Monday, June 7, 2010

Eclipse Community Survey 2010 Published; Interesting OS, app server, and open-source results

The Eclipse Community Survey 2010 is now available, and as a big fan of surveys and data, I couldn't help but dive in to take a look at what the community had to say.

First, as is the case with all surveys and data, one has to consider the audience when looking at the results to understand the context, and in this case, the survey was promoted on the eclipse.org web-site and related blogs/tweets.  It was also only available in English and 1,696 respondents completed it.  And over 50% of the respondents listed themselves as programmers.

Ok, with that out of the way, what are some of the interesting results or observations?
  • Nearly 40% of developers now use Linux (32.7%) or OS X (7.9%) for their primary development OS.  The audience is clearly the reason this is much higher than you'd expect for the general desktop population, but both the Linux and OS X numbers are growing at the expense of Windows which is down 6% to 58.3% from last year.
  • Linux (46%) is ahead of Windows (41%) for deployment OS.
  • Sun Hotspot (69.8%) and Open JDK (21.7%) still dominate the JVM used for deployed applications.
  • Scrum (15.4%) and iterative (10.9%) are the leading development methodologies.
  • Hudson (21.8%) is the 3rd most used release management tool behind Ant (50.4%) and Maven (28.3%).
  • There is a nearly even split among the primary types of apps being developed between RIAs (26.9%), Server-centric apps (26.9%), and desktop client apps (21.0%).
  • For server frameworks, in something of a surprise given all the bashing EJBs have taken over the years, EJB (18.6%) and Spring (19.7%) use is nearly on par and ahead of Servlets (10.1%).
  • It is no surprise that MySQL (31.8%) is the leading database used, but Oracle (21.6%) is not far behind and well ahead of the others.
  • Tomcat (33.8%) far and away the most used app-server and disappointingly, GlassFish (2.9%) is last listed behind WebSphere, Jetty, and WebLogic.
  • Nearly 60% have no plans to use the Cloud!  This is somewhat surprising given all the hubbub we are hearing about the Cloud.
What is perhaps most interesting (and gets its own paragraph, not just a bullet :)) is the section on open-source maturity.  There has been a gradual shrinking of companies that have a business model that relies on open-source and a pretty big decline in companies that use open-source and contribute back.  There is a pretty big increase in those that use open-source but don't contribute back, so it would seem that use has not declined, but engagement and collaboration with the communities has certainly suffered.  And somewhat alarming is that, while still a very small percentage, the number of companies not allowing the use of any open-source software is growing.

What does this all mean?
  • I believe that the growth of non-Windows platforms for development and deployment continues although it is probably getting closer to the ultimate balance point.
  • Developers continue to use and adopt new tools and technologies that enhance their productivity but are not abandoning prior technologies that have had significant improvements (EJB with Java EE 6).
  • Developers are taking a pragmatic or perhaps more pessimistic approach to the Cloud and open-source.  Perhaps due to the economy and companies having to tighten their belts, use of open-source continues but there is no longer the resources to fully buy into the model and contribute back.
What do you think?

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