Go Developer Roadmap: GO (also called Golang) is an in-demand programming language, especially for people working with Google products. Go is used by many big companies, like Uber Medium, Dropbox, Salesforce, Netflix, IBM, and Twitter.
For job seekers of all levels, Go is a fantastic option. But where do you begin? What information do you require? Today, we’ll talk about the ideal way to learn Go and build a strong portfolio.
What is a Golang developer?
Golang (also called Go) is a statically typed, compiled programming language that was developed by Google in 2009. The language combines the efficiency of C++ efficiency and the readability of Python.
The Go programming language is used by Golang developers to create websites and apps. Working with Go and its full range of tools and frameworks is part of a Go developer’s job description. Most Go programmers also test and debug their code.
Most job postings for Golang developers require a wide variety of other skills as well, the most common being:
- Experience with scripting (Shell/PERL)
- Experience in application design using design patterns
- Experience using Git
- Knowledge of DevOps practices
The competition into Go is relatively low. It’s a simple language to pick up, and it comes with comprehensive technical documentation. For those who are familiar with the C programming language, switching to Go is pretty simple. So, if learning Go is simple, how do you go about getting a job using it? Let’s have a look at it in more detail.
Step 1: Learn the basics of Go
To become a Go developer, you must have a thorough knowledge of the language and its syntax. You can either install the language and teach yourself, or you can enroll in an online course to help you get started. A decent learning route for Go will look something like this:
- Filenames, keywords, identifiers
- Operators, types, functions, and constants
- Pointers, structures, methods
- Maps, arrays, slices
- Go CLI
- Error handling
- Goroutine, Channel, Buffer
- Panic, Defer, Error, Recover
- Go design patterns
Your learning path will largely depend on your background. If you are completely new to programming, Go is a great first choice. It is easy to learn and mimics other popular languages like Python and C++. For new learners, it’s best to start with the basics like filenames, keywords, and identifiers. Then, you can build your foundation with data types, operators, and and strings.
If you have some programming knowledge, it’s also a good idea to learn Go from the ground up, starting with the language’s distinctive properties. Go is designed on a different model than you’re used to, and it has a distinct approach to object-oriented programming.
Go aims to reduce typing and complexity using a minimal amount of keywords, so you will code less than other languages like Java. Keywords can be parsed without a symbol table, as its grammar is LALR(1). Go acts like a hybrid, imperative language, but it is built with concurrency in mind. Here are some of the unique features of Go:
- No function or operator overloading
- No implicit conversions to avoid bugs
- No classes or type inheritance
- No variant types
- No dynamic code loading or dynamic libraries
- No assertions or immutable variables
Step 2: Master Go libraries and other tools
Once you have the basics of the language down, you should move onto the add-on libraries and tools that make Go easier to use. Most companies will expect that you have experience with:
- Go dependency management tools
- Semantic versioning
- Scripts and repositories
- Go libraries
- SQL fundamentals
- Basic authentication
- Web frameworks and routers
- Relational databases (PostgreSQL)
The most important extra things to learn are frameworks, Go libraries, and databases. Many of the other skills can be learned along the way or on the job.
In terms of frameworks, is recommended to start with the web frameworks Echo, Beego, Gin, Revel, and Chi, with Echo being the most important for Go.
In terms of libraries, the most popular Go libraries are Go Kit, GORM, Gen, and CLI. Using good libraries and packages will make working with Go even easier. Each will have their own unique features, so it’s a good idea to pick one that aligns with your goals.
In terms of databases, it’s important to have some experience with relational databases, such as PostgreSQL or MySQL. Beyond that, knowledge of log frameworks can be useful, with Zap being the most important for Go.
Step 3: Learn testing with Go
Testing is an important skill that most companies will be looking for. Software testing is how we check if the actual software product matches requirements and actually runs properly once distributed.
As a Go developer, you’ll be building products for the real-world, so you need to test your products for usability and reliability. This includes:
- Unit testing
- Integration testing
- Behavior testing
- E2E testing
Unit testing is arguably the most important for new Go developers. There is a built-in
testing package in Go’s standard library. But, Go errs on the side of minimalism, so you may need additional tools for more robust testing, such as popular frameworks Ginkgo and GoCheck. Ginkgo can also be used to behavior testing and integration testing.
