I’ve really enjoyed writing Rust, lately. I posted yesterday about what I’m doing with it. In the meantime here are some immediate reactions to writing Rust:

🔗 Documentation

The documentation is pretty good. It could be better, like if every single method had an example included, but it could be a lot worse. And the fact that a lot (though not all for some reason) of the documentation has links to the related source is really handy.

🔗 Language Itself

The languages feels good. This is really hard to express, but the main thing is that type inference makes a lot of the type defintions feel less burdensome than, for example, Java and friends. It also feels stratospherically high level, with closures, object orientation, destructuring, handy methods on basic types like strings, and much more. Yet it’s actually pretty low level.

🔗 Community

The community is awesome! I have never had as many friendly and willing people help me as a total noob before. Maybe it’s because Rust has a code of conduct or maybe it’s because Mozilla are nice people. I appreciate that there are people who actually know what is up answering questions at all hours of the night; they also generally assume competence. While assuming competence may make the total amount of questions asked greater, it makes the entire exchange much mroe pleasant. More of this please!

🔗 Error Messages

The error messages are very good. For example, check this out:

$ rustc 84:43 error: unresolved name `n`. Did you mean `v`? [E0425]             Ok(v) => { *content_length = n },
                                                     ^ 84:43 help: run `rustc --explain E0425` to see a detailed explanation
error: aborting due to previous error

They all give some context like that, and then have an error code (the --explain thing) that lets you get a more complete description of what you did and how you can fix it. Sometimes the errors can be pretty inscrutable for a new user though:

$ rustc 219:7 error: the trait `core::ops::FnOnce<()>` is not implemented for the type `()` [E0277]     let mut c_stdin = f.stdin.unwrap_or_else({         warn!("Failed to get child's STDIN");         early_exit("500 Internal Server Error");     }); 219:7 help: run `rustc --explain E0277` to see a detailed explanation
error: aborting due to previous error

🔗 Searchability

Searching for examples of stuff online is surprisingly hard. I don’t know if that’s because Rust is a popular video game or if it’s just because the language is fairly new. I hope to help remedy this in general.

🔗 Etc

There is certainly more, like the included package management system or other interesting language features. I may post more about those later, but the above is stuff that I ran into during my week long foray into Rust. Hope this helps!

Posted Tue, Feb 9, 2016

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