Chatgpt and Programming

Soldato
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Got a private Copilot service now at work and I'm using it more and more, odds and sods like writing regex and reminding myself of some obscure syntax I've not used in a while.

So much better than just searching. I believe we're getting models trained on our engines at some point which will be ace for doing boilerplate.
 
Caporegime
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Got a private Copilot service now at work and I'm using it more and more, odds and sods like writing regex and reminding myself of some obscure syntax I've not used in a while.

So much better than just searching. I believe we're getting models trained on our engines at some point which will be ace for doing boilerplate.

As you work in game development, how much do you think AI is going to change the gaming landscape in the next few years?
 
Soldato
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As you work in game development, how much do you think AI is going to change the gaming landscape in the next few years?
Can't say too much. In the AAA space we're not going to be replacing our artists and creatives, generative AI is likely to be used to streamline workflows and improve productivity. It's already a useful tool for helping with code and in wide use already.

The less-than-premium market, where studios punch out titles quickly, will be under immense pressure to use AI. Well see offerings soon that'll do a passable implementation of "make me a futuristic class-based team competitive shooter in a steam punk style" that'll spit out a playable game. It'll be decent enough to stick on a eStore and make a few quid off. There'll be an explosion of titles like this hitting Steam, like on mobile. They'll be 'good enough' for a lot of people.

It's pretty much the same impact AI will have on any industry. At the premium end it's just a tool to help. The 'build em quick, stack em high and sell em cheap' market will be ruled by the most efficient AI.
 
Soldato
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I was sceptical at first, but after using ChatGPT and Copilot nearly every day for over a year now, I think they're great and have definitely helped my productivity.

I use Copilot the most, with % use being:
  • 80% - 'intellisense on steroids'
    it's 50/50 if it suggests exactly (or near enough) what I was in the process of writing, but even when it's not right, I can usually take it and amend as required quicker than just writing it from scratch
  • 5% - "can I improve my function/readme/documentation/etc."
    It's great for streamlining functions or improving for performance. It's also great for reviewing documentation from the POV of a junior dev
  • 5% - "generate dev comments for [selected code]"
    Sure, code should be self documenting, but when comments are necessary, it saves me writing them
  • 5% - "amend my function to ..."
    This is especially great with libraries as it saves me having to lookup documentation most of the time
  • 3% - "generate regex for ..."
    Because how many of us truly know, or even want to know, regex
  • 2% - "explain this [selected code]"
    This is particularly good for spaghetti code on old legacy projects
  • 1% - "write a function to/that/for ..."
    I've found that if it's anything even remotely complex, the amount of multiple detailed paragraphs I need to write for the prompt are not worth the time. I much prefer starting on my function(s) myself and let autosuggest connect the dots and do most of the legwork.

I use the ChatGPT API to auto generate my commit messages, which might not seem like that big a deal, but it's changed my life as a dev with ADHD.

Coming up with CSS classes? Function names? Variable names? **** easy for me. (.feature-list__item--featured, getFeaturedListItem(), let currentFeaturedListItem) lol
But writing a few sentences to summarise the work I've done, a summarisation I could easily spout out verbally? There goes at least 15-20 minutes and I still won't be happy with it.
Now all I have to do is click a button and then have a quick read over to make sure it's correct and includes everything. Boom! Done!
 
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Soldato
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I'm actually find at the moment I don't really think of ChatGPT until the problem is too hard for it to solve, and I know it. But I throw the problem at it anyway, if I have the time. Most of the time it throws back complete garbage that would never work. I mostly find it useful for syntax reminders (aka sorry Stackoverflow, you're not as useful anymore), and the occasional algorithm, or 'how do this thing work' reminder. It also can be useful to get out of a rut. Maybe it'll suggest something close, or something that'll give you an idea.
 
Soldato
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ChatGPT (well, the Microsoft Copilot version that's safe for corporate use) still for quite a lot of small things. Wrote my first ever powersshell script the other day with it to search a codebase for something.

Still waiting for Github Copilot, not gonna be hugely useful until it's trained on our internal engines, but I think it's being trialled at the mo.
 
Soldato
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I never thought I'd use such tools, but I find myself using it more and more. Its not just the fact that it writes the code for you its more the fact that instead of me trawling the internet to remember how to do something or for an answer to a question these tools can give me what I am looking for immediately.
 
Associate
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I use ChatGPT (GPT4) almost daily which has helped me with my 1st ever Unity project, it's been very useful. Sometimes (not very often) it needs help or doesn't spot something, but often that's because I haven't explained something properly etc. I'd say my project is two thirds complete now and it's taken me about 4 months, without ChatGPT it would have been twice as long.

To those who are using Co-Pilot, what are the advantages over just using web based ChatGPT (like I am)? I'm paying $24 per month for ChatGPT Plus. I know Co-Pilot isn't free and I could get it via Github. I'm doing software development just as a hobby (would love to do it professionally though), is there a case for me to use Co-Pilot?
 
Soldato
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I use ChatGPT (GPT4) almost daily which has helped me with my 1st ever Unity project, it's been very useful. Sometimes (not very often) it needs help or doesn't spot something, but often that's because I haven't explained something properly etc. I'd say my project is two thirds complete now and it's taken me about 4 months, without ChatGPT it would have been twice as long.

