From my analysis, most of the evidence points to visual programming languages actually being better. But.... there's just one problem, it's not plain text. The advantages of plain text are so powerful, and so pervasive, that they're like oxygen: We're so accustomed to them that it's hard to imagine a world without it, where we'd all be walking around without helmets on. Why is plain text so important? Well for starters it powers version control and cut and pasting to share code, which are the basis of collaboration, and collaboration is how we're able to construct such complex systems. So why then don't any of the other apps use plain text if it's so useful? Well 100% of those apps have already given up the advantages of plain text for tangential reasons, e.g., turning knobs on a synth, building a model, or editing a photo are all terrible tasks for plain text.