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Can someone help me out here with a TL;DR? This is my first exposure ever to any technical aspect of Go, and this discussion makes it sound from this discussion like it doesn't use any tag bits in its pointers, but has its garbage collector run heuristics on the data it examines to see whether it "looks like text" to decide whether to collect it? I know that can't possibly be correct.

It's much simpler than that, it's called a conservative collector, It looks at every bit of data, at just pretends it is a pointer, if anything points to a valid allocated address, that address is retained. Otherwise, just like every collection when there are no references, the object is collected.

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