Java to lead C++ and VB, analyst says

The hype surrounding the concept of Web services is being lapped up by developers around the globe, according to developer research firm Evans Data.

Janel Garvin, vice president of research for Evans Data, said Web services adoption has been aggressive among developers despite the current lack of an industry standard, let alone a standard definition for Web services.

Speaking at IBM's technical developer conference in San Francisco, Garvin said over half of the developers that Evans Research surveyed indicated they will be writing code for Web services within the next 12 months. Most of this interest has come from developers working within large corporations or writing code for independent software vendors.

Evans Research, which covers a broad range of developer-focused issues, also noted that by next year the Java language will be used by more developers than C++ or Visual Basic. Java has slowly been gaining on the two languages since late 1998, and its popularity is especially strong in international markets.

Similarly, XML was touted as one of the fastest growing languages since the introduction of Java, growing at 135 per cent in international markets. It appears to be a skill which developers want some knowledge of, but have little plans to specialise in.

Developers cited technical advances as the reason why they were rapidly moving onto the Linux platform. However Linux's traditionally low cost and ideological appeal were noted as the most common reasons for adoption. It also appears developers outside of North America are much more likely to adopt Linux for mission critical applications than their American and Canadian counterparts.

In a report the research group will officially release next week, Evans Data also found that the dot-com bust had not dampened the spirits of developers looking to write code for wireless applications. However, simple collaboration tools like e-mail and instant messaging took priority over the development of mobile e-commerce applications.