Go has always been a simple language from its inception. Perhaps too simple. I personally think of Go as a (successful) MVP of a programming language. With garbage collector, channels and goroutines.

This simplicity is the reason why many developers, myself included, love Go. And at the same time why so many other developers hate the language.

Go getting better

While in core Go remain simple language, it does not prevents an evolution. There were big and interesting changes in a past

Go 1.22 language changes

Go 1.22 brings three interesting iteration related changes

  1. for i := range foo creates new variable, so the i := i trick is no longer needed
  2. for i := range int is [permitted] https://go.dev/ref/spec#For_range
  3. and last but not least, the rangefunc experiment

The problem

As explained in the motivation section of spec: add range over int, range over func. The Go standard library already contains structs iterating through something. Examples are bufio.Scanner and sql.Rows. Each type needs to implement own distinct ad-hoc way of iterating.

There are some attempts to provide a better API - gubrak does a great job in show-casing us that the method chaining in Go is possible.

	n := []string{"aa", "aaa", "aaaaaa", "a"}
	result := gubrak.From(n).
		Filter(func(s string) bool { return len(s) <= 3 }).
		Map(func(s string) int { return len(s) }).
	// Output: [2 3 1]

The obvious downside is it works on top of interface{}, so compiler is not able to catch any problem and in fact to use the API is much harder than the code examples reveals.

.Result() interface{}                  // ==> description: returns the result after operation
.ResultAndError() (interface{}, error) // ==> description: returns the result after operation, and error object
.Error() error                         // ==> description: returns error object
.IsError() bool                        // ==> description: return `true` on error, otherwise `false`

So gubrak taught me an important lesson - generics are a must.

A more popular example is lo. It uses generics and works on slices, so it is the most idiomatic library for Go up to this date. The obvious drawback is that working on slices does not allow the developer to combine more operations into a single one. And writing an inner code for a FilterMap operation is not a pleasant experience. Especially if the filtering rules are not trivial.

	n := []string{"aa", "aaa", "aaaaaa", "a"}
	result := lo.FilterMap(n, func(s string, _ int) (int, bool) {
		if len(s) > 3 {
			return 0, false
		return len(s), true


it is my answer. It builds on top of rangefunc experiment so it may become the idiomatic solution if the experiment is accepted. On top of that it uses generics and provides a method base API. Which is (type) safe to use.

	n := []string{"aa", "aaa", "aaaaaaa", "a"}
	slice := it.NewMapable[string, int](it.FromSlice(n)).
		Map(func(s string) int { return len(s) }).
		Filter2(func(index int, _ int) bool { return index <= 1 }).
	// Output: [2 3]

The method based API is the second choice in Go and everything is implemented through generic functions. Those do not have the limitation of a struct methods.

	n := []string{"aa", "aaa", "aaaaaaa", "a"}
	// maps string->int->float32
	s0 := it.FromSlice(n)
	s1 := it.Map(s0, func(s string) int { return len(s) })
	s2 := it.Map(s1, func(i int) float32 { return float32(i) })
	s3 := it.Map(s2, func(f float32) string { return strconv.FormatFloat(float64(f), 'E', 4, 32) })
	slice := it.AsSlice(s3)
	// Output: [2.0000E+00 3.0000E+00 7.0000E+00 1.0000E+00]

How the mapping works

The biggest limitation of a Go type system is that given type Foo[T any] struct all methods accept only the T and nothing more. This is a challenge to do for a Map operation, which works by translating T into V.

Yet the example above has a Map method. How is this possible? The trick is surprisingly simple. The struct itself must accept two type parameters T, V and Map returns the struct with type parameters swapped.

type Mapable[T, V any] struct {
	seq  iter.Seq[T]
	none V
func (g Mapable[T, V]) Map(mapFunc MapFunc[T, V]) Mapable[V, T] {}

Of course the trick only works well for two types. Using three or more would make the API hard to write and use. On the other hand mapping one type to another solves the majority of the cases. And anything more complicated is handled by simple functions and explicit variable passing.

How the Index works

One of my least favorite feature of lo is it forces the developer to pass the index parameter every time. Given the general verbosity of Go, especially the anonymous function syntax, this adds a lot of unnecessary code.

So it has been designed to avoid this. The index parameter does not exists and can be added via Index function only when it is needed. The consequence is that iter.Seq[T] is changed to iter.Seq2[int, T] so Filter2 and other methods must be used. As the compiler and gopls don’t allow the developer to use a wrong method, this is fine.

	n := []string{"aa", "aaa", "aaaaaaa", "a"}
	s0 := it.FromSlice(n)
	for index, value := range it.Index(s0) {
		fmt.Println(index, value)

Maps with an error

Error handling was a pain point of a gubrak (see ResultAndError, IsError and so). Not in it. MapError is a function that returns the iter.Seq2[V, error] from iter.Seq[T], so maps can fail and be processed later on.

	n := []string{"forty-two", "42"}
	s0 := it.FromSlice(n)
	s1 := it.MapError(s0, strconv.Atoi)
	for value, error := range s1 {
		fmt.Println(value, error)
	// Output:
	// 0 strconv.Atoi: parsing "forty-two": invalid syntax
	// 42 <nil>

Breaking the chain

One of the ideas I had was to break the chain. Imagine a situation where there’s a long chain of filters and some new complicated logic needs to be added in the middle. And the assigned developer loves good old Go and hates this functional chained non-sense.

	chain := it.NewChain(it.FromSlice(n)).
		Filter(func(s string) bool { return true })
    // break the chain
    m := magic()
    for s := range chain.Seq() {
        // here comes the new logic
    // continue the chain
	chain2 := it.NewChain(p.seq()).
		Filter(func(s string) bool { return len(s) > 2 })
	slice := chain2.Slice()

Github has working example which uses a channel and a goroutine in the background. I just can’t decide if this is good or a wrong idea.

Would love to hear any feedback about it and features it provides.