I found an awesome chart on choosing a language. Even if you're already working professionally with a particular language, it's nice to see the other options along with the Lord of the Rings comparisons.
I'm about 2 years into the Java path in Hawaii. It seems about right except for there being a lot more .NET jobs. Unfortunately, I don't think there are too many startups for that path in software as a career; they exist, just not as much as you would find elsewhere.