A Comparative Study of Programming Languages — Go and Scala

Programming languages are important to pursue a successful data science career. Learn more about the popular languages -Go and Scala here.

Programming languages enable professionals to have lesser code work that is easier to understand. It helps big data professionals to organize their unstructured data sets. Also, the professional that uses the code is not always the one who created it. So, writing a code should be more communicative to avoid hindrance in the delivery of data science projects.

Mention not to say, programming skills are one of the must-have skills for big data professionals. Depending on the task at hand, your aspirations to take knowledge to its next level, the way your organization use data science, the efficacy in programming languages must get tuned.

Of many programming languages such as Python, Scala, Go, JavaScript, R, SQL, and many more, we have selected two prime languages — Scala and Go here for discussion.

Professionals chose one among these two depending on the project and client’s requirement specifications. Golang or Go, developed by Google is a statically typed and compiled language were the tools, source code, and compiler are free and open source. On the other hand, Scala is a general-purpose programming language that provides support for functional programming.

Let’s understand these two programming languages in detail here.

Go as a programming language

It is a programming language developed by Rob Pike, Robert Griesemer, and Ken Thompson. The syntax of Go language is somewhat similar to C language and provides dynamic-typing capability, garbage collection, type safety, variable length arrays, and key-value maps.

Features of Go language

The significant features of Go Programming include –

· Programs are simple and concise

· Faster time to compilation

· Supports environment adopting patterns

· Possess inbuilt concurrency support — such as lightweight processes, channels, and select statement

· Supports for type embedding and interfaces

· Produces statically linked native binaries without any external dependencies

Advantages of Go language

The programming language comes with distinct advantages. To mention a few, they are-

· Improves the availability and services reliability as it is faster than languages including Python and Java

· Easy for professionals who have knowledge in Java or C, as it has got the same procedural approach

· It is scalable as it takes up only 2KB of memory when multiple concurrent processes are running. It also runs efficiently without crashing the system.

· Organizations are depending more on Golang as it is a powerful open source and easy to learn.

Use cases of Go language

Golang benefits businesses in various industries. A few of the use cases are briefed here.

· Dropbox, the cloud-storage sharing services efficiently manages more than 500 million users on its network with Golang.

· Used for networking, cloud, and distributed functions such as web servers, APIs, and web applications.

· Used to build cornerstones of cloud-native computing such as Kubernetes and Docker.

· Replaces conventional counterparts. For instance, Teleport is the new version of the SSH server.

· Suitable for creating tooling and utilities as they can get launched quickly and packaged for redistribution.

With this, let’s move onto the other one, Scala.

Scala as a programming language

Scala (Scalable Language) is a multi-paradigm programming language created by Martin Odersky and integrates easily with functional and object-oriented languages. It is easy for professionals having a data science career as it is based on Java and every data science professional knows either Java, C, C++, or Python. It acts as an additional step up for their data science career.

Features of Scala

· Scala is extensible, object-oriented, and statically typed.

· Scala is functional, as every function is a value and every value is an object.

· Abstractions are used coherently and in a safe way.

· Scala is extensible and therefore it is easy to add new language smoothly.

· Java and Scala run on a common execution platform i.e., Java Virtual Machine (JVM).

· Scala facilitates writing codes in an immutable manner making it easy to apply parallelism and concurrency.

Advantages of Scala

A few of the advantages of using Scala include:

· Offers a convenient learning experience.

· Provides optimization for code complexity.

· Perform functions like Java but with fewer code lines.

· Interoperable and compatible with Java.

Use cases of Scala

Scala is useful for budding developers and experts as well. A few of the use cases are:

· Used extensively in big data and analytics as is preferred by data engineers.

· Used in trading services and concurrent systems owing to its scalability advantage.

· Acts a highly concurrent web framework for building APIs and apps.

· Create highly distributed apps inside a single application.

· Build libraries and frameworks as per domains.

If you want to choose any one of these two, then we suggest that Go is cost-effective for cloud-native applications. Scala seems to be the best option for big data and concurrent critical systems. However, it entirely depends on the client projects you are working into. So, as a data science professional, it is recommended to possess technical skills by possessing a relevant degree, earning big data certification, learning several programming languages, and excelling in soft skills and communication skills.


A Comparative Study of Programming Languages — Go and Scala was originally published in Data Driven Investor on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.