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Going for practical usability is a perfectly reasonable goal. Ruby for
example, was developed with the mantra that the syntax should be about
the programmer and not the machine. The net result is extremely

The official tagline is "Go is an open source programming language
that makes it easy to build simple, reliable, and efficient software."
After trying it out and creating a few toy projects, I'm trying to
qualify exactly how it makes things "easier" than what already exists,
more "reliable" than programs that already exist (especially given
it's memory sharing), and what makes it more "efficient." Honestly,
these goals as stated are extremely broad and often compete with each
other. Reliability and efficiency are often at odds for example.

On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 12:03 PM, Hisham <> wrote:
> On 21 March 2014 15:38, Jeremy Ong <> wrote:
>> Elucidate me. What were Go's designers aiming for? A worser Erlang?
>> My point is that all the stuff they're going for is great and all, but
>> there's absolutely nothing unique about what they're trying to
>> accomplish as far as I can tell, and there are already options out
>> there to do what it does. The language semantics are pretty
>> uninteresting and lackluster compared to mutable types in Rust,
>> abstract data types in Haskell, process-oriented shared nothing actors
>> of Erlang, etc. It's just a prettier java maybe.
> IMHO they were aiming for something of _practical usability_. This
> doesn't necessarily mean being unique or presenting new concepts that
> will make it into programming language theory journals. Most of the
> concepts the Bell Labs guys brought together when they made Unix
> already existed in other operating systems at a time, often in more
> sophisticated ways (well, even the pun in its name reflects this
> thinking: Unix < Multics).
> I think they looked at the world around them, realized that in spite
> of all these advances that get PL people excited, most people out
> there are still using stuff like C to get the work done and tried to
> come up with something practical for this audience. I think it's a
> very worthwhile goal.
> -- Hisham
>> On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 11:28 AM, Roberto Ierusalimschy
>> <> wrote:
>>>> On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 6:26 PM, Hisham <> wrote:
>>>> > was born there", implying that it wouldn't be successful if not for
>>>> > Google's name). Or did I miss a pun?
>>>> I think Roberto got it exactly; Go's designers knew exactly what spot
>>>> they were aiming for, and achieved.
>>> Actually I meant exactly the pun that Hisham explained (and then said
>>> he did miss it). I do not think Go hit any sweet spot at all, unless
>>> what they were aiming was to be cool because it came from Google. I know
>>> (and respect) the names of its creators, but I cannot see anything in
>>> that language, from a technical point of view, to make it worth being so
>>> popular ("so popular" meaning whatever popularity it got).
>>> -- Roberto