error handling – Parsing a u8 separated vector of FromStr from a BufRead

I need to read a vector of e.g. integers from a stream, usually from stdin but sometimes also from a file. The input is always less than a megabyte, and is sometimes separated by commas and sometimes by newlines.

I’m calling the code directly from my main function, so I’m more concerned with returning a human readable error rather than something that can be caught and recovered from programmatically, hence I’m using String as the error type.

pub fn parse_vector<T: BufRead, S: FromStr>(buf: T, sep: u8) -> Result<Vec<S>, String> {
        .filter_map(|(i, entry)| {
            let entry_nr = i + 1;

            let entry = match {
                Err(e) => return Err(format!("Cannot read entry {}, {}.", entry_nr, e)).into(),
                Ok(Err(e)) => return Err(format!("Cannot read entry {}, {}.", entry_nr, e)).into(),
                Ok(Ok(v)) => v,

            let trimmed = entry.trim();
            if trimmed.is_empty() {
            } else {
                        .map_err(|_| format!("Cannot parse entry {}: '{}'", entry_nr, entry)),

The above code works as far as I can tell, but I’m wondering if there’s a nicer way to deal with the mess in the match expression. The functions from_utf8 and split return different error types, but both implement Display so maybe there’s some elegant way to eliminate some code duplication there that I don’t know about (I’m new to rust, coming from c++).

  • What are my options to make this code more readable?
  • Is it considered bad practice to return String as an error type?