One of the questions we asked in the recent survey was "How many years have you been developing with Ruby on Rails?". The purpose of this question is to get a very general idea of the shift in experience across the community.
Before we dive into the results, it's worth noting that this is a survey from a relatively small sample set (compared to the community as a whole). We don't know what the margin of error is here. Therefore, I'm not going to present anything as a conclusion.
The results from this question were:
- Less than 1 year - 4%
- 1-3 years - 23%
- 4-6 years - 35%
- 7-9 years - 25%
- 10+ years - 13%
There are two notable points here. Firstly, in the upper range, we can see that people with over 7 years experience account for 38% of the responses. That's a fairly long time for somebody to be working with the framework and this suggests a strong, maturing community. On the opposite side of the spectrum, only 4% of responders have used Rails for less than 1 year. The first thought that comes to mind is whether this confirms the opinions of people that say Rails is no longer relevant. The main counter-arguments to this are that the 1-3 years group is a sizable amount and we may not have reached Rails newcomers with this survey.
If we take a look at the responses in previous years we can compare how the distribution has changed. Here are the results from 2014:
- Less than 1 year - 6.49%
- 1-3 years - 32.47%
- 4-6 years - 44.16%
- 7+ years - 16.88%
- 10+ years - NA
Note that due to the different answers we had in the last survey I have had to combine some answers ranges. Interestingly, the difference in the 'Less than 1-year' group is not what I would consider significant (down 2.49%). The largest change can be seen in the 1-3 years range, where there has been a drop of 9.47%. Again, there could be a variety of reasons for this. Some of these people may have answered '4-6 years' in this year's survey while the number of newcomers decreased (or people stopped using the framework).
As I have already mentioned, this survey has a response rate that is a fraction of the Rails community. There were 1,417 responses at last count. Therefore, I think the data is interesting, but it's not possible to draw solid conclusions from this.