Go — Functions (Basics)

Nikolaj Johannes Skole Jensen
3 min readMay 19, 2022


Functions are as important as in most programming languages. The first function you encounter when writing your first go project is the “main” function:

You can specify the inputs and outputs of functions, here we have two inputs: x & y, both of type ints. We also specify the output type, also of type int:

Though we only specified one output type in the previous example you are able to return several values from a Go function:

In the previous examples we have two input parameters: x & y, while we specified the type for each parameter explicitly there is a shorthand way to do it:

Another type of function in Go is Variadic functions. Which are functions that will take an arbitrary number of ints as arguments:

Here we take an arbitrary number of numbers (“nums”) of type int, summing those up and returning that sum. Calling a variadic function is just like calling other functions, you just have the possibility to have a dynamic amount of inputs to the function:

The third type of function in Go is the anonymous function. Anonymous functions are quite useful when you want to define an inline function, in places where defining it with a name does not matter.

Here is an example of a function that returns another function: an anonymous function:

The fourth and last type of function that I will touch on in this article, is the recursive function. Recursive functions are functions that continuously call themselves. This can end up in an infinite loop if you don't have a guard clause to cause the function to return. In the following example, this clause is defined by the if statement. A classic example to show recursion is calculating Fibonacci numbers:



Nikolaj Johannes Skole Jensen

Fullstack developer living in Denmark. Experience with both Web- and App development.