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Go or No Go: What is Golang and Why It’s Perfect For Your Project

Introduction Golang

Go Introduction

When you think of “developer-friendly” languages, what comes to mind? Probably something like Python or JavaScript. But there’s a new contender in town: Go (or Go). Go as a “new” programming language has been on the rise when it comes to back-end development, for starters it has some robust benefits that other programming languages don’t have or lack of.

In this article, we’ll explore it from both developer and project owner perspective, also what makes it so popular among developers and why you should consider it for your next project!

What is Golang Programming Language or Golang_

What is Golang Programming Language or Golang?

Go or also known as Golang is a general purpose programming language created by Google. A general purpose language means you can use it for web development (like Node.js) and specifically cloud & network programming.

The idea behind Go creation was essentially to create a new programming language that is fast, simple, and easy to learn and use. So this new language that can be implemented anywhere – from embedded devices to large cloud services.

We say Go was “new” because Go was first announced in November 2009—exactly 13 years old this month. Go syntax and features in some way are similar to C, as Go was formerly written in C.

Golang Benefits

Golang Benefits

  • Simple to use

    Other than its simple syntax, Go also offers various tools from the get go, such as templating, test library, and more. Meaning you’ll be working with fewer dependencies and simplistic code.

  • It’s high performance.

    Because it’s a compiled language, a language that is first translated into the machine code directly before execution, making Go more efficient and faster. Compare this to interpreted programming languages such as JavaScript and Python.

  • Large support

    While Go can be considered a new programming language, its popularity and support is large. You’ll find a lot of resources and support online, as well as a wide range of frameworks, tools, and libraries to choose from. Don’t forget that numerous IDEs or code editors now support Go.

  • Efficient for scaling and concurrent applications

    This is probably the number one offer from this language to the developer. Inside Go, there is Goroutines, it is a lightweight and fast-to-start thread that can be used to run multiple tasks concurrently. It also includes a garbage collector to automatically clean up unused objects, making it easier for developers to manage your memory.

What is Golang used for_

What is Golang used for?

The following list are a few examples of why and where Go is used in various kinds of platforms/applications:

  • Twitch

    A video streaming platform that hosts millions of hours of livestream video and billions of chat messages every day. Twitch utilizes Golang’s advantages such as scalability, simplicity, and good concurrency to handle its high loaded system.

  • PayPal

    If your app is like PayPal, where the users are worldwide and reliability is a priority, you need to avoid a slow development process because you’re always scaling. PayPal previously worked with C++ but moved to Golang, within 6 months the overall development became more optimized and efficient.

  • Uber

    Another popular company that has positive experiences with Go in their application. Uber utilizes Go for its many services/microservices, such as geo-fence. The service reportedly has 99.99% uptime, with the small downtime caused by third party libraries.

Golang vs Rust

Golang vs Rust

You’ve probably heard of Rust and see it as a competitor to Golang. Both are general purpose languages and good for development at scale.

But, Go is easier to learn than Rust. As we mentioned before, Go has fewer complex syntax and fewer keywords. Then, If you’re looking for a language that can do everything from web development to system programming, Go might be a better choice than Rust.

One of the advantages Rust has over Go is its performance, when you’re processing large amounts of data and fine over sacrificing simplicity then Rust is generally better.

We would say that while they’re both modern, share some similarities, and obviously popular, Go and Rust in some ways are not really “competitors”, both have different approaches and different use cases.

Golang vs Rust Code

Go vs Rust syntax examples, source

Golang vs Python

Python is another popular contender for Go in backend development and also Artificial Intelligence (AI) programming. But we won’t touch the latter, instead let’s see their general similarities.

Go and Python share some of the same features including being easy to learn, having high-performance capabilities, being multi-paradigm languages, having garbage collection, providing support for concurrency, offering standard libraries with basic functionalities and avoiding dependencies.

But, in terms of performance, scalability, and speed, Go is ahead because of its concurrency and Python being not really known to be CPU or memory friendly.

Golang vs NodeJS

Golang vs NodeJS

By definition they’re very different, NodeJS is a runtime environment and Go is only a programming language. While both are very popular technologies for backend development, they’re not really comparable.

Although, there are a few things we could compare, such as: ecosystem, developer availability, and community. Unfortunately this time Go is behind in all of them, as NodeJS runs on JavaScript it follows JavaScript’s popularity and support.

Golang Tutorial

Golang Tutorial

As for you who’s interested learning Go straight away, there’s many resources to help you learn Go right now, such as:

  • go.dev/learn, official learning resources by Go
  • w3schools.com/go, e-learning style Go tutorial
  • learngo by inancgumus, a collection of handcrafted Go examples, quizzes, and exercise

Golang Playground

Go Playground is another great tool provided by Go themself, you can try to code Go directly in the browser.

Golang Playground

go.dev/play/

Golang Web Frameworks

Golang Web Frameworks

Commonly used for web backend development, Go has its own top choices of frameworks needed to build large scale or complex applications, to start let’s have a look at the top three list below:

  • Gin

    Gin is a web framework designed to be a micro-framework that provides the essentials needed for building web applications. Mostly used to build REST APIs for backend, Gin is also popular because of its simplicity and minimalist framework.

  • Beego

    Is an open source lightweight MVC framework mostly used for rapid development to build enterprise applications. It features an elegant, concise syntax with built in features for routing, controllers and views that allow developers to focus more on their business logic and less on repetitive boilerplate code.

  • Echo

    Echo is another minimalist web framework that’s also high performance and extensible. This framework is often compared to Gin. because both frameworks are fast, flexible, and reliable but have different use cases, pros and cons, and capabilities.

When to Hire Golang Developer

When to Hire Golang Developer

So, if you’re looking for a new addition of backend developer and want to know whether Go is the right choice for your project or company, check out these considerations:

  • Are you looking to build a software that will have a lot of services/microservices and cloud computing?
  • Are you upgrading to a web app or API with lots of processing power needed behind-the-scenes as part of an existing architecture? If yes, then again: consider Golang.

Go offers great performance with minimal resources required. This means better results at lower cost! The speed at which programs are written will also result in increased productivity for developers.

Golang Gopher

Lastly, talking about Go for the first time is not complete without mentioning its adorable and iconic mascot, Gopher!

Golang Gopher

You can read more about its origin, behavior, and evolution in Go’s official blog right here.

Conclusion

Go is a great language to work with. It’s simple and powerful, making it ideal for projects where you don’t have time to deal with complicated code. It also has a growing community of developers working on open source tools that make Go even more useful than ever before.
Already have a Go project in mind? Or you want to hire someone who knows this technology well? Then reach out here!

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