Who would have thought that when Rust was released in 2010, it would take the programming world by storm? Well, it did, and there’s hard proof. According to Stack Overflow’s Developer Survey, Rust has been the most beloved programming language in the world consecutively from 2016 to 2021. There are plenty of reasons why Rust has been so successful in a relatively short period. So, let’s dive a little deeper into its popularity.
What is Rust?
Designed by Graydon Hoare, Rust is a jack-of-all-trades programming language, widely known for tackling high-performance, safety, parallelism, and concurrency brilliantly. While many of the established languages are either fast, safe, and convenient to work with, Rust combines all three into one.
It is also statically-typed, like C and C++, providing features like zero-cost abstractions, generics, and garbage collection with fewer limitations than most of the languages out there. When you take into consideration all of these factors, it makes little sense to not use Rust for systems programming.
Advantages of Rust, It’s fast and secure
Often with low-level programming languages, there is a compromise. You can get good safety and a certain ease of writing but without the high performance. Rust has been optimally designed for all three.
It scans through the whole code during the compilation so that there are no bugs and errors. Its garbage collection feature guarantees memory safety as it does so automatically. On top of that, the threads in Rust leave little to no data traces.
Rust’s performance is comparable to C, which is regarded as one of the fastest languages in the world today. This is due to the fact that it is a compiled language that writes to machine code. Once compiled, there is minimal runtime associated with Rust code.
- Zero-cost abstractions
Adding abstractions to your code is a necessary part of any project, especially if the project is a big and complex one. They make customising and managing the code easier, along with adding new features. In many languages or libraries, these abstractions, including those you do not use come at a cost.
Rust leaves no overhead memory, thus making zero-cost abstractions possible at the runtime. This is one of Rust’s stand-out features. Borrowing, ownership, traits, generics, iterators in the language are all based on zero-cost.
- Easier, more efficient concurrency
Concurrency is one of the big challenges programming languages face in modern times. The technology is growing more powerful with multi-cores being added to systems, and it seems like many languages simply aren’t equipped to handle the task.
Rust, on the other hand, embraces multi-cores using the a sync/await and in-built multiple threading support. It prevents data races at the compilation stage, making synchronisation a much more hassle-free process.
- Large, sustainable ecosystem
As good of a language as Rust is, the embellishments in Rust really put the cherry on top. It has salient in-built features like rust up for installing and managing toolchains and cargo for dependencies, documentation, and tests. Rust libraries can be easily accessed on crates.io.
The language is well maintained and has a big, bountiful community with a presence everywhere a developer can hope for.
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