2015 is almost over. It’s time to summarise what was done and what wasn’t during the past year. Furthermore it’s a good time to make predictions for the next 2016 year. As you have already guessed this post is about an ideal java developer in 2016.

I want to surprise you, this time I changed a format of the prediction. In order to make a forecast more impersonal I’ve invited multiple authoritative developers. So as a result you will be able to get more comprehensive opinion in order to determine what java skills would be in demand.


Firstly let’s make a conclusion what has became true from the previous post about an ideal Java developer in 2015. I created a table with 3 columns:

1. The ‘Prediction’ contains my forecasts (2014)
2. The ‘Comments’ contains my remarks (2015)
3. The ‘Result’ contains overall impressions (2015)

Pet projects. A role of pet project can play not only an application, but also a book or e-learning course. Everything you create out of work is a pet project in some sense. And yes, it’s useful to work on such stuff!

Prediction Comments Result
Up-to-date knowledge It’s almost obvious, You need to keep your knowledges always in a ‘fresh’ state true
Not only Java I suggested that java developers should to learn functional programming languages. I think I was wrong, because in 2015 ‘Not only Java’ is rather meant – different architecture approaches, DevOps etc fasle
Community life It’s always useful to communicate with professionals who work in the same area with you. This is one of the most efficient ways to exchange experience. true
Trends, science and education A Big Data wasn’t the single leader. I think that it shares a throne with microservices. But for sure developers need to keep finger on the pulse of trends. true

As you see 4 from out 5 predictions more or less have became true. Unfortunately I in 2015 was pretty far from the portrait of successful Java developer, but I tried to did my best. And what about you? Do you match to the portrait?


What’s new is waiting for Java developers in 2016 and what skills will be on demand? We can make some predictions based on information and facts which we already have. The infographics below demonstrates which java web developer skills are needed in 2016.

java developer skills

Of course I need to explain in details what means each of topics. But if you totally are agreed with the infographics above, you can simply skip the rest of article and share it with your friends. Just kidding!

Regarding the infrastructure, web-frameworks and tools:

No doubt, a back-end architecture has an influence at an infrastructure design where it should work. Microservices, microservices, microservices… A total migration from a monolithic architecture to microservices brought to us exciting news – we should know how to work with containerisation, clustering and new way of deployments. Everything is moving in clouds and become smaller and well grained. And this is a trend.

All these circumstances dictate new requirements to web-frameworks, tools and deployment process. This is extremely valuable to learn Docker, AWS, Mesos, Spring Boot, Play and AKKA in 2016. I’ll be really glad to see analogs of these technologies in comments.

Business Intelligence, Internet of Things. Have you ever heard these words before? This is pretty new direction of technology development. Both of them require usage of Big Data. Hence 2016 is a good time for jumping into the “Big Data Train”, because it starts a trip to high demand exactly 1 second ago. Hurry up! Spark, Flink and Storm are waiting for you.

And finally there are several not so optimistic thoughts. Regardless of technical progress and pressure of new trends, a developer has to do his job well. This is all about routine – a code development, refactoring and a review…

In order to stay in good form and be productive, you need to use a convenient IDE, efficient engineering practices and improve a programming skill. A routine… Nothing to say.

I wish you, to become socially active developer in 2016. Because it’s a good way to learn something new and to share your experience with others. GitHub, StackOverflow and Quora will help you with this.

An expert’s opinion

Geoffroy Warin gives to us his opinion about a modern Java developer.

“This is a mix of techniques and tools I’ve learned and found useful the past year and the one that I wish to learn in the coming year” — Geoffroy Warin


Nobody knows what will happen in 2016, but it’s a nice idea to plan a personal activity based on facts and observations. So let’s 2016 begins and in the end of it we will make a conclusion what was true and what was false!

About The Author

Mathematician, programmer, wrestler, last action hero... Java / Scala architect, trainer, entrepreneur, author of this blog

  • Nice summary. I expect value of full stack developer will rise more and programmers having strong domain knowledge and vast technical sill will be sought after e.g. java developer with Python or Groovy knowledge. Java interviews will also going to change with more focus on JVM internals, GC tuning and Java 8 features as I also shared in my list of 140 Java interview questions from last 5 years. In short, learning Java 8 should be the prime goal if its not in the list already.

  • No SQL knowledge required? Meh…
    You won’t hear about Spark 5 years down the line.

    • Explain please

      • The article seems to suggest only hype tech. It’s extremely shortsighted to focus on these tech only, while not even a single RDBMS is recommended.

        If you go back 5 years in time and dig out the hype tech from 2010, how many of them will you still see today? Exactly.

        • Lukas, the main message of the post is to make a guess which technologies should be in a high demand. So it’s a hypothesis. As for me, a knowledge of any SQL or RDBMS is a well known standard requirement for a java developer. In nowadays in a position description you would likely see microservices, big data or distributed systems, but not SQL and RDBMS.

          I see, you are very proud and passionate about JOOQ, that’s why I want to suggest to you to participate in my article, and write a personal forecast about successful java developer in 2016.
          I would add a link to your article to the “expert’s opinion” section.

          Are you agree?

          • As for me, a knowledge of any SQL or RDBMS is a well known standard requirement for a java developer

            Is it really? I personally find the lack of knowledge and experience with proven tech like SQL (and others) alarming, quite often.

            In nowadays in a position description you would likely see microservices, big data or distributed systems, but not SQL and RDBMS.

            You are aware of RedShift, Vertica, HANA, VoltDB, or SQL-on-Hadoop (if you must), just to name a few SQL Big Data stores?

            that’s why I want to suggest to you to participate in my article, and write a personal forecast about successful java developer in 2016.

            My forecast is: Stick with proven tech, avoid all hypes, unless you have a very good reason to use hype tech (you probably don’t). Don’t worry. The “Old Elephants” will learn the new tricks.

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