There’s no mystery that programming pays, this has been pretty much general knowledge for years and years now. But even through coding in general and a technical background means big bucks, not all coding is created equally and not all coding is paid equally.
Right now the top income quartile in the United States, defined as those paid more that 57.000 dollars a year are represented by occupations that require computer coding skills. Coding has become a very useful and valuable skill, not just in programming per se. Throughout the working field people use coding in various ways, while working with data, while making designs, or while conducting scientific experiments or research.
As more and more products involve technologies and coding to a certain degree, even if your profession is only adjacent to this, you will benefit greatly from a background in coding. It will help you understand tasks better, have a more clear big picture and help you get things done faster.
Steve Jobs who once said, “Everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer, should learn a computer language, because it teaches you how to think”.
Let’s move on to programming and programming languages. It’s a given that (good) programmers will receive high(er) salaries that other professions, but how much of an impact does the language that they use have?
As a programmer the way you think and how you approach problems and challenges (this is up for debate) is more valuable than the language that you use. Once you know how to code in one language you can easily learn other languages as well. As a developer you are a technological asset. Of course, we can’t have developers learning and switching between languages every few months, experience is a factor needed for a great developer and you can't have that if you aren’t focused.
But, the value of a programmer (for a company) and implicitly his/hers salary, is also dictated by the value of the language that he/she uses. There was an article published recently about the highest paying programming languages in 2016 which gives us a bit of a hint on how valuable certain languages are. Most people confuse popularity with value, but that’s not always true, a niche language can also mean a big payout. This article makes that point exactly. If you have a look you can see that Perl is in really good shape considering.
Perl is on the rise, it’s getting back on track, but it’s far from major competitors like Python ( who is the second highest paid language) and PHP, yet it still commands quite a pretty penny. The value of Perl as a language is not lost, even though some of it’s popularity has faded.Tweet