JavaScript Developer Survey Results

2010-12-13 00:00:00 +0000 by Alex R. Young

The JavaScript Developer Survey results are in! The results are
available here: JavaScript Developer Survey
and the raw data is here: JavaScript Survey Raw

1218 people responded, which is up from 151 last


Note that many of the questions allowed multiple responses, which is why the percentages might not add up to 100%.

Audience Background

98% of respondents say they work with JavaScript in the browser, and 35%
are working on server-side code. 3% said they're working with WebOS,
which may see more interest from our community since WebOS 2.0 has Node
support for services. 11% are working on "other" server-based code,
which might indicate the growing interesting in Node for network

Testing and Debugging

66% of respondents do not test their JavaScript (down from 68% last
year). There were 6 entries for
nodeunit and 10 for Expresso. JsTestDriver got some love with 15 people saying they use it. Two people selected Selenium as well.
There are a lot of other responses in this category, I recommend
scrolling through the raw

if you're interested in testing.

JQUnit/QUnit (I'll change this to QUnit next year) was the most popular test library, with 34%.
Jasmine is also pretty popular, with 18%.

Firebug is the most popular web-oriented debugger, at 78%. Second was
WebKit, with 49%. As I'd expect people are using multiple tools to debug
their browser-based code, but given the popularity of Chrome and Safari
I thought Firebug's lead might have been less far ahead.

Firebug is also the most popular benchmarking tool (71%). 12% benchmark
based on unit tests.

Static Analysis, Packaging

A huge amount of people are using JSLint, with a 95% share of those who
use some form of static analysis.

As for minifying code, 50% of people use YUI Compressor, and 41% use
Closure Compiler. JSMIN seems to be losing popularity, with 25%.

Hosting and Collaboration

75% of respondents use GitHub to find code, which beats search engines
at 68%. 38% use news sites like reddit and Hacker News. GitHub is also
the preferred hosting service, with 86%. Launchpad, Codaset, and
Codebase have a handful of votes each.

Preferred Interpreter

Those of us who work with server-side JavaScript said we prefer Node as
our interpreter, with 78%. Second was Rhino, with 18%.

Other Languages

PHP is the most popular language among our readers, at 46%. Ruby is
second at 33%, and Java is third at 25%. Python is ahead of the C-family
of languages, including Objective-C, at 24%.


Thanks for taking part in the survey, we got a fascinating cross-section
of the JavaScript community.

I don't think it's too surprising that only half of respondents test
their JavaScript, because it does seem like extra hard work for frontend
developers. If you're a frontend developer who's confused about how and
what to test, I could write up more tutorials in that area. Let me know
via the comments.

The popularity of PHP surprised me, but it's possible that this survey
may have been featured on prominent PHP blogs. However, both JavaScript
and PHP are primarily web languages so it does make sense. I recommend
thinking outside of your comfort zone a little bit -- if you're a web
developer there's no reason you can't pick up a bit of Objective-C for
iPhone, Java for Android, or write some TCP/IP daemons in Node.

Opera Dragonfly and Microsoft's JavaScript debugger tools didn't get
much interest. Why not try those out too? You might learn something

The strong interest in Node leads me to believe that we'll see a lot of
startups working with Node or providing services for the Node community
in the near future. If you're working in this area why not meet up with
us for beers to discuss your next project?