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Last post Author Topic: Google Go  (Read 10939 times)

Ehtyar

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Google Go
« on: November 11, 2009, 07:35:52 PM »
We'll dispense with the unnecessary "Google is evil, despite what they say" diatribe and get right to the good stuff: Google have opened up a new programming language that they're calling Google 'Go'. It's based heavily on C but it looks to me like it's a little more "functional" in terms of syntax. Their goals were apparently faster compile times (were they thinking of C or C++?) and a more expessive syntax (hence the "functional" bit I guess).

Ars (as usual) has a good write-up here, and the official site is here. I haven't had a chance to try it myself, but if anyone else has please let us know what you thought.

A Google TechTalk has been posted here.

go.jpg

Ehtyar.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2009, 08:13:40 PM by Ehtyar »

Deozaan

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2009, 09:37:33 PM »
I just watched the video. Admittedly there were a number of parts that were above my level of understanding. What I did understand sounded very interesting.

I'll be keeping my eye on it. :)

Thanks for pointing this out, Ehtyar!


mouser

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2009, 12:15:19 AM »
Maybe someone wants to make a "Go" app for NANY 2010?

I haven't taken a look at the language yet, but i think it's a bad sign that it has such a pretentious and, worst of all, search-engine-unfriendly name.  That name virtual guarantees you would have an extremely difficult time searching for help on the language (unless of course the company that controls the dominant search engine can bias search results.. oops.. conflict of interest anyone?)  Seriously though, that is an extremely stupid and spoiled-brat-like decision to make regarding naming a language.

rgdot

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2009, 12:47:00 AM »
Not sure if this will be a big issues but:

"Reported by fmccabe, Yesterday (28 hours ago)

I have been working on a programming language, also called Go, for the last 10 years. There have been papers published on this and I have a book.
I would appreciate it if google changed the name of this language; as I do not want to have to
change my language!"


http://code.google.c...o/issues/detail?id=9

mouser

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2009, 12:54:09 AM »
very interesting find rgdot.  now the normal way big corporations deal with such problems is just to throw money and job offers at the people they infringe on and then just keep on truckin'.  let's see if google is any different..

Jibz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2009, 02:47:03 AM »
It is an interesting choice to release a language with compilers available for only Linux and OS X .. I would have expected a Windows installer to be the first thing they would make sure to offer :D.

Ehtyar

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2009, 04:58:18 AM »
I haven't taken a look at the language yet, but i think it's a bad sign that it has such a pretentious and, worst of all, search-engine-unfriendly name.  That name virtual guarantees you would have an extremely difficult time searching for help on the language (unless of course the company that controls the dominant search engine can bias search results.. oops.. conflict of interest anyone?)  Seriously though, that is an extremely stupid and spoiled-brat-like decision to make regarding naming a language.
I have to say Mouse Man that I totally understand where you're coming from. Having installed Windows 7 at RC as my primary desktop OS, I have suffered greatly at the hands of those who would create a product that doesn't handle searches well. I feel your pain!!

It is an interesting choice to release a language with compilers available for only Linux and OS X .. I would have expected a Windows installer to be the first thing they would make sure to offer :D.
Agreed, though porting it from gcc to MinGW will probably be a bitch. Since they already had it for gcc I suppose they expect to (or someone to) port it now anyway.

I have been working on a programming language, also called Go, for the last 10 years. There have been papers published on this and I have a book.
I would appreciate it if google changed the name of this language; as I do not want to have to
change my language!"
very interesting find rgdot.  now the normal way big corporations deal with such problems is just to throw money and job offers at the people they infringe on and then just keep on truckin'.  let's see if google is any different..
If that. I'd imagine Google could easily get away with not giving a crap, there was a project called "go" on Google Code when they chose the name after all.

On an unrelated note, does anyone think this language is distinctive enough to be worth breaking away from C for? (assuming you're still using C, no comments in that vein plzkthx)

Ehtyar.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 05:01:58 AM by Ehtyar »

mouser

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2009, 05:03:31 AM »
I just watched the talk, my initial impressions:
1. They are very focused on compilation speed and some design decisions are driven by that; may be interesting to some -- for me that's wrong direction -- i'm much more willing to give up compilation time for cleaner language design.
2. The talk made a big point about reducing the amount of typing required when coding, to get more done faster and funner.  Again for me personally i feel this is going in the wrong direction.  I would rather have more verbose explicit clear code.
3. The syntax.. doesn't do anything for me.  I like the focus on removing ambiguities though -- which seem largely a result of bad planning and evolutionary development of languages like c/c++.  Like most languages i can't help but feel some eccentricities are there just to satisfy the designers egos.  I'd like more consistency and less flair.
4. The concurrency and channel stuff -- that was the only stuff i actually enjoyed and which seemed nice and interesting to me.
5. Loose typing and interfaces -- good concepts -- talk sort of implied this was an invention of Go, which it is most definitely not -- lots of cutting edge programming language designers have been working on such things for quite some time, and it's a hot area of research.
6. In summary -- bleh, don't like it, and don't like the focus of the designers.  But I like some of the simpler the concurrency stuff.  Bring on the next contender language.

