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O’Reilly has published the findings of its annual Technology Trends for 2023 report, which examines the most sought-after technology topics consumed by the 2.8 million users on O’Reilly’s online learning platform. Each year, this usage data reveals which technology tools are growing in popularity—and which are declining—giving business leaders insight into the trends to watch over the coming year.
The 2023 report revealed that developer interest in the key components of generative AI is accelerating: natural language processing (NLP) registered the platform’s highest year-over-year growth among AI topics (42%), followed by deep learning (23%). Developers also increasingly searched for content related to transformers—the AI model that’s led to tremendous progress in natural language processing—reflecting the impact of advancements in Open AI’s GPT-3 and ChatGPT and the anticipation for upcoming offerings from Google, Meta, and others.
While programming languages Python (3.4% growth) and Java (1.7% growth) continue to drive the most usage on the O’Reilly platform, the report found big gains in interest around Go (20% growth) and Rust (22% growth). If that growth continues, these popular infrastructure-related languages could soon directly challenge Java and Python, according to the report.
Also of note, the research found that among data topics, content about Microsoft Power BI was the most heavily used, achieving 31% year-over-year growth. Power BI has clearly established itself as the leading business analytics platform. Apache Spark remains the most widely used data tool, while data platform Hadoop has receded into legacy status.
Additional findings from the report include:
● AWS remains the most popular cloud, followed by Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud. The most popular cloud topics include cloud migration (45% growth), cloud service models (41% growth), and hybrid cloud (28% growth).
● Interest in coding practices experienced 35% growth, the largest jump among software development topics, indicating that developers are highly motivated to improve their programming skills. In the same topic group, quantum computing showed a 24% year-over-year gain.
● The two biggest security topics of the past year include zero trust (146% growth) and secure coding (40% growth), signaling a “shift left” toward bringing security awareness and responsibility into the earliest stages of the development process.
● Developers frequently looked to grow their “soft skills,” accessing topics around project management (47% growth), professional development (37% growth), and communication (26% growth).
● O’Reilly’s sharpest declines in search frequency were for cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Java 11.
“The results of this year’s analysis dispel any notion of an ‘AI winter’ and, in fact, AI has never been hotter. The widespread interest in GPT-3 and its successor ChatGPT has created huge gains in interest around NLP and deep learning, which will only increase as the potential of these offerings grow and new projects appear,” said Mike Loukides, vice president of emerging technology content at O’Reilly. “The other big takeaway is developer interest in improving their soft skills, which speaks to more tech leaders scaling into business leading roles as technology permeates the entire organisation.”