Rust Future ecosystem

The Rust future ecosystem is quite complex and in this post I hope to explore and shed light on the different pieces.

Note: the Futures ecosystem is still evolving and will likely change as the Rust community agrees on best practices. It is therefore best to consider this post as a snapshot in time.

Why I think the ecosystem is so complicated:

Different future crates


futures-rs is a project before there were futures in Rust. The goal of the project was to experiment with futures before officially supporting it in the Rust standard library. The project was a success and from it came the Future trait. The trait is what allowed the rust team to then build an deliver the async feature that the community very much wanted for the 2018 edition.

However, there is still so much more functionality that is part of the futures-rs project and alot is already being used. The futures crate is the entire collection of all functionality exposed by futures-rs while the futures-* is the project broken into smaller modular pieces.

So what does futures-rs offer? Stream, Channels, IO, task, and helpers to make it more convenient to work with futures!

std future

The standard future crate (which is part of the Rust standard library) offers the Future trait. This trait is what allows the Rust community to write interopable code.

task module

While not actually a future, this module contains some core concepts necessary for writing asynchronous programs.

The most important items that I think the task module offers are Poll, Waker and Context. These items are necessary for writing custom Futures logic.