Many readers are sending in the news about Go, the new programming language Google has released as open source under a BSD license. The official Go site characterizes the language as simple, fast, safe, concurrent, and fun. A video illustrates just how fast compilation is: the entire language, 120K lines, compiles in under 10 sec. on a laptop. Ars Technica's writeup lays the stress on how C-like Go is in its roots, though it has plenty of modern ideas mixed in: "For example, there is a shorthand syntax for variable assignment that supports simple type inference. It also has anonymous function syntax that lets you use real closures. There are some Python-like features too, including array slices and a map type with constructor syntax that looks like Python's dictionary concept. ... One of the distinguishing characteristics of Go is its unusual type system. It eschews some typical object-oriented programming concepts such as inheritance. You can define struct types and then create methods for operating on them. You can also define interfaces, much like you can in Java. In Go, however, you don't manually specify which interface a class implements. ... Parallelism is emphasized in Go's design. The language introduces the concept of 'goroutines' which are executed concurrently. ... The language provides a 'channel' mechanism that can be used to safely pass data in and out of goroutines."
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