I also have the distinct impression that this is not ready for prime time -- but i suppose you can't really blame google for all the publiclity they get from something like this.  Most new languages toil for years before anyone notices.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 05:06:44 AM by mouser »

40hz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2011, 08:02:30 AM »
Well...it's been about two years since Go was discussed in this thread.

I read a very interesting article recently by Jörg Walter on the language. It is written by a real live programmer who is using Go on a real live project. (Pretty rare that!) Some of his insights and observations make me want to take another look at this language.

Quote
The Go Programming Language,
or: Why all C-like languages except one suck.

2011-06-07 by Jörg Walter <golang@syntax-k.de>


Introduction

This was meant to be a review of the Go programming language developed since 2007 by Robert Griesemer, Rob Pike, and Ken Thompson at Google. By now, Ian Lance Taylor, Russ Cox and Andrew Gerrand have joined the core team. It is a C-like language with some features of dynamic scripting languages and some novel (at least in the field of general purpose languages) approaches to concurrency and object orientation. It is intended to be a systems programming language, which is why this review pits it against other C-like languages and not against scripting languages.

During the writing of this review, I noticed that many aspects of Go deserve a more detailed explanation before they can be evaluated. Go simply is different, you can't judge it from a classic OO background. So this is as much an introduction to Go as it is a review. I'm new to Go myself. Writing this helped me to understand what Go does and is, but keep in mind that I am still in the middle of my first Go application. I've coded in lots of languages, so I'll compare Go to aspects of many of them.

Go is young. It has been declared stable only this year. With this review, I also hope to contribute to the discussion about the future direction of Go, making it a truly awesome language. This includes pointing out the deficiencies that still exist.

Rant about C-oid languages

I am always interested in new programming languages. Usually, I use convenient, dynamic languages like JavaScript, Perl or lately Python. Most of the time, I prefer readability, maintainability and development efficiency over raw benchmarked speed. Premature optimization is usually not worth it. Security also matters, and scripting languages protect you from the world of buffer overflows, format string vulnerabilities and all the other low-level attacks (assuming the runtime itself isn't exploitable).

But there is a downside to those languages mentioned. They don't scale well, and my work encompasses everything from 8-bit MCUs via embedded ARM systems and smartphones through classic desktop applications. I tend to use C(++) for them, but then my expressiveness suffers a lot. No convenient string operations, clunky regexes that need external libraries, manual memory management, and of course all the security nightmares of the last 40 years. But for what it does well, it's nearly as fast and memory-efficient as you can ever get.

So there's something fundamentally lacking in the low level language space. What we use to write low level tools and operating systems is decades old and oblivious to the challenges of today's system environments. Why this is so I want to show here. It only covers languages of C descent style, since that's what people are accustomed to, but you could easily add entries about Pascal, Modula, Oberon, Smalltalk, Lisp and what else has once been at the core of a computer system.


What follows is one of the better written discussions of programming languages and language design that I have read in a long time. Although I'm not what I'd consider a coder, I am still very interested in language design and information architecture. So even though I'm sure I don't get the full import of some of the things Herr Walter talks about, I still got a lot of 'food for thought' out of the article. Recommended reading. :up:

One comment in his "rant" (I highlighted it) made me smile because of something I'm working on:

Quote
One very inportant thing many people missed is that a programming language is a tool. Once upon a time, I was deep into Perl 5, learning all the black arts over time. But do you know what was the real reason to stay? It wasn't the beauty of the language that fascinated me (there is little). Partly, it was the meta-trickery you could pull off and get away with it, that appealed to my hacker heart. But the real reason was the package archive and the ad-hoc way you could Just Write Code. These enabled me to solve real world problems in less time than otherwise.

That's why I program AVRs in C, GUI stuff in PyQt, really old GPUs in ARB_vertex_program assembler instead of GLSL, lightweight GUI stuff in C++/Fltk, Emacs in Lisp, my homebuilt embedded car MP3 player in C after prototyping it in Perl, an ARM decompiler in Python, and yes, web services meant to be maintained independently in PHP. I hate PHP, but it's the right tool for that job. So get over it and begin producing things with what works for you, check the whole picture, and keep rechecking it.

