In recent years, programming languages have changed enormously due to the needs and requirements of new technologies. The languages that until a few years ago were the most used, today are already in disuse. And not only that, but they are about to be forgotten because the programmers who used them in their day are no longer working.
Less used and not recommended programming languages
One of the most forgotten and least used programming languages today is Pascal. This language appeared in 1970 in order to facilitate the teaching of programming thanks to structured programming. Although it was very important in the 80s and 90s, nowadays it should not occur to anyone to learn this language. It is curious how Pascal’s popularity slump since 2015, when he ranked 16th among the most used programming languages, until today, when he ranks 229th.
COBOL It is another very popular programming language in the 60s. This programming language wanted to be a universal language compatible with all computers of that time. This programming language was oriented towards management computing and, although it is not used today, there are many programs written in this language that require maintenance (and the number of programmers who know it is almost nil).
Another popular programming language around 1960 was Fortran. This programming language was high-level, procedural and imperative, and it was mainly focused on numerical computation and scientific computing. It was created by IBM and, although it is deprecated, it is still in the Top-50 of the most used programming languages. More or less at the height of Kotlin.
Speaking of Kotlin, this programming language appeared in 2016 and a year later Google named it as the official programming language for Android. However, there it has been, in oblivion, with a use of 0.26%. Less even than Cobol.
Ada and Lips They were also quite popular programming languages in their day. And although today they still occupy their place within the Top-50, their market share is practically nil. There are hardly any programs written in these languages left and nobody would think of starting to program them from scratch with the great alternatives we have.
Finally, we do not want to finish the list of less used programming languages without talking about the programming languages in script format. For example, TypeScript, LiveCode, PostScript, and ActionScript. Although these programming languages continue to work today, the truth is that there are much simpler and more powerful alternatives to modern operating systems. And all of them are barely used in one in every 1000 programs. Even Bash, the scripting language of Unix and Linux, has little use. The only programming language you can get rid of is PowerShell, thanks to Windows 10, and even so, it is only misused in 1 in 500 programs.
We can also find many other programming languages with less than 0.1% usage. Languages such as Raku, Red, Ring, S, Smalltalk, SPARK, Stata, Tcl, VBScript, Verilog, VHDL, WebAssembly and many more were born in the rise of computing, and as they appeared, most disappeared. Nobody should ever think of learning any of the above, or similar ones such as Mercury, MQL4, NATURAL, OpenCL, Oz, PL / I, Programming Without Coding Technology, Prolog, Pure Data or Q, among others.
Esolang: curious but useless languages
In addition to the previous programming languages, which in their day had a significant impact on technology, there are also a number of absurd and useless programming languages, created just to see how far the limits of programming can go.
One of the most popular within this category is Brainfuck. This programming language that takes design to extreme minimalism, being able to represent any function using only 8 characters. Befunge, on the other hand, it is a different programming language, commonly used in obfuscation, which allows us to read instructions non-sequentially through instructions. AND Piet is a programming language represented by a complex bitmap.
Chef, for example, it allows us to program as if the programs were cooking recipes. Bit represents each of the machine language instructions (without spaces, of course). Ook! It is similar to Brainfuck, but using only 3 instructions: Ook !, Ook. and Ook ?. And finally, one of the most useless: HQ9 +.
All of these programming languages have been designed as proofs of concept or jokes. And in some cases, even used by hackers to obfuscate code. But they are not, at all, languages that we are going to meet in our day to day.