I just heard about a neat new project: rust-antlr. Basically, it’s an ANTLR grammar for Rust.

Unfortunately, if you’re not a compiler nerd, you may not know what that means.

At the highest level of detail, implementations of a language’s grammar are useful even outside of the compiler itself. For example, syntax highlighting tools, static analysis tools, and alternate language implementations are all good usages of a grammar that’s separate from the official language implementation. So, this project should help out anyone wanting to do something along those lines.

More specifically, ANTLR is a tool for writing grammars. You can write an ANTLR grammar, then have it generate a bunch of code that you can compile into a project, or use standalone as a grammar checker.

Anyway, as the README shows, it’s pretty easy to get started:

1. install antlr 4 jar, put it in your classpath
2. run make
3. try java org.antlr.v4.runtime.misc.TestRig Rust tts -tree < foo.rs

That’s it! I’m excited to see some tooling pop up around Rust, and hopefully this will enable even more neat tools to be built.


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