This is what I expect of Go, and currently it seems to fulfill that. I have seen lots of things that can go wrong over time, no one and nothing is safe. But I am a chronic early adopter. And the things I do, I do as hard as I can. If you want to know how it worked out, watch this space.

But enough of me writing about what's been written. Read it in the author's own words here.

 :Thmbsup:

-----------------------
(Note to moderators: may want to move to a new thread if you think this one has been :rip: too long.)


« Last Edit: June 25, 2011, 12:36:07 PM by 40hz, Reason: fixed spelling »

mouser

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2011, 08:25:31 AM »
Thanks for the good link 40hz, I'll be reading the article  :up:

cranioscopical

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2011, 09:57:03 AM »
Quote from: 40hz
Read it in the author's own words here.

Lucid, knowledgable, and entertaining!

Renegade

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2011, 09:23:03 PM »
But enough of me writing about what's been written. Read it in the author's own words here.

Some entertaining stuff in there:

Quote
Java

You didn't really think I would forget Java in my rant about C-oid languages, did you? Now, Java is almost the solution. Almost, were it not for reality.

But he does set off on a pet peeve of mine...

Quote
C#

I almost forgot this one. I actually did forget it, until feedback reminded me of it. Frankly, I hardly know C#. As a language, it seems to be nice, a great evolution of C and C++. What makes me stay away from it is the non-free nature.

Sigh... Same old same old...

He says nothing useful about C# at all. The sum of it is "I don't like Microsoft". I was hoping for something useful. Oh well...

But he does address Objective-C, and I really don't see the different between Obj-C and C# as far as his complaints go. As far as I can see, Obj-C is worse as it isn't even standardized. Sigh... Sounds more like a "let's all be cool and hate Microsoft" band-wagon. I just get sick of it. It's tired. Get over it.

In the end, he's simply not rational there. And not rational in the same way as my Apple hatred is irrational. It's not very productive. But at least I can admit it.

Then he goes on to praise Go with the same reasons that he gives for rejecting C#:

Quote
Remember this is a real-world language. And it is there. And it works. What use is a beautifully constructed language that doesn't get stable, finished or fast enough for real-world problems? It's easy to nitpick on details, but to make it a real product, you need to address all constraints. That's what Go does.

Meh... I suppose I just don't see much of a point to Go. It doesn't seem to solve any problems for me, and only seems to add on an additional learning curve, though the syntax is very very C-ish, and wouldn't really present much of a problem to learn. Still, it's new, and I don't see much in the way of a community or support, so it seems kind of pointless for me. I really only care about getting things done as quickly as possible. Go doesn't address that for me. Maybe in a few years that will change though.

What I would like to see in a language is:

It can be used both compiled and scripted
It has wide support in platforms
It has wide support in browsers
It can interact with components/libraries from other languages easily
It has a large community
It has solid third party component/library support

I don't know of any language that has that. The computing community simply won't ever get its act together and address those first 4 points. It's just too fragmented. Everyone is always running off and developing their own language to solve all the same problems that some other language has already solved, but instead, they're solving the problem a different way. I quite frankly don't care HOW you solve the problem as long AS you solve the problem. Semi-colons are irrelevant to me. Curly braces don't matter. Whether you use := or == or === or = or or => or >> or << or ? or whatever, I don't care. I only want to get as much done as possible with as little work as possible. I'm lazy. I admit it. :)

I think I'll be making the plunge into HTML5 and JavaScript development soon. I'm dreading it though. JS doesn't meet #4 above, which seems limiting. I'm just not a fan of JS. It just seems slow and clunky. I suppose I'm somewhat jaded though after suffering through so many years of crappy JS on sites that doesn't work.


Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

40hz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2011, 07:09:09 AM »
@Ren - I think he also said his big issue with C# is that it isn't officially multiplatform, and likely never will be. Even worse, Mono (C#'s so-called 'open source alternative') is in the same position as any capital prisoner: it's already legally dead. All that now remains is for Microsoft to set the date for its execution.  :)

P.S. The article was released under Creative Commons share and share alike. Feel free to republish and add to it subject to the attribution rules. I think it would be great if it sparked some serious yet humorous dialog and became a 'living' document. That's the sort of thing that often goes on to provoke real changes. :Thmbsup:
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 07:15:48 AM by 40hz »

steeladept

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2011, 07:53:14 AM »
it's already legally dead. All that now remains is for Microsoft to set the date for its execution.
Um, didn't Microsoft officially sanction Mono?  I mean wasn't that what all the hype around Mono was for - it was a Novell project utilizing the MS-Novell agreement to gain access to the core components so they could code it against MS reference data?  Of course now that Novell is dead, I am guessing Mono is too, or soon will be; but I thought part of the agreement included the MONO project and it's endorsement by Microsoft was at least partial proof of that.

