“Talk is cheap. Show me the code.” ~ Linus Torvalds
Before we decide which of the two solutions are better, let’s define how they work first.
A relatively new contender Golang, or Go, is a programming language created by Google which is quite similar to C and Python. Developers felt the need to create a new language because they were dissatisfied with available solutions – mostly C++. It currently incorporates features of Memory Safety, Garbage Collection, Structural Typing, and CSP-style Concurrency included in it.
Developers usually do not have a personal preference for a programming language. This decision largely depends upon requirements of the project and whether proper technical support is available.
We have identified six critical features that will be used as benchmarks to compare and evaluate these two languages. Let’s dive in.
When it comes to the raw performance, Go outshines JS, but in real performance, both are equal.
2. Scalability and Concurrency
Go’s scalability and concurrency are some of its best-selling features. By introducing ‘Goroutines’ (co-routines), users can now use multiple threads simultaneously, making it more reliable as well. While you can run your functions concurrently on Go, this sadly isn’t the case with Node.js.
Node.js is single-threaded hence everything has to be done in sequential order. Consequently, things can get a little messy and difficult during amendments.
3. Error Handling
Errors are displayed differently in both programs. In Go, errors are shown once the program is completed and corrections can only be made post completion. On the other hand, Node.js uses a more conventional approach of dealing with errors. Errors are displayed as soon as they occur and hence can be corrected immediately before moving forward.
Even though the application consistency is lower in Node.js, it is easier to make corrections in real time in comparison to Go.
4. Developers’ Tools
When it comes to Golang, the tools are somewhat limited in comparison to JS. This is because Go is relatively new and has not had enough time to develop tools to match Node.js. Therefore, if you were planning on mastering Go, you will need good research skills and a sound hand on manual configuration.
5. Developers’ Availability
Developer’s availability refers to the number of developers that are well-equipped to handle a particular language. The number of developers is dependent upon availability and access of educational resources relating to the coding language.
Availability and accessibility of educational resources is directly proportional to the number of developers. Therefore, for any task, it is easier to find developers who are familiar with Node.js compared to Go. So, if you are planning on hiring someone to code software for you in Golang, you might inadvertently be putting yourself at a degree of risk.
With time this is expected to change, currently more developers know Node.js compared to Go.
6. Learning Curve
On the other hand, Golang is relatively new, with fewer resources available online. Therefore, developers will have to carry out intensive research to get a decent grasp on it. Therefore, Node.js clearly dominates Go in this feature.
Winner Winner Chicken Dinner
We have compared 6 features for Node.js and Golang, currently the two most popular programs on the market.
Based on our analysis, Node.js dominates Go in 4 aspects and lags behind in 2. Since Golang is relatively new, it has less availability of developers, developers’ tools, has a tedious way of handling errors and the learning curve is shallow and longer than JS. However, this gap is expected to narrow in the near future owing to constant development in performance, scalability and concurrency.
In the end, project requirements will be the key determinant for choosing which technologies to use.