Semicolon vs Apostrophe Frequency in Computer Languages

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

Here's a table of their frequency.

Semicolon and Apostrophe Frequency in Computer Languages
langsemicolon ;apostrophe '
(single quote)
Java8.0%0.5%
C6.9%0.8%
C++3.5%0.2%
Python0.2%10.6%
Ruby0.3%4.4%
Bash1.1%6.9%
PHP5.1%9.5%
Perl4.9%6.1%
JavaScript5.2%6.8%

see chart at Computer Languages Characters Frequency

If you code {C, C++, Java}, then semicolon is far more frequent.

If you code in {Python, Ruby, Bash}, apostrophe is far more frequent.

If you code in {PHP, Perl, JavaScript}, apostrophe is still more frequent.

And in English, the semicolon is almost never used, apostrophe is used often. (For example, “it's”, “that's”, 'single quotes', ….)

See also: Alternative Keyboard Layouts

Language Syntax

if you want to look at the syntax of languages, see:

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