Renegade

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2011, 08:10:15 AM »
Hooray for Miguel~!

The same guy that brought you GNOME...

Is continuing MONO~!

http://xamarin.com/



It's not dead. It's simply changed bodies. Kind of like Doctor Who.

NOW try and tell me that Mono isn't uber-fucking-cool~! :P :D  ;D  8)   :Thmbsup:

Like try and tell me that you've never fantasized about having a TARDIS... :P
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 08:14:02 AM by Renegade »

40hz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2011, 08:19:00 AM »
it's already legally dead. All that now remains is for Microsoft to set the date for its execution.
Um, didn't Microsoft officially sanction Mono?

No. They just agreed not to assert a patent claim against (admittedly the lion's share) of Mono in it's present form. But there's still considerable wiggle room in what they agreed to such that it's not a completely done deal. And they continue to insist on their own license rather than one of the standard open source agreements.

So what you have is Mono giving de facto acknowledgement that Microsoft's IP is very much a part of Mono. And accepting a 'culturally compatible' (mostly) license from Microsoft. In short, without realizing it, they've agreed to Microsoft's argument that Mono is C# and accepted a Microsoft license for it.

Now all it will take is a small change to either the license or the product to start the ball rolling. And once again it's back to "embrace, extend, extinguish."

Will Microsoft do something like that? Hard to say. They've done worse (and also behaved nobly) in the past. That uncertainty is enough to make me prefer to go my own way rather than accept a handout like this one. And C# isn't the final word in languages anyway. Why not just do it better and be done with it?

Just my 2¢ - and there are many who will and do strongly disagree with me about this.

Which is why the whole Linux/FOSS movement is so interesting to be involved with  ;D
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 08:21:07 AM by 40hz »

steeladept

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2011, 08:32:27 AM »
@Reg

That is awesome.  I do hope they achieve everything they set out to do.  If they can make it cross-platform with parity to the current version of .Net, I would find that ideal (as would many others I am sure).  I know in the past the best they tried to achieve was parity with the previous version of .Net.

@40Hz

That is an important distinction I hadn't particularly considered the details of.  I generally program (if you can call it that) in Java when I try to do something beyond a simple script; but there are issues there too.  Still, I can't help but like C# and with Mono, it is conceptually perfect for what I would want to accomplish.  Of course Java is too, generally speaking.  I just find working with graphics more than a little bit easier in .Net, but maybe I just don't know the Java graphics packages well enough.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 08:40:30 AM by steeladept »

Renegade

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2011, 08:57:29 AM »
This is pretty off topic now...

I'm not holding out for parity. Even the previous version is a massive accomplishment.

Microsoft is a massive company. For ANYONE to match them in .NET is astounding.

As for the specter of an "evil MS" looming over things... I just don't buy it. I can't see it being in Microsoft's best interests to sabotage C#. To me, it just doesn't make sense.

Yeah, it's been a bumpy ride with Mono and the Novell/Attachmate situation. But it's looking up.

The Mono team is a die-hard bunch of guys that have supported the product in unimaginable ways. THEY WILL TALK TO YOU AND HELP YOU! Try and find that level of support anywhere. I've not seen it. By far, the best support I've seen anywhere for anything has been with those guys. Praise? There isn't enough out there for what I've seen from them.

I simply can't ignore that.

I like to think that I deliver a superb level of support for my customers... And I KNOW that I deliver far better support than average (at a minimum). And they put me to SHAME!





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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

40hz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2011, 09:31:01 AM »
@Ren- don't get me wrong. I don't consider Microsoft evil. I actually like them for the most part.  But they are the 800 pound gorilla in the room.

So my approach to Microsoft is the same as my GF's approach to horses. She's owned and ridden them her entire life. And she's a certified riding instructor. She hangs around the horses because she likes them and respects them. But there's just no way she's ever going to completely trust one. Because they're big animals. And strong. And fast. And they have a mind of their own, and agendas separate from ours. And they sometimes get nasty or spook for no apparent reason.

When that happens it's easy to get seriously hurt or fatally injured if you aren't prepared for the possibility.

