[Mesa-dev] Rust drivers in Mesa

Alexander von Gluck IV kallisti5 at unixzen.com
Fri Oct 16 00:04:44 UTC 2020

October 1, 2020 8:36 PM, "Alyssa Rosenzweig" <alyssa.rosenzweig at collabora.com> wrote:
> Hi all,
> Recently I've been thinking about the potential for the Rust programming
> language in Mesa. Rust bills itself a safe system programming language
> with comparable performance to C [0], which is a naturally fit for
> graphics driver development.
> Mesa today is written primarily in C, a notoriously low-level language,
> with some components in C++. To handle the impedance mismatch, we've
> built up a number of abstractions in-tree, including multiple ad hoc
> code generators (GenXML, NIR algebraic passes, Bifrost disassembler). A
> higher level language can help avoid the web of metaprogramming and
> effect code that is simpler and easier to reason about. Similarly, a
> better type system can aid static analysis.

Drive by comment; When I was working on porting Mesa/Gallium Softpipe
over to Haiku (several years ago now), there was some *really* hairy
C downcasting/upcasting in some critical places which made it *extremely*
difficult to decode what was going on without pulling out pen and paper.

Excited to potentially see some Rust in Mesa.
Even Haiku has a Rust port ;-)

 -- Alex

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