I guess most have heard about the recent 3b1b MIT course video and how it’s the most viewed julialang video already. Hopefully, many will be introduced to Julia through it so the community grows further. Many are excited by the thought of this growth, it seems to me.
That has made me wonder what we as the current community wish the future of the language to be like. I ask this because it sometimes seems like overtaking Python or Matlab or R as the language of choice is some kind of endgame for some people, so that Julia may “win” (and we as the current users would be on the “winning” side). Sometimes this feels a bit like fanboyish behavior, where new users come in saying “I heard this was the best language ever”. This attitude is of course not great, as we don’t gain anything by people not using or bashing Python or Matlab or R per se. But users bring in funding, so the goal could be “get a lot of funding via lots of users”, but then the question would be, what would you want to be done with that funding.
Is it just faster and faster numerical code? Is it specific software packages that are currently not feasible? Julia already basically can do all the things it was supposed to do when it was built, so is it more of a question of dominating the scene now?
I can say what my own wish is, and it’s rather modest. I want Julia to become so established that I can use it as a tool for scientific collaboration without people asking me “why not python / R / matlab”. I would like people I work with to recognize how much more approachable and maintainable their research code could be with multiple dispatch and custom types. So that I can convince them to try it, I want the friction in working with the language to reduce as much as possible, that’s mostly IDE and data handling tooling, as well as compilation issues now. Basically, I want to be able to actually harness the strengths of the language, which really agrees with the way I think and empowers me to be more than an end user, even though there are no purely technical reasons why I have to use it. In that way, people like 3b1b giving a recognition boost to Julia helps me without a single thing about the language changing.
I would be interested what others think where they want to go with Julia.