Google has just released a new experimental programming language to the open source community.
Go is an attempt by the web giant to mix the dynamic, web-friendly attributes of scripting languages like Python with the performance and security benefits of compiled languages like C++.
The move follows similar attempts to gain a foothold in the world of core IT infrastructure, which include the creation of the Android mobile operating system (OS), the Chrome PC browser and the as yet unreleased Chrome OS.
Work on Go was started two years ago, but it was assigned a dedicated development team to work on it full time about a year ago. Team members include industry heavyweights Ken Thompson and Rob Pike, two of the creators of the Unix operating system, and Robert Thompson, who developed the Java HotSpot compiler.
Google said in a blog posting that Go is intended to be a systems programming language for building software such as web servers and databases. Its concurrent programming model is optimised for multi-processing and multi-core-based machines.
Described by the vendor as a “fresh and lightweight take on object-oriented design”, the language is intended to improve the handling of dependencies between reusable software components such as libraries.
"Here at Google, we believe programming should be fast, productive, and most importantly, fun. That's why we're excited to open source an experimental new language called Go," read the blog.
"Typical builds feel instantaneous; even large binaries compile in just a few seconds. And the compiled code runs close to the speed of C. Go lets you move fast."
Google said it has already tested the language internally, but is not currently using it to build user-facing applications itself as it is considered too immature. The firm hopes that releasing Go to the open source community wil l provide it with help in terms of future development.
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