Crate eyeball

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Add observability to your Rust types!

This crate implements a basic form of the Observer pattern for Rust. It provides unique::Observable<T> as a type that semi-transparently wraps an inner value T and broadcasts changes to any associated Subscriber<T>s. Subscribers can currently only be polled for updates using async / .await, but this may change in the future.

There is also shared::Observable<T> as another variation which implements Clone but not Deref. It is more ergonomic and efficient than putting a unique::Observable inside of Arc<RwLock<_>> for updating the value from multiple places in the code.

Here is a quick walk-through:

use eyeball::unique::Observable;

let mut observable = Observable::new("A".to_owned());
// Observable has no methods of its own, as those could conflict
// with methods of the inner type, which it `Deref`erences to.
let mut subscriber1 = Observable::subscribe(&observable);
let mut subscriber2 = Observable::subscribe(&observable);

// You can get the current value from a subscriber without waiting
// for updates.
assert_eq!(subscriber1.get(), "A");

Observable::set(&mut observable, "B".to_owned());
// `.next().await` will wait for the next update, then return the
// new value.
assert_eq!(, Some("B".to_owned()));

// If multiple updates have happened without the subscriber being
// polled, the next poll will skip all but the latest.
Observable::set(&mut observable, "C".to_owned());
assert_eq!(, Some("C".to_owned()));
assert_eq!(, Some("C".to_owned()));

// You can even obtain the value without cloning the value, by
// using `.read()` (no waiting) or `.next_ref().await` (waits for
// the next update).
// If you restrict yourself to these methods, you can even use
// `Observable` with inner types that don't implement the `Clone`
// trait.
// However, note that while a read guard returned by `.read()` or
// `.next_ref().await` is alive, updating the observable is
// blocked.
Observable::set(&mut observable, "D".to_owned());
    let guard = subscriber1.next_ref().await.unwrap();
    assert_eq!(*guard, "D");

// The latest value is kept alive by subscribers when the
// `Observable` is dropped.
assert_eq!(subscriber1.get(), "D");
assert_eq!(*, "D");

Cargo features:

  • tracing: Emit tracing events when updates are sent out


  • This module defines a shared Observable type that is clonable, requires only & access to update its inner value but doesn’t dereference to the inner value.
  • Details of observable Subscribers.
  • This module defines a unique Observable type that requires &mut access to update its inner value but can be dereferenced (immutably).