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Planning a skillset for a fallback career [closed]

I'm not too certain this is a SO question, but I didn't think it belonged in meta either.

Long story short, I am bioinformatics researcher. I like to code, it's my favourite part of the job. I have been thinking for a while that if academia is not kind to me, I might seek a career in software development. My current contract is for three years and I would like to spend some time over the next 3 three years learning and practicing software development as possible.

Python seems like a popular language and it what I mostly use to do things for me, but I am also in heavy use of R.

So my main question is:

Are python and R good things to be learning with a sotfware dev goal in mind, and if so, is there any particular type of programming or software that might be useful to have experience with.

Hard questions to answer I know, but I thought I would get the answer from people who are in the know.

Cheers,
Davy.