Have You Heard of Rust Programming?

If not, you will soon. Designed by Graydon Hoare, Rust is a general-purpose compiled programming language that emphasis safe, concurrent coding.

The idea for creating such a language came in the late 2000s when Mozilla employee Graydon Hoare was working on a personal project. After revealing his work to Mozilla, the folks at Mozilla jumped on board, sponsoring the Rust project in 2009. Soon after, Rust’s existing compiler, which was written in OCaml, was transitioned to using a self-hosting compiler written in the actual Rust language. This compiler, rightfully known as rustc, has become a characteristic component of the language.

While the roots of Rust date back to the late 2000s, the first stable public release wasn’t made until May 15, 2015. It’s an open community project, meaning anyone can chip in to support the language. Rust has since been used in a variety of different projects, including Dropbox’s Magic Pocket, Mozilla’s Servo parallel rendering engine, OpenDNS and the microkernal operating system Redox OS. It was even ranked the #1 Most Loved Programming Language of 2016 by the Stack Overflow Developer Survey.

The Mechanics Behind Rust

Rust was designed with a focus on offering a highly concurrent, safe language with minimal errors and vulnerabilities. It has achieved this with specific control of memory layout and an emphasis on concurrency.

Many seasoned programmers compare Rust to C++, as both languages feature very similar syntax, complete with curly brackets, keyword-based control flow (e.g. if, else, while, for, etc.). With that said, however, it’s important to note that Rust does not support all C and C++ keywords. Rust also uses its own keywords which are not found in C or C++, such as match and switch.

Rust developers describe the language as being a “…programming language that runs blazingly fast, prevents segfaults, and guarantees thread safety.” That definition sums up the language nicely: Rust is fast, efficient, and designed in a manner that minimizes the risk of errors.

Rust: ‘Hello World’

Here’s an example of how to create a hello world messaging using the Rust language.

fn main() {
println!("hello, world");
}

Rust Programming Features

  • Considered “memory safe,” meaning it’s designed in a manner to reduce the frequency of bugs and security vulnerabilities associated with buffer overflows, dangling pointers and other random-access memory (RAM) processes.
  • Null pointers are prohibited.
  • Move semantics.
  • Highly efficient C bindings.
  • Generics based on traits.
  • Object system use traits and structured types.
  • Uses pointer lifetimes and freezing to prevent many common errors found in C++.
  • Minimal runtime.

You can download the Rust package by visiting the language’s official website at https://www.rust-lang.org/downloads.html.

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