JetBrains Sucks at Giving Surveys

JetBrains Sucks at Giving Surveys

Have you ever used JetBrains IntelliJ or WebStorm as your daily IDE?

I really resisted switching IDEs after falling in love with Sublime Text during my days working for McKinsey, and later, Gartner. I lovingly crafted my toolchain and set up a portable version of my IDE on a flash drive, complete with all my code projects, themes, settings and plugins, so that I could sit down at ANY computer and just code.

Then, after a while, I had to start using IntelliJ when I was working at Morgan Stanley. I didn't have any choice; that's what they were using as their daily driver. So, I learned the tool inside and out, and I've never looked back. IntelliJ is THE best IDE for programming JavaScript and related frameworks... I'm convinced. I've used it at every company since then.

(For what it's worth, I've also used HomeSite, DreamWeaver, Notepad++, Atom, Eclipse, Titanium, and a number of other IDEs over the years. I'm also perfectly content to do my coding in Vim. My first IDE was called Hippie 95, and it was literally from 1995... so I've got some tenure on the subject of IDEs.)

Anyways, back to the matter at hand, since this really isn't about how great JetBrains is at building their IDE software. It's about the recent JetBrains coding survey a coworker sent me, where you can win a free MacBook Pro, or $300, or some other crap, if you fill out this survey.

The title card graphic from this post is actually from their survey. After I'd been filling it out for over 30 minutes, it said that I was at 30% and that I'm "Almost done! Keep going!" I nearly quit right then, but the same coworker who referred it to me encouraged me to finish it, as it apparently ends at 39% (with another 2 hours of optional questions for the truly sadistic types).

The questions included are mind-numbingly repetitive, as they figure out ways to ask you the same question over and over again in about a trillion different ways:

What calendar software do you use? How about for managing appointments? What software do you use to remember an important date? What app suite do you use to set up a meeting with someone? How about for booking a conference room? What software do you use to find out what a coworker's schedule looks like? GOOGLE CALENDAR DAMMIT SHUT UP

I finally managed to get through this awful, terrible survey designed by Satan himself, only to find out that the results are at least as bad as the survey:

OK, 69% of people are using JavaScript. That actually makes perfect sense.
Similarly, most people surveyed say they're using JavaScript. I buy that for sure, no problem.

From the two graphics above, you can see that most people are using JavaScript. That's because most people these days are coding in JavaScript.
And they enjoy it.

Fine, that's just the raw data. But let's take a look at what conclusions they've drawn from the data:

LOLWUT?! How much is Microsoft paying you to say that?

I'm not a statistics major, so I'm not entirely certain what "normalized by sample size" means, but I'm pretty sure it's synonymous with either "normalized by how much Microsoft is paying us to tell people that C# isn't the work of the devil as a way for Bill Gates to get revenge on humanity for the suffering he endured in middle school"... or possibly, "normalized by Norman, the ill-tempered SharePoint evangelist we relegated to working in the basement because of his lousy interpersonal skills, who edited the survey analysis before it got sent to the public at large".

Just to do some fact-checking on this, I had to see if anyone really believed that C# was anything other than pure evil, manufactured exclusively for the purpose of bringing dismay and suffering into this world...

Spoiler alert: all 85 of these results are from people who helped make C# a thing, and all of those people are actually demons who work for Satan on evil projects like 9/11, and C# and XCode.

I'm just going to assume that statistically speaking, 85 out of 7 billion people on this planet are mentally ill enough, or enjoy brutalizing themselves enough, to actually love C#. But let's look at the other side of that coin as well:

Hmm... only about 1240% more people hate C# than love it. That's what I thought.

Surely that isn't a full perspective on how awful C# actually is? Let's see...

There would be more people talking about how bad this language sucks, except everyone's avoiding it entirely, and trying never to think about it again for the rest of their lives.

As you can see from the above graphic, roughly the population of a large town or small city is weighing in on how goddamn awful C# is of a programming language, so it's impossible to truly understand why JetBrains thinks anyone likes it.

I could go on and on about how lousy this survey is, or you're welcome to take it yourself if you are looking to ruin your day. Or if you want to jump straight to the punchline, take a look at the results and tell me what you think in the comments below.

So, what gives? I would very much like to know what these guys are smoking.

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