Is Rust an Open Source language?


#1

I am not asking about the compilers, I am asking if the language Rust is Open Source?


#2

Sure, Rust is community-based.


#3

What is the “source” of a language?


#4

Everything is MIT/Apache2 licensed, including the Reference, which is about as close to a definition of the language as you can get.


#5

Rust is written in Rust itself, so … :slight_smile:


#6

So computer languages can’t be open source, right?


#7

Are you referring to the compiler?


#8

The compiler and the specification are both open source.


#9

What about the language itself?


#10

What does mean for a language to be “open source”?
If you can know the syntax and semantic in a “free” way (the reference), the language itself is free software, because you can write a free software compiler/interpreter that can understand that syntax and semantic and produce the right output.
I think almost all the computer languages known are “open source”


#11

Yes. The specification is public, the reference compiler is open-source, and changes to the language come from an open community process.

(while the “open-source” definition doesn’t apply to languages per se, the opposite of the term — proprietary — does. Rust is not proprietary at all.)


#12

Perhaps it’s clearer to ask in “Can I do —” form, whether or not you really want to do that.

  • “The compiler is open source” means that you can use, read, derive and redistribute the compiler.
  • “The reference manual is open source” means that you can read, derive and redistribute the reference manual.
  • “Rust is community-based” means that you can propose a change to the Rust language and there is a fair amount of possibility that your proposal is accepted if it is rational enough.