Rust, the programming language hatched at Mozilla, has found a major fan in Amazon Web Services (AWS).
AWS has announced its intention to hire more Rust developers in coming months as part of its plan to support the open-source community behind the young language, which has become popular for systems programming.
Open-source Rust only reached version 1.0 five years ago. It was created with a prime goal of eradicating memory-related security bugs in Firefox’s Gecko rendering engine. Many of these security issues were because the engine was written in C++, which Mozilla described as having “an unsafe memory model”.
Microsoft is also a big fan of Rust has been exploring its use in search of a way of reducing memory-related vulnerabilities in Windows components written in C and C++. But while Rust is well liked, not many developers are familiar with it, Stack Overflow found in its 2020 survey of 65,000 developers.
AWS, last year became a sponsor of Rust, and has written several products in Rust. One of the latest is Bottlerocket, a Linux-based container operating system.
Beyond providing sponsorship, the cloud company AWS is using its hiring power to support the language.
It recently started hiring contributors to Rust and Tokio, a runtime for writing applications in Rust for all kinds of devices. AWS says it is building a Rust and Tokio team to support its long-term plans.
“Given our dependence on Rust, we need deep in-house Rust expertise, just as we have with Java and other foundational technologies,” said Matt Asay, an open-source exec at AWS.
Shane Miller, a senior software engineering manager at AWS, is tasked with hiring Rust engineers. She explains the importance of Rust to AWS.
“Rust is a critical component of our long-term strategy, and we’re investing to deliver Rust engineering at Amazon scale. That includes developer tools, infrastructure components, interoperability, and verification,” Miller says.
There are about 120 Rust-related vacancies spanning software development, hardware development, support engineering, and systems and security engineer.
Amazon Lab126, the R&D unit behind the Amazon Echo and Kindle devices, has several vacancies for engineers who know Rust along with C, C++ and Java. AWS is also looking for engineers for Lambda, its serverless compute service, as well as its Ring home security service, and more.
The hiring effort is both good for AWS and for the Rust community because it will encourage more people to learn the language and then contribute, notes Marc Brooker, a senior principal engineer at AWS.
“Hiring engineers to work directly on Rust allows us to improve it in ways that matter to us and to our customers, and help grow the overall Rust community,” said Brooker.
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