Step 4: Understand Go patterns
Most employers want to see that you understand Go’s design patterns. A design pattern is a repeatable, general solution to a commonly problem in software design. Different design patterns help to divide business logic or define structure to help with certain tasks.
Go offers similar design patterns to other languages that fall under these general categories:
The most important are creational (such as builder, factory, singleton), behavioral (such as iterator, observer, command), and structural (such as adapter, bridge, decorator).
If you are already a programmer, you may be familiar with design patterns and can start learning them in the context of Go. If you’re new to programming, the best way to learn these is to actually begin coding with them. Borrow some sample implementations and build around them.
Step 5: Start building your portfolio
Once you have these steps down, it’s time to start building things for your portfolio. This is how a company will see that you have real experience working with Golang. Also, it’s proven that the best way to master a language is to build functioning products with it, so the more you build, the more you learn.
Building out a portfolio includes:
- Completing online courses on Go
- Contributing to open source Go projects
- Building Go projects from scratch
- Implementing Go units in existing projects
- Coding classic algorithm problems with Go
- Completing courses on adjacent technologies (i.e. SQL)
You can really build anything you want to put your skills into practice, such as to do lists for personal needs, demo websites, puzzles, games, and coding challenges.
Start with an online course that offers a certificate. You can add this to your resume to prove you have the basics down. Then, focus on open source contributions on GitHub. This demonstrates that you can build real projects and know how to use a popular version control system.
Step 6: Practice Go coding interview questions
Once you have a solid portfolio, you can start practicing Go interview questions. This will help you prepare for interviews and learn more about the language you’ve just learned. Coding interview questions are not the end-all-be-all since they tend to be abstract, but they can really improve your code and help you work under pressure.
When you get an Go developer interview, you’ll be expected to answer these questions in time, so getting practice early on can’t hurt! It’ll also help reveal any gaps in your knowledge.
Some common questions include:
- What is a goroutine? How do you stop it?
- How do can check variable type at runtime?
- How do you format a string without printing?
- How do you concatenate strings in Go?
- What is Go 2?
- How do you initialize a struct in Go?
What to learn next
Congrats on making it to the end! You should be well on your way to becoming a Golang developer. Clearly, there is a lot that lies ahead. Where you start largely depends on your base knowledge, but it’s recommended to learn Go from scratch. Your next steps should be:
- Learn Go syntax
- Understand basic data types
- Build something using control structures
- Get practice with functions
- and more
To get started with Go, check out Educative’s course The Way to Go. You will learn the core constructs and techniques and dive intro advanced Go concepts like error-handling, networking, and templating. You’ll even learn the common pitfalls and patterns of efficient Golang developers.
Originally Published on : educative.io
Top 5 online resources to learn Go from scratch
This is a list of Top 5 resources you can use to start learning Go from scratch. Before going into the resources let’s see why I think it’s worth learning golang.
1. The GO Tour Website
One of the best places to start is the official Go Tour website: https://tour.golang.org. This is an interactive tutorial which you can use to learn Go by running your own code snippets on the website itself. The tour is divided into a set of modules each explaining a different concept with a couple of exercises at the end of each module. The interesting thing is that the tour is available offline just by running
go tool tour in your command line if you have already installed Go locally.
2. Effective Go
Effective Go is another official resource which is available for free from the offical Go website https://golang.org/doc/effective_go.html. I found it really useful especially because is not just a syntax reference but a more complete description on all the major Go features and constructs and how to use them effectively.
3. Go By Example
Another interesting place to find good examples when you have already understood the basics of the language and want to start hacking on is https://gobyexample.com. Go by Example is a website with the most common examples, from like how to work with JSON to how to create a buffered channel
4. The Go Bootcamp online book
There is a free online mini book on how to get started on Go called The Go Bootcamp which you can find at http://www.golangbootcamp.com/book/. It has a list of basic constructs and concepts you need to grasp in a new programming language (like control flows, interfaces, concurrency…) each of them are then linked with a interactive example on the Go playground
5. The Golang FAQ
The official Go website is full of amazingly good resources like the Golang FAQ section https://golang.org/doc/faq
6. Golang Cafe YouTube Channel [Extra]
I have recently started a YouTube Channel where I cover evergreen high-quality educational content about programming in Go (Golang). The channel covers any topic that you might need to learn intermediate to advanced concepts in Go. Feel free to check it out here https://www.youtube.com/c/GolangCafe
- General Development Skills
- Learn GIT, create a few repositories on GitHub, share your code with other people
- Know HTTP(S) protocol, request methods (GET, POST, PUT, PATCH, DELETE, OPTIONS)
- Don’t be afraid of using Google, Power Searching with Google
- Read a few books about algorithms and data structures
- Learn about implementation of a basic Authentication
- Solid principles, architectural & design patterns, ecc
- Basics of software testing (unit, integration, e2e)
- CLI Tools
- Web Frameworks + Routers
- Real-Time Communication
- API Clients
- Good to Know
- Task Scheduling
GO Developer Salary
The average golang developer salary in the USA is $132,500 per year or $67.95 per hour. Entry level positions start at $117,438 per year while most experienced workers make up to $160,000 per year.
