Archive for February 16th, 2011

Google didn’t google “Go” before naming their programming language

Google’s Go programming language, which is designed for exceptionally fast compilation times with built-in support for garbage collection.

It’s too early to actually tell if Go will be a game changing new language, or just another one of Google’s geeky side projects, but with Unix co-creator Ken Thompson and operating system pioneer Rob Pike behind Go, it is, understandably, getting a lot of press.

But do a Google search for “go programming language” and you’ll find that Google’s Go isn’t the only Go programming language. In fact, there’s another language that has already had that name, and its creator is furious.

“Go!” creator Frank McCabe doesn’t understand how Google could have failed to be aware of the name of his own programming language. It’s an obscure language, but hardly something Google themselves couldn’t have found reference to in their own search engine.

As McCabe explains: “I have been working on [Go!] for the last 10 years. There have been papers published on this and I have a book.” That book, incidentally, is available for browsing over at Google Books, which appears to have scanned the whole thing in.

Needless to say, McCabe’s not taking this lying down: he’s demanding that Google change the name of their Go programming language so he doesn’t have to abandon the name of his own language, one he’s spent a better part of a decade fine tuning. I tend to doubt Google will heed the complaint, but I personally hope they do: steamrolling over a poor programming underdog is the very antithesis of “don’t be evil.”

via Google didn’t google “Go” before naming their programming language – Tech Products & Geek News |