Predictions

There is a school of thought, that goes like this:

It’s Difficult to Make Predictions, Especially About the Future

You could say I agree with that belief, but really I believe that the difficult thing is actually being correct. Yes, this seems like semantics, but really it is important. There is no shortage of fortune tellers, venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, political pundits, movie studios, hedge funds, intelligence analysts, record labels ad nauseam… The difficult thing is not telling people what will happen, it is being correct! This is why hedge funds charge two percent of invested capital and and twenty percent of profits above the hurdle. Raising capital is often more richly rewarded than deploying it. Now that we know that it seems like a better gig better to make predictions, let’s make a prediction.

In the future every profession will develop their own programming language.

Reinventing the Wheel

This is already happening with Matlab, R, Python, Spark and Javascript. Some people believe that software is eating the world, but it could be that the world is eating software. As every job develops their own programming languages and preferred stack the practitioners who learn that stack will earn the most, be promoted the quickest and have better odds as founders. It is a global tournament of software talent. To learn more about this hypothesis we can track some of the trends in languages over the years.

The languages listed above, except for Spark, are all pretty popular. Matlab and R are towards the bottom, but R just passed PHP, the languages Facebook was written in. Maybe more important is that there are more languages now than ever before. Sure some are declining like PHP, but Cobol, FORTRAN and Lisp are still used and probably will continue at some lower level for a long time. Sometimes, the concepts are embodied in a rewrite of a new language like S -> R. 😉