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US coders half as productive as everyone else

International programmers write 16,700 lines per year -- Americans do 7700 lines

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Software developers should seriously consider relocating out of the US and employing European and Asian programmers, if the results of a Meta Group survey are anything to go by. According to the survey, which measured the productivity of 16,000 IT professionals, US programmers were half as productive as code-writers in the rest of the world. Irish, Indian and Mexican programmers came out at the top of the productivity tree. The survey, according to a CNN news report, calculated code-jockeys' productivity on the basis of the number of lines of code generated per year. US programmers averaged 7700 lines of code -- non-US programmers produced over twice that figure, notching up 16,700 lines. Meta Group's Howard Rubin, who conducted the survey, slammed US IT professionals for being "fat and happy" and encouraging unproductive behaviour. He also claimed US programmers were paid more, educated less and trained less than coders elsewhere. However, he admitted that more US coders had been pulled off interesting projects to fix Y2K bugs. ®

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