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Tech Trends Radar

TechRadar

At Build Stuff Lithuania 2018, we asked attendees to assess current trends in software development in the following areas: frameworks and languages, techniques, tools and platforms. This is what we found out.

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Participants of BuildStuff are working in a polyglot environment. Our radar reflected most big languages out there and leaned slightly towards Microsoft .NET technologies.

Frameworks and Languages

Front-end
Although JavaScript frameworks were mentioned, the selection was not so versatile as we saw at GeekOut. For example, there was no mention of Aurelia, Meteor or Polymer on the radar. React and Angular, on the other hand, are both well-known but surprisingly there were far more controversial opinions about React than we saw for Angular. React was represented in all four rings from Avoid to Adopt but Angular appeared only in Adopt and Trial rings. The reason might actually be the decision to have a clear separation of Angular 1 and consecutive versions since the first version of Angular appeared dominantly in Avoid ring.

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Back-end
.NET, PHP and Java were all in multiple rings. Probably the reason is a natural tendency to recommend the language that you work most with and steer away from everything else. Out of those there, I find the appearance of Kotlin in Adopt and Trial more interesting since this implies that Kotlin has managed to keep its positive reputation and developers, who know little of it, don’t have a bad impression either. The only new and noteworthy finding in this quadrant for me was Nuxt that just like many other frameworks tries to lower the learning curve for getting started by hiding low-level complexities behind additional abstraction. Over the years I’ve seen many generators and most of them die out eventually but in a small scale project, I’m still willing to experiment.

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Techniques

Build Stuff participants recognize the importance of Test/Behavior/etc driven development in today’s agile teams with constantly changing requirements.

Do you use TDD / BDD / [other]DD in your daily life?

The most opposing opinions in this quadrant were posted around Microservices and Agile. Surprisingly nobody added DevOps to this list that would have probably received similar spread across the rings as well. I often feel that as developers we are too much concentrating on the tools, language and platforms we work with and don’t have enough techniques in our toolkit.

There were a fair amount of developers, who believed 6h workdays should be something to pursue.

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Tools

This quadrant contained a lot of obvious items that we hope to avoid for future radar iterations such as IntelliJ and Visual Studio Code. It is not easy to find someone who does not believe these are great tools – with TechRadar we try to highlight the not so obvious. On the other hand, this quadrant also had a lot to investigate. I really liked that Ansible was rather strong in Adopt ring and looking forward to a project where I can start using Sentry. Error collection SaaS is nothing new, but I feel that Sentry has a good value for money in this area.

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Platforms

Amongst the usual suspects, AWS seems to be the most popular among Build Stuff Tech Radar voters whereas Azure DevOps and Google Cloud Platform fall behind. On the other hand, GCP received votes only in Adopt and Trial rings unlike AWS and Azure that had very mixed placements. It is not surprising to see serverless platforms here such as AWS Lambda.

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Let's chat about this!

  • Priit Liivak

    Head of Engineering

    Nortal's Head of Engineering, Priit Liivak, is an experienced software developer who is forever on the lookout for new ideas and technologies to adopt. A member of the Nortal team since 2006, he coordinates activities between the company and academia, frequently guest lecturing at the University of Tartu. Send him an email to chat about where the Java world is heading.

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