Onward and Upward

Blog archive

Study: Older Programmers Just as Interested in New Technology as Younger Ones

So, as programmers age, do they get set in their ways? Are they more afraid to learn new things? Are they old dogs that can't learn new tricks?

Nope. In fact, just the opposite, according to some intriguing new research from North Carolina State University. The study examined the profiles of more than 80,000 developers on StackOverflow. Their number-crunching revealed that as coders get older, their interests widen -- in fact, according to the press release, "the researchers found that there is a sharp decline in the number of subjects users weighed in on between the ages of 15 and 30 – but that the range of subjects increased steadily through the programmers' 30s and into their early 50s."

That extends even to the realm of the hottest programming area today -- mobile devices. Again, from the report:

"For two smartphone operating systems, iOS and Windows Phone 7, the veteran programmers had a significant edge in knowledge over their younger counterparts. For every other technology, from Django to Silverlight, there was no statistically significant difference between older and younger programmers."

This is an interesting phenomenon. I'm not sure how much weight I'd give to a one-source (StackOverflow) study, but it might at least help debunk the perception that older programmers are only interested in COBOL and Fortran.

Posted by Keith Ward on 04/30/2013 at 1:15 PM


comments powered by Disqus

Featured

  • Java on Visual Studio Code Going Cloud Native

    Cloud-native development figures prominently in a new roadmap published by Microsoft's Java on Visual Studio Code dev team.

  • Speed Lines Graphic

    Quantum-Inspired Annealing Using C# or Python

    Dr. James McCaffrey of Microsoft Research explains a new idea that slightly modifies standard simulated annealing by borrowing ideas from quantum mechanics.

  • Visual Studio 2022 v17.1 Preview 3 Improves Web Tools

    Microsoft quietly shipped Visual Studio 2022 v17.1 Preview 3 with enhancements to web tools.

  • Progress Telerik Adds 20-Plus Components for Blazor, .NET MAUI and WinUI

    The R1 2022 release of Progress Telerik development tooling adds more than 20 new components to the Blazor, .NET MAUI and WinUI offerings.

Upcoming Events