On the last 20 years, we have lived an incredible growth in computer science. Storage spaces have been increased dramatically, RAM has suffered a substantial growth, and CPU's are... well... simply faster. Have they grown as much as storage and RAM memory? Not really, CPU industry has reached a limit in the speed that their CPU's can deliver, mainly because they have become so fast that they cannot get enough power to work while they dissipate enough heat. The CPU manufacturers are now shipping more cores on each computer. This situation crashes against the background of many systems programming languages that weren't designed for multi-processor CPUs or large distributed systems that act as a unique machine. In Google, they realized that this was becoming more than an issue while they were struggling to develop distributed applications in languages like Java or C++ that weren't designed with concurrency in mind.
At the same time, our programs were bigger, more complex, more difficult to maintain and with a lot of room for bad practices. While our computers had more cores and were faster, we were not faster when developing our code neither our distributed applications. This was Go's target.
Go design started in 2007 by three Googlers in the research of a programming language that could solve common issues in large scale distributed systems like the ones you can find at Google. The creators were:
Rob Pike: Plan 9 and Inferno OS.
Ken Thompson: Worked at Bell labs and the Unix team. It has been involved in designing of the Plan 9 operating system as well as the definition of the UTF-8 encoding.
In 2008, the compiler was done and the team got the help of Russ Cox and Ian Lance Taylor. The team started their journey to open source the project in 2009 and in March 2012 they reached a version 1.0 after more than fifty releases.