Should I use Golang or Node.js for my Next App?

Faith Chikwekwe
6 min readMar 11, 2019
Image by Tiyani Ma on Unsplash

When I started working in backend development, Node.js was my training ground. As the name suggests, Node is a backend framework built on top of Javascript. For many modern developers, Node has been easier to use, more popular and more reliable than older options like PHP.

I recently began learning to build websites and applications in Golang (or Go). Both Node and Go came into existence in 2009, and while they are both pretty popular with back-end developers, Go has some significant differences from Node.

  • Popularity: Node.js is built on one of the most popular programming languages, while Go is still gaining steam.
  • Abstraction: Golang is a programming language that was made for server-side execution making its performance comparable to C or C++. Node.js on the other hand is a framework for writing Javascript that can be executed server-side. It is generally slower than Golang.
  • Threads: Golang was built with multi-threaded concurrency in mind. Node.js is single-threaded, and while it does make asynchronous work and concurrency possible with callbacks and worker threads, it is not ideal for this purpose.

This article will talk about the differences listed above as well as many other. Join me as we take a dive into both of these programming worlds.

Node is Everywhere

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The first positive point for Node is that Javascript, the language on which it is built, is ubiquitous across the internet. In the 2018 Stack Overflow Developer Survey, Javascript was declared the most popular programming language. With respect to frameworks, Node was the most widely used. Other Javascript libraries, namely React and Angular, took second and third places.

The popularity of Javascript definitely makes it worth learning whether you are a beginner in web development or just looking to learn something new. You may have already guessed that job-seeking developers who have Node on their resume can increase their widespread hire-ability.

Faith Chikwekwe

Software Engineer. Currently in the language development space. Passionate about well-documented code and open source.