Andreas Schipplock (1) [Avatar] Offline
#1
Thousands are
created every year, some only used by but a handful of people,


I fell over the "but". But perhaps it was your intention to let your reader fall smilie.

programming languages try to strike
the perfect balance between ensuring that programmers make the least mistakes possible
and that programmers are as efficient at writing software as possible.


that doesn't sound well smilie. But it might just be an opinion here. The duplicate "possible" sounds bad and the distance from "as efficient" to "as possible" is very long.

I would leave it out as it's just a repetition of:

The first programming languages were designed and implemented to make software
development easier and less error prone


to this day it's still the same smilie.

There are very many libraries written in C and C++, many of which are very popular.


"very many" sounds strange here. "very many" is often used in a negative way so was that your intention? I could understand it though smilie...
dom96 (69) [Avatar] Offline
#2
Thank you for the feedback. I will try to improve the sentences so that there is less repetition, I'm not certain what you mean by the following though, can you elaborate?

I fell over the "but". But perhaps it was your intention to let your reader fall
mcampbell (10) [Avatar] Offline
#3
The use of "but" here is correct idiomatic English, but it is not widely used.
390708 (2) [Avatar] Offline
#4
"only" would work in place of "but" and is less idiomatic and jarring.
461110 (1) [Avatar] Offline
#5
"but a handful of people.." is perfectly valid English. It may sound a bit poetic, or lyrical, but what's wrong with that? We don't have to dumb everything down, do we?

Then again, maybe we do. Personally I was disappointed with the name change from Nimrod to Nim ––as the only connotations the word 'Nimrod" has for me are as a mythological hunter or, in the guise of the 'Nimrod Variations', a fantastic piece of music by Elgar. But I'm obviously not "awesome" or "kewl" enough to be in the target market.
390708 (2) [Avatar] Offline
#6
"but a handful of people.." is perfectly valid English.


It is, but "by but a handful of people" is not. The language should simply be

Thousands are created every year, some only used by a handful of people


As for

programming languages try to strike
the perfect balance between ensuring that programmers make the least mistakes possible
and that programmers are as efficient at writing software as possible.


"least" is wrong here, but the dual "possible"s are fine and stylistic. However, programming languages can ensure neither that programmers don't make mistakes nor that they are efficient. I would make it

programming languages try to strike
a balance between allowing programmers to make the fewest mistakes possible
while being as efficient at writing software as possible.


As for

There are very many libraries written in C and C++, many of which are very popular.


Try

There are many libraries written in C and C++, some of which are very popular.