Language Market Survey
Fri, 20 Nov 1998 10:40:25 -0800 (PST)
>At 05:31 PM 11/19/98 , Jim McCoy wrote:
>>>The proportion of books ... good leading indicator of future proportions.
>>An interesting posit, but your data does not fit the query. You are
>>considering shelf space, which is highly dependant on the number of
>>available titles, ...
>Jim's observation suggests splitting my hypothesis in two:
>1) books sold is a good leading indicator of what languages will be big
>2) shelf space is a good indicator of books sold.
>#2 is indeed weak, but #1 remains interesting.
[#] Shelf space indicates vendor expectations
A bunch of titles on a given language is an indicator of expectations by
publishers and book sellers that that language has or will have a lot of
interest to book buyers. Looking at the shelves lets you freeload on their
market research and forecasting efforts a bit.
If Larry Wall's Perl book is selling a ton, then it doesn't matter how
definitive or sufficient it is; competing publishers will rush out a bunch of
new titles on the same subject to try to soak up some of those sales (even if
most of those other books are terrible and end up selling poorly).
>>That there are tons of C++ and Java titles is not surprising given how
>>wacked out the language syntax is and how difficult it is to accomplish
>>anything in the language.
>>For example, there have
>>probably been more copies of Larry Wall's Camel (Perl) book sold than any
>>single C++ book.
>[#] Perl wins my prize for most whacked out syntax since Hypertalk.
>csh's substitution rules come in a close second
[#] One word: INTERCAL