Async overloading

Impact

  • By default, function definitions can be compiled into either sync or async mode
  • Able to overload a function with two variants, one for sync and one for async

Design notes

This is a highly speculative deliverable. However, it would be great if one were able to write code that is neither sync nor sync, but potentially either. Further, one should be able to provide specialized variants that perform the same task but in slightly different ways; this would be particularly useful for primitives like TCP streams.

Monomorphize

The way to think of this is that every function has an implicit generic parameter indicating its scheduler mode. When one writes fn foo(), that is like creating a generic impl:


#![allow(unused)]
fn main() {
impl<SM> Fn<(), SM> for Foo 
where 
    SM: SchedulerMode,
{
    ...
}
}

When one writes async fn or sync fn, those are like providing specific impls:


#![allow(unused)]
fn main() {
impl Fn<(), AsyncSchedulerMode> for Foo {
    ...
}

impl Fn<(), SchedulerMode> for Foo {
    ...
}
}

Further, by default, when you call a function, you invoke it in the same scheduler mode as the caller.

Implications for elsewhere

  • If we had this feature, then having distinct modules like use std::io and use std::async_io would not be necessary.
  • Further, we would want to design our traits and so forth to have a "common subset" of functions that differ only in the presence or absence of the keyword async.