WebAssembly with Go: Powering the Web with Speed and Efficiency

GopherCon AU 2023 

@imJenal

 Jyotsna Gupta

@imJenal

Hi! I'm Jyotsna

  • What is Web Assembly
  • Why Web Assembly?
  • Uses of Web Assembly
  • Your first Go-Powered Web Assembly App
  • Running Tests in the Browser

Agenda

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WebAssembly (abbreviated Wasm) is a binary instruction format for a stack-based virtual machine. Wasm is designed as a portable compilation target for programming languages, enabling deployment on the web for client and server applications.

Web Assembly

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Source: https://webassembly.org/

Web Assembly

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Source: https://webassembly.org/

  • Announced in 2015, First Released in 2017
  • Standard language supported by browsers
  • Machine language
  • Binary format
  • Near-native performance
  • Integrated into the browser engine itself
  • Safely sandboxed
    • Not a plugin: not another Flash or Silverlight

What's wrong with JS ?

Why Web Assembly?

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  • Wasm is meant to operate hand in hand with JavaScript to take care of performance critical components of a web application
     
  • It is possible to make calls from JavaScript to WebAssembly and vice versa.

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Web Assembly is not meant to replace JS

Web Assembly is closer to the Hardware

  • Near-native performance
  • Efficient execution
  • Multi-language support
  • Seamless integration with JavaScript
  • Sandboxed execution enviroment

 

Why Web Assembly?

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Text

  • WebAssembly outperforms JavaScript and asm.js in terms of execution speed
  • JavaScript is an interpreted language, while asm.js is a subset of JavaScript optimized for performance
  • WebAssembly executes at near-native speed, thanks to its efficient binary format and ahead-of-time (AOT) compilation

WebAssembly vs. Other Web Technologies

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  • Performance
     
  • Portability
     
  • Flexibility
     
  • Security

Why Web Assembly?

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  • Games, Music applications (streaming, caching )

  • Virtual Reality /Augmented Reality

  • Image/Video editing, Image Recognition

  • Encryption, VPN, Remote desktop

  • CAD applications

  • Language interpreters & virtual machines.

  • Developer tooling (editors, compilers, debuggers)

Use cases

 

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Find other use cases: https://webassembly.org/docs/use-cases/

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Your First Go-Powered WebAssembly App

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Steps to perform

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  • Write some Go code
  • Compile Go code to wasm module
  • Write some HTML code
  • Copy js-glue files
  • Serve files

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main.go

package main

import "fmt"

func main() {
	fmt.Println("Go Web Assembly")
}

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index.html

 

<html>
<head>
    <meta charset="utf-8"/>
    <script src="wasm_exec.js"></script>
    <script>
        const go = new Go();
        WebAssembly.instantiateStreaming(fetch("main.wasm"), go.importObject).then((result) => {
            go.run(result.instance);
        });
    </script>
</head>
<body></body>
</html>

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Run the following commands:

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1. Compile to wasm:  
	GOOS=js GOARCH=wasm go build -o main.wasm

2. Copying js-glue files:
	cp "$(go env GOROOT)/misc/wasm/wasm_exec.js" .

3. Serve the files:
	goexec 'http.ListenAndServe(":9090", http.FileServer(http.Dir(".")))'

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Currently, that process is a bit cumbersome:

 

  • The test needs to be compiled to a wasm file.
  • Then loaded into an HTML file along with the wasm_exec.js.
  • And finally, this needs to be served with a static file server and then loaded in the browser.

Running Tests in Your Browser

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  • This tool automates all the 3 previous steps.
  • Type GOOS=js GOARCH=wasm go test, and it'll automatically executes the tests inside a browser
  • https://github.com/agnivade/wasmbrowsertest

May Be Just use the tool wasmbrowsertest

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  • Figma

  • Google
  • Microsoft
  • Unity
  • AutoCAD
  • Adobe
     

Companies Using Web Assembly

 

@imJenal

  • TinyGo ( https://github.com/tinygo-org/tinygo )
    • Go compiler for small places- Microcontroller, Wasm, CLI
  • Vecty ( https://github.com/hexops/vecty )
    • Build responsive and dynamic web frontends in Go
  • WasmGo ( https://github.com/dave/wasmgo )
    • CLI to compile Go to WASM & serve it locally or upload it
  • Shimmer ( https://github.com/agnivade/shimmer )
    • Image transformation in wasm using Go

The Power of Go and WebAssembly

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WASI: WebAssembly System Interface

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Resources

  • https://webassembly.org/

  • https://go.dev/src/cmd/compile/README

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https://slides.com/jenal/gopherconau2023 

GopherConAU 2023 Sydney || Nov 8 - Nov 10

By Jyotsna Gupta

GopherConAU 2023 Sydney || Nov 8 - Nov 10

GopherConAU 2023 | 8Nov -10 Nov | Sydney

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