Saturday, 8 November 2008

Sales of F# books

The book publisher O'Reilly wrote an interesting blog post entitled "State of the computer book market" which included a breakdown of programming books by programming language. We criticized their study before because it does not count books like OCaml for Scientists, which has been the world's best-selling book about OCaml since its publication, and also because they consider only units sold and not cost.

Wiley have gathered sales information about our book F# for Scientists and it is interesting to see how well F# is doing compared to the figures for general programming book sales last year that were quoted by O'Reilly.

A direct comparison shows that the 1,225 copies of F# for Scientists sold in Q3 2008 immediately places the F# programming language a long way ahead of all of the conventional functional languages (i.e. excluding C# and Javascript). The best selling conventional functional language in Q1 2007 was Lisp with only 557 books sold. Moreover, the Amazon sales rank of the book Expert F# is consistently slightly higher than F# for Scientists. So the total number of F# books being sold is likely to be at least 2,500 per quarter.

According to these results, the F# programming language is already far more popular than Ada, OCaml, C, Haskell, Scheme, Lisp and Groovy.