hadoop cluster nodes, Python’s scalability and efficiency are on full display, illustrating why it is a top choice among programming languages used by leading companies.

Facebook

Renowned, Facebook is renowned for harnessing Python’s capabilities to drive efficiency and innovation for its expansive social networking platform

Python’s appeal to Facebook’s developers lies in its extensive libraries and frameworks, which significantly reduce the burden of coding. This efficiency allows the team to devote more energy to substantive improvements and feature developments, rather than getting bogged down by the minutiae of code management. The result is a more scale-efficient infrastructure that can better accommodate Facebook’s vast user base and complex data handling needs.

A testament to Python’s integral role at Facebook is the company’s 2016 revelation that Python underpins numerous services within its infrastructure management. This highlights not just Python’s versatility but its reliability in supporting the backbone of Facebook’s operations.

You can see their commitment to Python in their numerous published projects written in Python 3, such as the Facebook Ads API and an asynchronous IRC bot framework. These projects showcase Python’s ability to handle a wide range of tasks, from managing advertising operations to facilitating real-time communication services.

A significant milestone in Facebook’s ongoing relationship with Python was the transition of its infrastructure and handlers from Python 2 to Python 3.4. This upgrade process was notably supported by AsyncIO, a library that offers powerful asynchronous capabilities. AsyncIO has been instrumental in enhancing Facebook’s engineering processes, enabling more efficient handling of I/O-bound and high-level structured network code.

Quora

Quora, a leading question-and-answer social network, had to choose the most suitable programming language for its development needs among C#, Java, and Python. They ended up with Python.

There are certain drawbacks to this decision such as the lack of type checking and its relatively slower performance compared to compiled languages. The platform initially hesitated due to Python’s dynamic typing and performance concerns. But through the implementation of rigorous unit testing, they had effectively addressed the issue of type checking.

Quora’s founders were significantly inspired by Google’s adoption of Python, valuing Python’s ease of writing and superior readability. This inspiration underscored Python’s potential to facilitate rapid development and maintainability. Furthermore, Python’s rich ecosystem, including powerful frameworks like Django and Pylons, played a crucial role in Quora’s choice. These frameworks provided the necessary infrastructure to build and scale Quora’s complex web application efficiently.

The decision to bypass C# stemmed from its proprietary nature as a Microsoft language, along with concerns about the need to continuously adapt to Microsoft’s future updates. Java, despite its robustness and wide adoption, was dismissed due to its strict syntax and the founders’ apprehensions regarding its relative newness at the time and uncertain future growth prospects.

Another pivotal factor in Python’s favor was its compatibility and synergy with JavaScript (JS) for handling user interactions, enabling a seamless user experience on the Quora platform. This combination of Python for backend development and JS for frontend interactions exemplifies a modern web development paradigm, leveraging the strengths of both languages to create a responsive, user-friendly interface.

Recommended reading: Top 7 Web Development Languages To Use In 2022

The Most Secure Programming Languages

Then is there one programming language more secure than the rest? According to a new report from the open-source security company WhiteSource, here’s how the vulnerabilities were distributed across the most prominent programming languages:

  1. C (47%): Despite its long-standing history, C remains susceptible to security flaws. Its low-level nature allows for direct memory manipulation, which can lead to buffer overflows and other vulnerabilities.
  2. PHP (17%): PHP, commonly used for web development, has faced criticism for its security track record. Poorly written PHP code can expose applications to risks such as SQL injection and cross-site scripting (XSS).
  3. Java (11%): Java’s robust security features, including its sandboxing model, contribute to its relatively lower vulnerability rate. However, flaws still exist, especially in third-party libraries.
  4. JavaScript (10%): As the language of the web, JavaScript powers countless websites and applications. Its vulnerabilities often stem from client-side execution, making input validation critical.
  5. Python (5%): Python’s readability and ease of use have made it popular among developers. While it fares well in security, developers must remain vigilant against common pitfalls.

The report’s findings are both reassuring and thought-provoking. While we learn that there is no definitive “most secure” programming language, here are some key takeaways:

  • It’s Not About the Language: Rather than declaring a winner, the focus should shift to secure coding practices. Regardless of the language, diligent vulnerability management throughout the software development lifecycle is crucial.
  • Mitigate, Monitor, and Adapt: Companies must adopt a proactive approach. Regular vulnerability assessments, timely patches, and adherence to best practices ensure a robust defense against threats.

The most secure programming language is not a solitary champion but a collective effort. By prioritizing security awareness, education, and vigilance, organizations can safeguard their codebase and build resilient software systems.

A Conclusion of Programming Language

Every programming language has its own benefits and advantages. As a result, your mission is to seek what is best for your future project. But hey, if you are still in the loop, let Designveloper give you a hand. Tell us your ideas and we will realize them for you!

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