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A Complete Overview of Rust Programming Language

Arpatech Mar 24, 2021
Rust Programming Language

Rust programing language, since its launch more than a decade ago, has managed to carve a niche for itself across a wide community of developers, attaining the top slot among the most sought-after programming languages.

The key to Rust’s success: its ability to have control over low-level details, as it can be used to craft game engines, websites, tools, file and operating systems, and more. Simply put, the language, being very simple, swift, and light, bears considerable resemblance to C++, and is more focused performance and security. Rust was created by Graydon Hoare for Mozilla.

Concepts of Rust

Ownership

Ownership is Rust’s most amazing feature, and it allows the language to make memory safety guarantees. In Rust, memory is managed through a structure of ownership with a set of guidelines that the compiler reviews at compile time. Owned data is only automatically removed when the retained variable no longer holds the data. This can occur when the owner variable goes out of scope and is wrecked; and the owner variable is set to another value, which makes the real data inaccessible.

Borrowing

As the name suggests, borrowing allows another variable to momentarily borrow the data in your variable and gives it back when it’s done. Several resources are too costly in terms of time or memory be copied for every reassignment. In these situations, the language offers the option to borrow.

Lifetimes

The Rust compiler uses lifetimes to keep track of the length of validity of references. The borrow checker is primarily responsible for checking references. In many situations, the borrow checker can deduce the precise lifetimes and handle everything on its own. But it often needs your help to appreciate it. If Lifetime does not do its work properly, several invalid references can be seen during runtime.

Why Use Rust?

There are multiple reasons why top developers make the most of Rust programming language, some of which are as follows.

Performance

Rust is super-fast and memory-efficient: with no runtime or garbage collector, the language can run performance-critical amenities, run on embedded devices, and easily gel in with other languages.

Reliability

Rust’s rich type system and ownership model ensure memory-safety and thread-safety, allowing you to remove several classes of viruses at compile-time.

Productivity

Rust has amazing documentation, a welcoming compiler with beneficial error messages, and first-rate tooling — an integrated package manager and build tool, smart multi-editor support with auto-completion and type inspections, an auto-formatter, and more.

Rust can build powerful web apps

Rust is unquestionably the best choice for developing web apps that offer performance that wouldn’t have been possible using JavaScript, the long-lasting scripting language of the web. Besides, Rust can be compiled into Web Assembly, a promising new domain to bring near-native application performance to the web. In fact, Rust has become the go-to language for writing code that compiles to Web Assembly. The language is also likely to soon rival well-known web-development languages for its unique features.

Rust is great for building distributed online services

For networked services, Rust’s trifling footmark and capacity to ensure memory safety across multiple threads make it a superb choice for services that scale across distributed systems online. Drawing data from different online services should also shortly be easier, with Rust due to enforce support for the async/await commands, which will make it much easier to write asynchronous code that doesn’t hang while waiting for data to be delivered.

Stack Overflow

Rust has been Stack Overflow’s most loved language for four consecutive years; no wonder, many who began working on it fell in love with it. Nevertheless, the nearly 97% of survey respondents who haven’t used the language may question its credibility. But these skeptics will be pleasantly surprised to learn that Rust enjoys a leading edge over other languages with just a handful of minor demerits.

 

Why you should learn Rust

Rust is a contemporary programming language that is essentially aimed at solving a slew of issues which C/C++ programmers generally face. Here are a couple of reasons why you should learn Rust.

The Package Manager

Rust is one of the few languages to come with a built-in package manager called Cargo. Compared to other package manager, working with Cargo is an exciting experience. Reason?  It uses the TOML syntax, which is quite expressive and user-friendly.

Package Manager

Plus, it obviates the need for setting up any build scripts. Cargo automatically deals with compiling and linking binaries for your libraries and program. No configuration is required for production or development and there’s no need to worry about targeting specific platforms. It simply works. Also, you can still have them even if there’s no need to build scripts. Custom build scripts are regularly used when linking against C/C++ libraries, and take into account as much customization as needed.

The Compiler

While the Rust compiler is not essentially the swiftest one, it is certainly still very well designed and has a number of features that many other compilers lack. Initially, it features great color coding which makes the productivity very easy to read.

Rust compiler

The compiler is very thorough and provides considerable context to the source of your error. The compiler not only tells you about the error and where to find it, but it also gives the code straight in the terminal. It underlines the specific parts of a line that are erroneous. There are also exhaustive clarifications of why your code is wrong, and most remarkably, it can even tell you how to fix it. Note that in the above image, the compiler asks to add the mut keyword in front of window. If the compiler is unable to provide a direct fix for your code, it will still provide a command to give a more thorough clarification — typically in the form of Rust –explain {error_code}.

Conclusion

Over the last few years, Rust has seen a remarkable rise and we are finally beginning to see it intrude into large organizations and significant projects. Most conspicuously, WASM has first-class support for Rust. The language has also been selected as the most treasured language for two years in succession.

Microsoft behemoth Microsoft has also been very vociferous about their embracing of Rust.

Approximately, 70% of the security issues that the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) allocates a CVE to are memory safety issues. By and large, despite being a relatively new language, Rust is in a very good position and is on track to become the number one programming language of the world.

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