15 important reasons why programmers love dark mode

why do programmers prefer to work in dark mode, so why do they do that?

does working in the white or bright background have something wrong?

in this post, we’re going to discover the 15 important reasons why programmers prefer dark mode.

programmers prefer dark mode because is more comfortable

According to Grapecity, 70% of developers prefer dark mode IDE while coding or programming. That means 7 of 10 programmers are using dark light modes over birth ones. Programmers find dark light more comfortable and not eyes strains.

programmers say that syntax highlighting makes most’ codes lines colored. To clarify using a white background is harder to distinguish between lines. While dark modes are much easier and more significant for programmers.

dark mode help programmers to detect easily mistakes

if we make a comparison between dark and white mode we find that white mode is 90% more reflective than dark mode. You have everything white in the back while only a text or a code is in black. This reflectivity of the white color is distracting when it comes to coding.

Programming requires a high amount of focus to solve issues. In other words, is better to have a brighter code to notice among the darkness than the reverse.

The other thing is that a code syntax comes with different colors, sometimes you find some bright colors light yellow or green. So it is difficult to find or notice easily those scripts or texts than having a black background where they shine.

this image is the best proof of that to notice the difference.

why programmers prefer dark mode

most programmers prefer dark mode for this specific reason.

dark mode help programmers to focus on coding

the simple 2 statement that we can attribute is:

  • White mode makes you focus on the screen
  • Dark mode make you focus on the code

it has been proven that white background helps people to recover memories than the darkest background. This advantage is useful if you want to take or pass an exam to finally recover what you’ve learned in the classes or lectures.

But when we talk about programming being in front of the screen requires form you to focus on the code not to dream about things out of the job.

Sometimes when we work in some editors we can find 2 to 3 close colors like:

  • bright blue
  • bright cyan
  • bright purple

working with these nearly similar colors in white modes makes them harder to distinguish. So as a programmer you have to put more effort to differentiate between them. while in dark mode things are easier.

There is no blue light

Today we all hear about blue light and how it could affect our eyes, Even we can see today that most people are wearing anti-blue light glasses. While most phones have a night shield mode to use for nights.

according to health-Harvard, we should avoid looking at bright screens beginning 2 to 3 hours before going to bed. So if you work with a bright mode you might need to finish the work 2 hours before at night. if you want to fall asleep.

working with dark mode eliminate this problem because you won’t be exposed to blue light which is healthier and more effective in the work.

extending the battery life of laptops

We made experience, programming in two modes dark and bright to see how much that affects battery life and this is what we found in the table below.

using dark mode 

using light mode 

4h 56min

7h 01min

to clarify more about his experience we:

  • made the experience with MacBook pro which is considered the best laptop battery in the world
  • worked in dark mode programming ide
  • turned to google chrome into dark mode

So all our activities were in dark mode, and as we can see, we saved almost 3 hours of battery life which is 40% than a bright mode.

So for programmers who care about battery life, they prefer this dark mode, especially for students who have MacBooks, sometimes it gets hard to find where to plug a charger in amphitheater lectures.

it is easier to fix bugs

According to Coralogix:

  • On average, a developer creates 70 bugs per 1000 lines of code (!)
  • 15 bugs per 1,000 lines of code find their way to the customers
  • Fixing a bug takes 30 times longer than writing a line of code
  • 75% of a developer’s time is spent on debugging (1500 hours a year!)

so numbers don’t lie, most time that developers are spending is on fixing bugs and problems. As result, reflects on the earnings and productivity.

using a dark mode help programmers to find bugs or problems faster and fix them, especially for freelancer software developers who have tied deadlines. Most programmers say they rarely catch syntax errors on white modes.

birght mode is tiring

Most programmers work more than 8 hours a day, especially if you are a freelancer and under a deadline. Sometimes programmers can work up to 16 hours a day.

This is so consuming and tiring for the eyes, after 8 hours of work the human focus drop and the eyes get tired. Also, you might have headaches due to the light screen intensity that get exposed during a day.

But that gets worse when we use light modes than dark modes. Because the dark mode eliminates light intensity especially the blue light as we mentioned above in the article.


having darker modes give a programmer a sensation of professionalism, you might appear to someone like a genius hacker. So it is cool and sexy to have this background.

Because 90% of people think that programs are like that. while the reality is different you could watch this funny video below.

So why not gain some respect from people.

Dark mode is better for HSP and INTJ’s programmers

some programmers are born with some trait that makes them too sensitive to light or noise. In other words, they can’t concentrate in brighter environments, things become more distracting for them.

in the world, 15% of people have these treats, specialists call them HSP or highly sensitive people you could find more information in this video.

While there are other people who are called INTJ’s, they share the same traits you could discover more about them reading this article.

If you feel drained and can’t control yourself in a crowded or busy environment you might be a sensitive person. As a result, dark modes are quieter and do not stimulate these people which helps them to focus on their work.

programming was in dark mode first

programing job is an older job it is not you might think.

in 1950 the computer since engineers were implementing languages programs in computers. But all of them were using black backgrounds and green text editors as you can see in the image below.

why programmers prefer dark mode

In the 80s apple introduce their first computer Macintosh using the bright mode. But most programmers were still using dark modes until the beginning of the 90s when the operating system “Windows” started to get familiar and used by most companies.

In the 90s all computers hadn’t white or bright mode, they were using blue mode. So people weren’t using them until the release of Windows 95 which changed the world.

so for aged people working with a dark mode is nostalgic and remember them of how they were coding.

some programers can’t be exposed to a light for longer times

There is a survey made and found that 14 million US Americans are suffering from eyes diseases. While a big rate of them follow medical instructions consistently for their whole lifetime.

if we take as an example of “degenerative condition” as eye disease we find people who are suffering from it can’t use bright modes for screens it is harmful to them.

the doctor advises them to limit as much as possible their exposure to bright lights. So there are many cases who have these kinds of diseases.

some offices have poor natural lights

according to washingtonpost the District of Columbia is the most light-polluted region of the country with more than 200,000 times and is considered as one the darkest city in the US.

some offices don’t have natural or bright light which forces programmers to switch in a dark mode making an equilibrium between a screen light intensity and the light environments.

That helps them to not strain their eyes.

most programmer use more than 2 monitors

programmers work with multiple monitors there is no programmer who works with less than 2 monitors. While someones work with 3 or even 4 monitors at the same time.

Using bright mode means in its case, having a spotlight in front of your face while trying to fix and find problems.

The second thing is bright lights modes need to be set up and be adjusted. So the question is:

  • do programmers have time to set up all the monitor’s lights?
  • is possible to set up make these all monitors having the same brightness?

programmers are lazy and busy at the same time, so they don’t have time to lose in that. While with one click everything becomes in the same color.

programmers can code without bothering people

in some cases using dark mode becomes an obligation to not disturb the people around you.

For instance, if you have a roommate who wants to sleep while you still working on your computer switching a dark mode is a solution to not bother him and avoid having conflicts with him.

But in this case, you will need to have a MacBook air because of this reason.

The second example is for a software developer who travels a lot, coding in a plain requires you to switch to dark modes if you want to continue the work without any reclamation against you.


programmers prefer dark mode because it has a lot of advantages that make them adopt this mode.

The 15 reasons or advantages that we listed in our post were are the most important and famous that programmers recognize.


Yassin ajanif is a physics graduate and electromechanical engineer width more than 5 years in the field. My goal and my team are to share our experience to help you succeed in your career as a stem major. we talk about all tips, problems, and struggle STEM students face in their career and how to overcome them.