It's not that horses are evil, or viscous, or insane. They're just big-ass animals. And that's a dangerous thing to forget, even for a moment, when you're around one.

I approach Microsoft the same way.  :)




« Last Edit: June 26, 2011, 09:32:59 AM by 40hz »

steeladept

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2011, 10:02:59 AM »
I like that approach.  I think I am somewhat similar, except in my budding developer stages where I don't even know what I don't know (well, okay, everything; but from what I understand that just means I am a developer  :D)  Anyway, back on topic, well off topic - whatever...

As I learn to do things in Java, I am still looking at how they are accomplished in .Net as well.  In part, I am definitely looking at Mono to allow me to develop on a linux box for windows using C#.Net.  The only real problem I ran into with the version behind issue was that the support I was looking for is in .Net 4 (maybe .Net 3.5), but not .Net 3.0 which is where they were last time I looked into it.

To truly get back on topic, however, I see Java and C# heavily supported everywhere, and I don't see the same kind of support for Go.  Given what advantages it *might* provide - well as a learning developer anyway - are far offset by the vast resources available in the other languages to tell me where I screwed up and didn't realize it.

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2011, 10:27:35 AM »
@40Hz - Sorry - Didn't mean to imply that. But I'm sure you've heard the more radical versions out there. Wary? Sure. But I think that goes for all vendors and for all open source as well.

The open source version is just, "What if they stop supporting it? Then I'm screwed, because I have no hope of supporting it myself."
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

40hz

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #21 on: June 26, 2011, 12:19:05 PM »
Question for the programmers here: is .Net that big a win for Microsoft? I don't see it as widely adopted as Microsoft seems to think it should be - but I'm an ousider to the trade so my impressions 'looking in' may not reflect the reality inside.  I ask because to me it seems most development is still "business as usual" 32-bit and MFC (or other non-Net tool) based. I'm guessing .Net only lurks beneath something like 10-15% of what's out there?

Comments, correction, or shared insights greatly appreciated. :)

steeladept

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2011, 12:37:38 PM »
I may not be one of the programmers here, but I do work for a large corporation in infrastructure support.  What I see most is Java, but .Net is creeping in where it can - pretty much anywhere they don't have a professional developer developing it.  In other words, most people see .Net as an easy way to accomplish what they want based on what they already know (basic).  Some are still working with VB6, but most have moved on to VB.Net because you can get the VisualStudio Express version for free and do what needs done in .Net with minimal learning curve.  Beyond VB/ASP.Net, I tend to see a lot of Perl/Python/Java/JavaScript programming (depends heavily on what, or who, the user already knows) outside the "programming" groups.  Those various languages tend to only be used for web development, though.

Renegade

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2011, 12:38:27 PM »
We are seriously off topic, but anyways...

Question for the programmers here: is .Net that big a win for Microsoft? I don't see it as widely adopted as Microsoft seems to think it should be - but I'm an ousider to the trade so my impressions 'looking in' may not reflect the reality inside.  I ask because to me it seems most development is still "business as usual" 32-bit and MFC (or other non-Net tool) based. I'm guessing .Net only lurks beneath something like 10-15% of what's out there?

Comments, correction, or shared insights greatly appreciated. :)

Yes. It is that big. Major games are programmed in .NET. Major sites are in .NET.

I've done software using 10 languages. In .NET. C#, VB.NET, F#, XML, SQL, C, C++, HTML, CSS, JavaScript. Only some are .NET languages, but you can roll it all together very nicely with .NET. It's that good. (Ok, maybe some stretching there, but still, it's all in the same program.)

Now, for 10~15%, I suppose that you really need to look at what markets you're talking about. Web? Desktop? Server? Mobile? Embedded? Other? Then there's the question of internal, external, whatever. It's a hard question to answer. I have no idea there. Qualifying the question is hard enough.

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Re: Google Go
« Reply #24 on: June 26, 2011, 12:39:38 PM »
I may not be one of the programmers here, but I do work for a large corporation in infrastructure support.  What I see most is Java, but .Net is creeping in where it can - pretty much anywhere they don't have a professional developer developing it.  In other words, most people see .Net as an easy way to accomplish what they want based on what they already know (basic).  Some are still working with VB6, but most have moved on to VB.Net because you can get the VisualStudio Express version for free and do what needs done in .Net with minimal learning curve.  Beyond VB/ASP.Net, I tend to see a lot of Perl/Python/Java/JavaScript programming (depends heavily on what, or who, the user already knows) outside the "programming" groups.  Those various languages tend to only be used for web development, though.

That's one of the advantages to .NET, I believe. It's easy to learn.
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker