Memory and heap in rust on construction paper

fun and games with RUST and memory! oh my!

Learning RUST memory the analog way at women and non-binary hack night!
a little bit of fun to spice things up!

We embarked on our epic analog Learning Rust journey at SudoRoom hackerspace, this time during the women & nonbinary hack night. Last week’s session was really great to kick things off, and the format continues — no slides, no presentation on a computer monitor, just people talking face to face.

To shake things up and keep things fun, I personally only brought out my tablet computer for reference since you can do basic exercises in the browser using the rust playground at

setting up the whiteboard

We spent a lot of time talking about the memory and the heap, which can be super confusing sometimes. For now we were doing simple examples using arrays and vector types in RUST.

I should write up a blog post about it, but after a while just doing stuff on a whiteboard got tired. I ran down to the multimedia room where people were sewing, and wondered how hard it would be to make stuffed animals to represent the heap and the stack in a computer, but that was too ambitious for just one evening. They gave my some construction paper, wished me well, and back I was up the stairs!

Going Beyond the Whiteboard

Playing with pieces of papers, just like writing on a chalkboard, is even more freeing than a whiteboard. It also takes a lot of the intimidation out of learning basic concepts like memory such as the heap and the stack! Here we made an array living on the stack, fixed size and full of little signed integer 32 bit types.

Working with Vectors is a little trickier. I’m still not sure if I depicted the String types properly in the heap. Would the string be in a box, with each character in its own slot? I’m still not sure and still learning!

Learning is sure fun when it’s tactile!

Friendship is magic!
Memory and heap in rust on construction paper

I don’t want you to think that I haven’t spent the weekend in the Rust compiler, which s super strict and a big part of the language. We had a group event last week during the Tuesday night meetup, and gave pep cheers and talks to folks using the learning sets! So it’s important to type it into code.

What is Learning Anyway?

But do you really know something well unless you can explain it? and then whiteboard it without looking at the documentation? And then finally make paper cutout dolls? Who knows? What is knowing and learning something anyway?

Join us next episode for another episode of learning to learn with Rust and SudoRoom!