The writing is on the wall when it comes to emerging technologies, according to a recent State of the Developer Nation survey published by SlashData™; DevOps is now mainstream, and Blockchain applications are not far behind. In this annual survey, the correlation between developer interest and technology is measured by engagement change between survey periods. As interest in a technology increases, more resources are added to commercially develop a technology—including the resources of the developer community.

Emerging Leaders

Table 1 below presents the SlashData™ survey data in an easy-to-understand matrix. In the upper left are technologies which have high interest and low adoption. In the upper right are the technologies which have broad acceptance (high interest and adoption). All of the technologies mentioned in these quadrants are, in the purest sense, commercially viable, and driven by a need in the market. Autonomous cars and drones still have regulatory and technical considerations to contend with before widespread adoption, but they have clear commercial applications which will keep them moving along the development path.

Graphical representation of emerging technologies developer audience care about

In a similar survey of the DeveloperMedia audience conducted by Evans Data Corporation, developers were asked to respond to the emerging technology question. (The rankings  reported are shown in Table 2.) It offers more of a macro view of technology adoption and plans compared to the SlashData survey. Between the two surveys’ results, it’s clear that developers are at the leading edge of technology development — no new technology exists without a software component, and the dependence on coded products is only increasing with each generation of new technology.

Table 2 – Developer Intent (DeveloperMedia Audience data)

What are your plans for working with the following in your development?Currently usingPlan to use within next yearPlan to use after one yearNo Plans
Big Data26.7%16.6%8.8%47.9%
Artificial Intelligence17.9%18.3%15.1%48.6%
Machine Learning15.1%17.0%14.7%53.2%
Virtual Reality4.2%9.3%10.6%75.9%
Augmented Reality3.2%9.6%11.4%75.8%
DeveloperMedia User Survey © 2021 Evans Data Corp

Not Really Laggards

The high-adoption, low interest section and the low-interest, low adoption section contain technologies which have not yet reached a level of maturity or viability that allow them to go beyond interest or education to actual project development. Chances are strong that these technologies will continue to gain traction, however, as interest increases and resources are added for development. The transition point between quadrants for developers is the recognition of practical applications for cutting-edge technology.

What This Means For Advertisers

Data from the survey can help advertisers plan content focused on current and future applications and use cases. Advertisers should employ campaigns that build awareness, educate, and help developers decide on the best tools that incorporate emerging technology. And awareness campaigns should focus on attracting developer interest. As interest grows, developers will seek to gain knowledge about both the technology and the associated means of production. Advertising can play a key role in their education. Eventually, a dialogue will form, and it will inform their decisions.


Developers are naturally inquisitive and technically savvy, so they will seek out tools for efficiency and process improvement. Advertisers who follow surveys to stay abreast of new technology areas of interest are more likely to anticipate and plan for developer needs as they emerge. This will increase the strength of product positioning and create resonant messaging within developer communities. Our D2D Marketing Advertising Guide is an excellent place to begin planning your strategy for addressing developers focused on emerging technologies.


SlashData Developer Economics/State of the Developer Nation



DeveloperMedia User Survey

Evans Data Corporation

DeveloperMedia — D2D Marketing: An Advertising Guide