Which programming field has better income?

Which programming field has better income?

Today? Tomorrow? This year? In 10 years? For how long?

If you want a long lucrative career, do your research and narrow down the fields that are likely to have some longevity. Pick out programming technologies with growth potential, and always, always be prepared (and excited) for change, because it will come!

I started my programming career in 1970, with COBOL, BASIC and RPG. Most of the technologies mentioned in this post weren’t even invented then. No web, no internet, no interactive terminals. In the past 50+ years I’ve learned multiple programming languages, have worn many hats. Always, I thrived in areas where change was “in the air”, and moved on when I could detect the smell of stagnation. Do the same, and you’ll be rewarded in many ways, not just financially.

If you want specific recommendations from an old timer (still coding BTW), learn Rust, Javascript, Typescript, HTML and CSS, and keep up to date.

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Looks like everyone already weighed in on this, but I’ll give you my 2 cents as well.

So if you’re going to just go into the software development field just to make money and that’s the only thing on your mind, I think you’re going into the wrong field. Money shouldn’t be a part of your issue. Yes, we all want to make more money to pay off our expenses, but that should come after.

An employer will hire you based on your technical, professional, and communication skills. Just because C# jobs offer you this amount while PHP offers you that amount doesn’t really mean a thing. Majority of jobs will pay you based on your technical knowledge and communication skills.

You could compare 2 different job listings from the same company and each listing would give you different salary options. That doesn’t mean the language they list in the offers will pay more or less. It’s the other duties in that listing as well as your technical background that will impact your salary.

So what I’m saying is that no language has a better “outcome” over one another if you’re in it for the money. Some PHP jobs “could” pay you more than jobs requiring say C# or C++ or any other language while some PHP jobs “could” pay you less than said languages.

When I was applying for local jobs, they were offering me $60 - $70 K for PHP jobs. When applying for other jobs, they were offering me $80 - $100K. Looking at Facebook jobs just for PHP, they’re offering $80 - $120K. So this whole “choose this language because you’ll get paid more” doesn’t mean a thing when you’re really trying to apply for a specific job that only offers a specific language.

Thats just my 2 cents.


When you choose your profession depending on the money you can earn you will never earn much money…


As said by several posters you don’t choose a programming language based on current trends.

Anyway, if it’s money you’re looking for you might consider Cobol. No joking. Most of the companies still running software written in that language are companies in the finance industry and people with that knowledge are retiring therefore to attract programmer money can be good.


Thank you so much for your reply.
I’m considering learning Rust-Lang, but I find it a bit hard. Do you have experience working with it? How about the Dada-Lang?

Thank you so much for your reply.
I’ve heard this before, but part of my goal in learning to program is to make programs for myself. Today, no one makes new programs with COBOL.

Yes, Rust can be a challenge to learn, but the rewards can be great, if you master it.

Consider that ALL programming/scripting languages respresent abstractions of the code that actually gets executed by a given computer’s CPU, i.e. binary machine code. Generally, the higher the level of abstraction offered by a language, the further away it is from machine code, the more the language constructs “do” for you (as a programmer), and the easier it tends to be to learn and master. Conversely, the lower the level of abstraction, the reverse of each of those points apply.

More abstract languages typically help you write your code more quickly. Less abstract languages typically result in smaller executables and more performant code. With modern techniques such as JIT compilation and profiling/optimizing compilers, these differences are shrinking, but they’re unlikely to be eliminated.

The lowest level of abstraction is Assembler, which typically has a syntax that closely mirrors the machine code instruction set of a given CPU. It’s not for the faint-hearted!

Rust, like C/C++, is the next level of abstraction. Like C/C++, it is used for system programming. Rust is making steady inroads into the space which used to be the exclusive domain of C/C++, largely because it very neatly avoids the memory management challenges posed by those languages.

Rust is also powerful in that in addition to creating native executables, it can also target Web Assembly for compilation, which is now supported by all modern web browsers. So, potentially one highly performant language for multiple problem domains (server, desktop, mobile, embedded, browser).

I had several years of C/C++ experience, so transitioning to Rust was not too difficult.

Dada is new to me. Looking at the website, it appears to be very much a WIP experiment. Interesting and worth following, but no way ready for prime time. Interestingly, if you examine the Dada GitHub repo, you’ll see it’s written in Rust. There’s a reason for that. :grinning:

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Which is a great way to learn. But you’ve somewhat underlined something here, without realizing it.

If you’re just starting to learn, learn how to program. The basics of programming can be applied to every language under the sun. If you learn how to solve a problem programmatically, skinning your solution in a language (or languages) is the last 1%/5% of the doing.

I know when I was in university studying Computer Science, “theory” courses made me roll my eyes. I wanted to code, not learn theory. But they were the most important courses I took, even though i didnt realize it at the time. It makes you flexible, which can be more of an asset for companies than someone who’s an expert at one thing.


About the time I started. I learned COBOL in high school then joined the US Army in 1972, programming COBOL.

My specific recommendations as an old timer (still coding BTW) are C++, Java and C#. I suggest avoiding Rust, JavaScript, PHP and Python unless there is a need for any of them for a career. There are plenty of programmers that favor C++, Java and C# and jobs for them.

We have a serious contradiction here. The subject here is better income and that contradicts for myself.

I once tried to use Pascal for a program and got very frustrated by the documentation. And there are some languages, such as Prolog, that can be far more frustrating. An alternative to what you are saying is that the higher the level of abstraction that a language is, the more difficult it can be to learn when the documentation is unclear. And modern documentation is often very frustrating.

Yes, after they have been learned.

Yes Web Assembly was initially designed for C and C++ and now there are compilers for most languages that are popular.

your income in programming field depend upon the skills you have and experience.

The income in programming fields can differ based on various factors such as location, experience, expertise, and demand for specific skills. However, some programming fields are generally known for offering higher incomes:

  1. Machine Learning and Data Science

  2. Blockchain Development

  3. Cloud Computing

  4. Cybersecurity

  5. Mobile App Development

The Machine learning and artificial intelligence is preferred as better income source with high expertise in these fields.

I’ll just repeat this, given the direction this thread has been taking:

If your doing something only for the money but don’t like doing it you will never get really good at it and you’ll never reach the point where the real money is.

Optimising toward income alone is a recipe for disaster.