Popular Programming Languages

For a long time, I was puzzled by how popular Python was for backend development. Of course, it’s very convenient for drafting and prototyping, but the code runs slowly! Who would, in their right mind, write production code that is guaranteed to be slow (and hence to require bigger infrastructure budgets)!? Later I learned that many popular Python libraries (especially the performance-critical ones) are actually C++ and even C “under the hood”. Things started making sense.

Likewise, the popularity of Rust used to be a mystery to me. I do understand how Rust is (much!) better than any other language for solving a particular set of problems, yet it’s being used for problems far beyond that set. In a way, Rust is the opposite of Python: the resulting code is fast but writing it is such a tiresome endeavour that I find it hard to believe it can be worth it.

Today, a link to such a project caught my attention in a chat. “Why do that in Rust? Maniacs!” thought I, and clicked. It turns out, to build and run that code, you need:

  • GCC,
  • Go,
  • Python of version 3.9 or newer,
  • make and cmake,
  • and also some other stuff.

But they are doing it in Rust, of course.

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