Go Development FAQs
Is Go the right choice for every application?
No. Although Golang is ideally suited to many applications, there are those that don’t require high performance or could be better developed in another language, such as C, C#, or Java, with which we have decades of experience.
Is Go development cost effective?
Because of the way Golang was designed, developing applications with Golang is extremely productive and efficient, and results in safe software without runtime surprises. While having much better performance, Golang applications use far less server resources than other web development languages, like PHP and Python. Development with Golang saves you time and money with …
- Development productivity
- Less server resources
What are Go’s ancestors?
Go is mostly in the C family (basic syntax), with significant input from the Pascal/Modula/Oberon family (declarations, packages), plus some ideas from languages inspired by Tony Hoare’s CSP, such as Newsqueak and Limbo (concurrency). However, it is a new language across the board. In every respect the language was designed by thinking about what programmers do and how to make programming, at least the kind of programming we do, more effective, which means more fun.
Can Golang applications be implemented on my server?
Golang is cross platform and will build on a wide variety of operating systems. If you are running a modern operating system, more than likely you will be able to run Golang applications. There are pre-built binaries for the following:
- FreeBSD 9.3
- Linux 2.6.23 or later with glibc
- CentOS/RHEL 5.x not supported.
- Windows XP SP2 or later
Except for things like low-level operating system interface code, the run-time support is the same in all ports and includes a mark-and-sweep garbage collector, efficient array and string slicing, and support for efficient goroutines, such as stacks that grow and shrink on demand.
How will Golang development benefit me?
Development with Golang costs less from the start. In addition to the performance increase, often more than 400%, Golang applications are quicker to develop, easier to maintain, safer and less prone to having runtime errors.
Does Go support Google’s protocol buffers?
A separate open source project provides the necessary compiler plugin and library. It is available at github.com/golang/protobuf/.
Can I translate the Go home page into another language?
Absolutely. We encourage developers to make Go Language sites in their own languages. However, if you choose to add the Google logo or branding to your site (it does not appear on golang.org), you will need to abide by the guidelines at www.google.com/permissions/guidelines.html
5. What is Golang well suited for?
- Cloud Computing: – Cloud platforms provide servers and resources on demand, auto scaling is built-in. Golang applications can be quickly launched and efficiently respond to new servers and resources.
- Multi-core Performance: – Golang is a scalable language and has multi-core processor support built-in, so your application doesn’t need to be rewritten for additional cores. It is able to utilize all available CPU cores out of the box.
- Microservices: – The use of asynchronous input and output channels enable Golang applications to be interactive with web services without blocking web requests. Golang is well suited to building applications as a collection of microservices.
- Web Services: – Golang has support for the reading and writing of JSON, multiplexing and secure connections built-in, which make the creation of an API and Web services very easy and effective.
- Golang Standard Library: – Golang has an extensive standard library of functions, so you don’t need rely on or be to be tied to external frameworks.
- Concurrency: – Golang provides built-in concurrency, which enables you to carry out many processes at the same time via goroutines, which are much lighter in terms of resources than threads used by other languages like Java or C#.
- Golang is a fast, compiled language. – Golang applications compile quickly to machine level code, and run at speeds much faster than Python, PHP or Ruby and on par with Java without the requirement or overhead of a virtual machine.
What other companies use Go?
Go usage is growing worldwide, especially but by no means exclusively in the cloud computing space. A couple of major cloud infrastructure projects written in Go are Docker and Kubernetes, but there are many more.
It’s not just cloud, though. The Go Wiki includes a page, updated regularly, that lists some of the many companies using Go.
The Wiki also has a page with links to success stories about companies and projects that are using the language.