Advantages and Disadvantages of Go
In this tutorial we will discuss about what are the advantages and disadvantages of Go programming language.
1. Simple syntax
Go syntax is simple and concise and the language is not bloated with unnecessary features. This makes it easy to write code that is readable and maintainable.
2. Compiled language
Golang is a compiled language, which means the code written is directly translated into formats that a processor understands.
3. Go compiler
In addition to its quickness as a compiled language, the Go compiler offers additional benefits like being able to check for errors, easier deployment and the ability to optimize your code for efficiency.
4. Easy To Learn
Picking up Go is easy for software developers, particularly if they already have a solid foundation in C or Java.
While the keywords and syntax may slightly differ, Go has the same procedural approach that programmers would familiarize in no time.
5. Static linking
The Go compiler supports static linking. The entire Go project can be statically linked into one big fat binary and it can be deployed in cloud servers easily without worrying about dependencies.
6. Fast compilation
The Go compiler is pretty amazing and it has been designed to be fast right from the beginning.
7. Garbage collection
Go uses garbage collection and hence memory management is pretty much taken care automatically and the developer doesn’t need to worry about managing memory. This also helps to write concurrent programs easily.
Last but not least, Go is an open source project. You can participate and contribute to the Go project.
Because Go was built by Google, it was designed with scalability in mind. As applications grow, they need to handle many smaller sub-tasks at the same time, like delivering HTML pages to individual web browsers.
Running simultaneous tasks within an application is called concurrency. Go has many built-in features designed to handle concurrency, most notably goroutines and channels.
Goroutines take up only 2 kB of memory, which makes it scalable when the need for running multiple concurrent processes arise. Unlike Java threads, which are blocking by nature, Goroutines are non-blocking.
Golang’s Goroutines are the opposite of what Java’s thread is, where the latter is a heavyweight that gobbles up memory. Technically, you can run millions of GoRoutines without crashing the system.
10. Comes with built-in testing tool
Developers love the fact that the language comes with a built-in testing tool and the fact that it has the simplest API. The efficacy of this tool makes it easy to test and profile executable codes.
Advanced features like running tests in parallel, marking the tests and so on are also available.
Despite the growing popularity of Go, it is not a perfect programming language. Well, no programming language is. Here are some cons that you’ll need to consider before adopting Go.
1. It’s A Young Language
Being a very young language, developers might find it difficult to make maximum use of the libraries. They might have to write the libraries themselves and there aren’t many books or online courses to help, while in doubt.
2. Runtime safety is not that good
Go is safe, but it doesn’t deliver the level of the safety that Rust provides. The safety level is compile-time only and to a certain extent runtime. Go focuses on the speed of production, and Rust concentrates on the safety aspect.
3. Golang Doesn’t Support Generic Functions
A function is a block of code that takes an input, processes it, and returns an output. Generic functions are a collection of different functions with the same name, but with undefined types of inputs during compile time.
Without support for generic functions, programmers will need to create multiple footprints of functions to deal with different types of parameters.
Just like C, which Golang is based on, the lack of support for generic functions can severely limit code reusability and decrease efficiency during development.
Other disadvantages include operator overloading, and problems in code duplication and meta programming because those cannot be statically checked.