Rust is a new and aspirational programming language for software systems. It features auto-management of storage with no garbage pickup or other runtime burdens.
In particular, Rust developers use default move semantics, have unique permissions for changing data, and consider reference lifespan. This ensures secure storage and eases cross-threaded coding by eliminating chasing of data.
A large programmer forum, StackOverflow, published its annual research on the Informational Technologies market. It ranked the coding languages that engineers like to use the most.
With Rust, you can write programs that are least susceptible to bugs and safety weaknesses due to powerful memory management functions. Furthermore, Rust is a transparent software tool, and an enthusiastic society of programmers maintains it as well as keeps adding more functionality and handy tools.
When a language combines several different approaches from other languages, it gets most of the advantages of each:
- Fast program speed;
- The ability to create OOP-style code: with classes and objects (but there are limitations);
- Stability in operation and compilation;
- The compiler itself offers options to correct errors in the program;
- Cross-platform compiler;
- Multi-threading help;
- Maintenance for “unsafe” blocks to work directly with storage;
- C and C++ code can be inserted.
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What’s Created in Rust?
Rust is often employed in those applications that require stability and robustness at heavy load and overall productivity.
In fact, Rust is ideal for building operating systems, web servers, system monitoring programs, and for creating scalable parts of the frontend and backend. For example, below are the most famous projects with Rust as the primary language:
- Dropbox – the server-side, which is in charge of the synchronization.
- Coursera – the majority of the front- and backend is developed in Rust.
- Mozilla: Firefox and sccache (distributed cache for the compiler).
- Servo – a browser engine with multithreading.
- Twitter – utilizes Rust to the high-loaded part of the service.
8 Things to Be Aware of Rust and Rust Experts
1. The Versatility of the Code
In spite of its positioning as a language for system engineering, Rust is appropriate for higher-level application tasks. The standard library of the programming interface already implements most types and functions that you may need in app design.
You can also easily link to and use external libraries. Rust’s type system and generalized programming allow for fairly high-level abstractions, even though the language does not explicitly support OOP.
If you’re used to each tool being designed for its own particular use case, try looking at Rust as a toolbox of tools of equal reliability and usability. Maybe that’s exactly what you’ve been missing.
2. Rust Is Good for a Variety of Tasks
The greatest popularity of the language is noted among developers who have taken the path of creating graphics and games. There are even developments to create a complete operating system, but they are still under development.
In the short term, there is the possibility of writing client programs and web servers. All of these tasks are quite up to Rust.
3. Too Active Development
The main, perhaps the only, disadvantage is its too active development. As new versions are released, the syntax changes somewhat, and from time to time it becomes necessary to change the logic of behavior and development services to adjust to new features. The situation will continue for some time until Rust-1.0 is released.
4. Rust Is Easy and Safe
Rust’s strict static type system and its attempt to perform as many checks as possible at compile time make it fairly easy and safe to refactor and modify code.
If the program builds after changes, it means that only logical bugs remain, not related to the functionality that the compiler was tasked to check.
Combined with the ease of adding unit tests to check the logic, this leads to a serious guarantee of program reliability and increases the programmer’s confidence that his code works correctly after changes have been made.
5. Rust Is Reliable
Although the syntax is similar to C, the main feature of Rust programs the developers took from Haskell sounds like this: If a Rust program is compiled and does not crash on startup, it will run until you stop it.
This means that Rust programs are almost as reliable as Haskell programs. Almost, because if the Rust programmer uses an “unsafe” unsafe block that gives him direct access to memory, in theory, this can sometimes lead to crashes.
But even with such blocks Rust tries to handle itself and crashes only in hopeless cases.
6. Use of Rust by Developers in the Real World
Apart from the language developer Mozilla, which uses Rust for its Servo browser engine and most Firefox-related projects, quite a few companies use it in their projects.
Amazon Web Services’ Firecracker is written entirely in Rust, and popular IT companies Discord, npm, Cloudflare, Figma, and others successfully develop software in it.
Rust is becoming increasingly common with each passing day. Corporations including Microsoft and Amazon have bet on it. In addition, Rust is listed as a source language for the Linux kernel development, and Google launched its Fuchsia operating system, which is largely created in Rust.
7. A Compiled Language
A compiled code means that the finished program is a separate file that can be run on any computer with the desired operating system. You do not need to install a development environment and compiler to run it, it is enough that the compiled version fits your computer.
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8. Convenient Build and Dependency Management Tools
It’s clearly not advertised, but many people have noticed that Rust has one of the best build and dependency management systems available today. If you’ve ever programmed in C or C++, and have been painlessly using external libraries, then using Rust with its Cargo toolbox and dependency manager is a good choice for your new projects.
In addition to loading and managing dependencies, building and running your applications, running tests, and generating documentation for you, Cargo can also be extended with plugins for other useful features.
For example, there are extensions that allow Cargo to identify your project’s obsolete dependencies, perform static source code analysis, build and redeploy client parts of web applications, and much more.
Whether you work with Rust source code or not, the development and proliferation of this tool for writing applications continue. Rust will become an increasingly popular language, and it is possible that with proper Rust web development and refinement it will be able to surpass today’s main competitors.