There are a lot of new programming languages lately. Jonathan Erickson calls
it the "programming language renaissance."
What's happening? I think the cause is partly that computers are now so powerful
that you can get decent performance without writing a native code compiler, and partly
that in Web-based applications, you can use any language you want, so there is
a prospect of new languages actually getting used.
Maybe most important is the example of Larry Wall, who showed everyone that if
you build it, they will come.