created_at2017-01-22 21:07:35.786682
updated_at2017-02-04 04:27:04.809092
descriptionCompiler for the brain programming language. Compiles brain into optimized brainfuck code. Also includes a brainfuck interpreter.
Sunjay Varma (sunjay)




brain is a high level programming language that compiles into brainfuck. It is implemented using the Rust programming language.

brainfuck is an esoteric programming language with 8 very simple instructions. Unfortunately, brainfuck code is quite difficult to understand and write. brain makes it easier to write brainfuck programs by allowing you to write in a more familiar syntax. The compiler is designed to optimize the generated brainfuck code as much as possible.

Optimization Goals

  1. Generate small brainfuck files (use as few instructions as possible)
  2. Generate memory efficient code (use as few brainfuck cells as possible)

As the project reaches 1.0.0, these goals will become more expressed in the compiled output of the program.

brain syntax

For full examples, please see the examples/ directory. Some examples aren't fully implemented yet in the compiler.

The following examples are all working syntax:

cat program (examples/cat.brn)

// cat program
// while condition can be an `in` statement, or valid expression of size 1 byte
// Continues so long as the given byte is not zero
while in ch[1] {
    out ch;

Compile this with brain examples/cat.brn.

This compiles to the following brainfuck:


Run this with brainfuck < someinputfile.txt.

Reading Input (examples/input.brn)

// input requires explicit sizing
// always reads exactly this many characters or panics if EOF is reached before then
// if this many characters aren't available yet, it waits for you to send that many
in b[5];
out "b = " b "\n";

c[1] = "c";
in c;
out "c = " c "\n";

// You can reuse allocated space again
in b;
out "b = " b "\n";

// Error because we don't support dynamic length strings
//in input[];

// Error because you can't redeclare an existing name
//in b[5];

// Error because you aren't requesting any characters
//in zero[0];

This compiles into the following brainfuck:



For people just looking to use brain, the easiest way to get brain right now is to first install the Cargo package manager for the Rust programming language.

Then in your terminal run:

cargo install brain

If you are upgrading from a previous version, run:

cargo install brain --force


For anyone just looking to compile with the compiler:

  1. Follow the installation instructions above
  2. Run brain yourfile.brn to compile your brain code
  3. Run brainfuck to run a brainfuck interpreter which will run your generated brainfuck code

You can also specify an output filename. Run brain --help for more information.

For anyone looking to build the source code:

This project contains both the brain compiler and a basic brainfuck interpreter.

Make sure you have rust and cargo (comes with rust) installed.

brain compiler

To compile a brain (.brn) file into brainfuck (.bf)

cargo run --bin brain -- filename.brn

where filename.brn is the brain program you want to compile

Use --help to see further options and additional information

cargo run --bin brain -- --help

If the brain compiler seems to be taking too long or "hanging", try running cargo build first to see if the rust compiler is just taking too long for some reason.

brainfuck interpreter

The brain compiler only officially targets this brainfuck interpreter. You may experience varying results with other brainfuck interpreters/compilers. There really isn't a definitive spec on how brainfuck should behave so it is just easier to have a static compilation target that won't vary in how it behaves.

To run brainfuck programs:

cargo run --bin brainfuck -- filename

where filename is the brainfuck program you want to run


There are various brain examples in the examples/ directory which you can compile into brainfuck using the usage instructions above.

Commit count: 328

cargo fmt