Llogiq on stuff

How to Be a Rustacean

You wanted to join the Rust Evangelism Strike Force (usually abbreviated as R.E.S.F.) since its inception, but this meant becoming a Rustacean first. So you joined the Rust community. They gave you a borrow checker and a copy of the Code of Conduct.

(As an aside, the Code of Conduct really implements Copy. Feel free to use this for any project or event you may have.)

The borrow checker is an automaton that tells you ‘Sorry, Dave, I can’t let you do that’ whenever you try to introduce fishy aliasing. You gave up trying to tell it that your name isn’t Dave once you learned that this is a movie reference. You tried to change the movie to get another name, just to find the reference is immutable (which is, after all, the default in Rust).

You’ve skimmed the Code of Conduct and decided it’s describing basic decency, so since you consider yourself to be decent, you mostly ignore it. Once someone from the moderation team contacted you about something where you were a bit blunt, so you apologized and it was all good.

You try a number of editors and/or IDEs. They’re all more or less good (If you are on Windows, you’ll likely use VS Code, on Linux you probably switch between VS Code and (neo)vim, I’ve seen MacOS users on Atom and vim, but have no idea what you folks use).

You write a bit of code, start one or two projects, perhaps join a project and find an awesome mentor (they all are). Maybe you even contribute to the compiler and have your name end up on the thanks page.

You discuss on rust-users or /r/rust and before you know you’re talking to your colleagues how awesome everything is in Rust. Before you realize it, you’ve become a R.E.S.F. member!


That said, you’ve also started to notice the rough edges the language still has. Ah, well, every programming language has its warts, you rationalize away. This doesn’t hinder your enthusiasm much, but makes you alert to not paper over any shortcomings in online discussion, to keep the aura of evenhandedness. Also the downsides are minuscule, compared to the awesomeness that is freedom from memory errors and data races, without paying for a runtime.

No wonder Rust is StackOverflow’s most beloved programming language for the second year in a row.

In any event, the next version that will bring even more awesomeness is less than six weeks away. They’re coming in like clockwork. There’s something to be said for the rolling release model. Also what you see on nightly (which you installed via rustup to run rust-clippy) is very encouraging (Yay, Generators!). Many current problems will be solved in less than twelve weeks – certainly worth the wait.

If there are meetups in your area, you’ve met other Rustaceans there already, or perhaps went to one of the numerous Rust conferences. You wield Segfault Steve memes on twitter. You debate C apologists (how many CVEs do they need to see?) and battle the occasional troll. Now if only your employer would let you use Rust. Many companies already do, but they’re early adopters, as of yet.

Anyway, it’s only a matter of time. We will persist.