The C-like Syntax Myth
The growth of the web is not comparable to other programming platforms like .NET, Java or Python. While traditional platform languages show steady and even strong incremental growth you can only examine the growth of the web on a logarithmic scale.
The people with voice in our conversations about programming languages and technology are people who have come up through the industry. They are established programmers and technologists. As humans we look at new trends through the lens of our own past experiences. The experiences of existing programmers was that “dynamic languages” were the new thing and the familiar syntactic elements of languages people like them learned, C and Java, were key to the success of this new platform.
Exponential growth doesn’t come from established programmers, it comes from new programmers who did not, possibly could not, program before. It comes from amatuerizing a set of tasks so that they become accessible to an entirely new class of people than could accomplish them before.
As we watch and support this growth it’s important that we find ways to give voice to the users who are responsible for this growth, often over the louder familiar and established voices.
As a community we also have to get more comfortable building and supporting people from different backgrounds. People from the enterprise, people from different countries who speak different languages. People who may be very different from the hackers and “cyber-hobos” who first built this technology and community.