Which Programming Language Should You Learn for the Future?

JavaScript Can Be Used for Everything

Okay, “everything” might be hyperbolic. But it’s true that JavaScript is arguably the most versatile language of all time, able to create all kinds of software and applicable to pretty much every kind of programming.

Some interesting things you can do with JavaScript:

  • Dynamic websites. JavaScript is the only language that can create dynamic web front-ends, so it’s a must-learn if you want to create advanced web tools. But these days, JavaScript can also be used for the back-end server processing, replacing more traditional languages like PHP and ASP. We recommend the React web framework, which handles both front-end and back-end!
  • Mobile apps. That’s right, JavaScript can be used to create both Android and iOS apps! And not just web apps wrapped up in a mobile engine, but truly native apps. See our roundup of JavaScript mobile frameworks to get an idea of what’s out there and what’s possible.
  • Cross-platform desktop apps. You can create full-featured desktop apps using JavaScript and the Electron open framework. In many cases, this allows you to maintain a web app and additionally export to desktop platforms with minimal effort. High-profile example apps include Visual Studio Code, Discord, and Mailspring.
  • Bots and API tools. GitHub is packed with tons of open-source JavaScript bots and codebases that you can use to create interesting tools, especially ones that interact with existing APIs provided by services (e.g. Slack, Discord, PayPal, Spotify, Reddit, etc).
  • Raspberry Pi and Arduino. Of the many different ways to use a Raspberry Pi, one of the more interesting ideas involves automating aspects of your home using a combination of Raspberry Pi, Arduino, and Node.js (a JavaScript environment).
  • Programmable drones. If you’re into drones and quadcopters, then you may be interested in Nodecopter, a Node.js library that lets you program a Parrot AR 2.0 drone to do things like take off, set down, rotate, fly a particular path, and more.

JavaScript Coders Are in High Demand

According to the TIOBE Index, JavaScript is the 6th most popular language worldwide. According to Gooroo Analytics, JavaScript is the second-highest in-demand programming language for professionals in the United States, beaten only by the ubiquitous Java. In December 2017, there were over 7,200 JavaScript job postings per month.

According to PayScale, the average base salary of a JavaScript developer is $72,500. If you niche down, it can get much higher. For example, the Front-End Web Developer position has an average base pay of $88,500 while the Senior Front-End Developer position has an average base salary of $119,500.

Your mileage may vary, of course, but all of this just goes to show that you can make a decent living with JavaScript if you sharpen your skills and put yourself out there. And because JavaScript is so versatile, you can switch industries or career paths without having to learn a new programming language if you don’t want to.

Learn more about the most in-demand computer programming jobs, how to write the perfect programming job resume, and how to prepare for a programming interview.

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