To those who are using Co-Pilot, what are the advantages over just using web based ChatGPT (like I am)? I'm paying $24 per month for ChatGPT Plus. I know Co-Pilot isn't free and I could get it via Github. I'm doing software development just as a hobby (would love to do it professionally though), is there a case for me to use Co-Pilot?
There are multiple Copilot products.

One is Microsoft Copilot, which is their licensed version of ChatGPT essentially, a LLM, which you use through a browser (or increasingly Windows 11)

Github Copilot is a different product, specifically for coding, integrated into VS, which does various things like smart autocomplete and bug highlighting.

I haven't used the latter yet as it's not approved for use yet.
 
Associate
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There are multiple Copilot products.

One is Microsoft Copilot, which is their licensed version of ChatGPT essentially, a LLM, which you use through a browser (or increasingly Windows 11)

Github Copilot is a different product, specifically for coding, integrated into VS, which does various things like smart autocomplete and bug highlighting.

I haven't used the latter yet as it's not approved for use yet.
Ah ok thx. I think I'll hang fire for a bit as I'm happy with GPT4 web browser version at the moment. Github Co-Pilot sounds like a turbo intellisense, I'll have to watch some YouTube videos on what it can do. I'm at the stage now with my project where it is very close to being what I wanted it to be, for an early version anyway. ChatGPT has really helped. Imo to get the best out of it a good level of coding understanding is required, it's more of a speed improvement for me, I could generate the code it gives me but it would take me much longer than the seconds it takes. I don't often do google searches nowadays to solve coding problems, I wonder how sites like stack exchange have or are going to be effected.
 
Soldato
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Ah ok thx. I think I'll hang fire for a bit as I'm happy with GPT4 web browser version at the moment. Github Co-Pilot sounds like a turbo intellisense, I'll have to watch some YouTube videos on what it can do. I'm at the stage now with my project where it is very close to being what I wanted it to be, for an early version anyway. ChatGPT has really helped. Imo to get the best out of it a good level of coding understanding is required, it's more of a speed improvement for me, I could generate the code it gives me but it would take me much longer than the seconds it takes. I don't often do google searches nowadays to solve coding problems, I wonder how sites like stack exchange have or are going to be effected.
Just bear in mind that ChatGPT is not a substitute for knowing how to code. The stuff it churns out is frequently and architectural and performance nightmare..... while it usually works, it still requires someone who knows what they're doing to make it into a decent code implementation.
 
Caporegime
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Just bear in mind that ChatGPT is not a substitute for knowing how to code. The stuff it churns out is frequently and architectural and performance nightmare..... while it usually works, it still requires someone who knows what they're doing to make it into a decent code implementation.

I've seen a few posts on Reddit recently that are a bit worrying in terms of how much some developers rely on ChatGPT. There was a recent change that meant it didn't output code in the same way, and someone complained that their manager was now on their case because their productivity had dropped.

I think there will be regulation, because we're already at the point where AI is replacing jobs that probably shouldn't have been replaced, because it's based on very rudimentary data in terms of how efficient and effective it really is. Some areas seem safer than others for now, such as game development.
 
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Associate
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I use ChatGPT 4 and Pro Copilot, daily. GPT4 seems to have taken a bit of a dive in terms of quality for Excel VBA and SQL of late. But it's still ballpark and an accelerant/productivity booster vs. starting something from scratch. I tend to start things by rubber-ducking with it.
 
Associate
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It's pretty much the same impact AI will have on any industry. At the premium end it's just a tool to help. The 'build em quick, stack em high and sell em cheap' market will be ruled by the most efficient AI.
For now. 5 years ago the current state would have been unthinkable. With the speed that AI is developing, in another 5 years who knows.

I'd hesitate suggesting anyone consider starting a career in coding now - it doesn't seem like an industry were many humans will have long term prospects any more.
 
Associate
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For now. 5 years ago the current state would have been unthinkable. With the speed that AI is developing, in another 5 years who knows.

I'd hesitate suggesting anyone consider starting a career in coding now - it doesn't seem like an industry were many humans will have long term prospects any more.
I'd have to agree. I don't think it will completely wipe out coding/programming jobs, there are will always be a small minority of people who are on another level to the majority of programmers, I've worked with a couple and it's mind boggling how quickly they can conceptualize things, the top 1%, I'm sure they'll always be needed... but the 99% of code monkeys (of which I am a part of :p) I suspect will be obsolete within the next 10-15 years max.

I think some other jobs will go even quicker, one of my friends is just starting the 7 year journey to become an architect... if that job isn't obsolete (at least, the planning and designing elements of it) by the time he's finished the degree I'll be very surprised.
 
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Soldato
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I'd have to agree. I don't think it will completely wipe out coding/programming jobs, there are will always be a small minority of people who are on another level to the majority of programmers, I've worked with a couple and it's mind boggling how quickly they can conceptualize things, the top 1%, I'm sure they'll always be needed... but the 99% of code monkeys (of which I am a part of :p) I suspect will be obsolete within the next 10-15 years max.

I think some other jobs will go even quicker, one of my friends is just starting the 7 year journey to become an architect... if that job isn't obsolete (at least, the planning and designing elements of it) by the time he's finished the degree I'll be very surprised.
I think it depends a lot on what work you're doing. I think a lot of low-risk stuff like simple apps, websites etc will just get churned out by AI. But anywhere regulated, i.e. Finance, will still need a lot of human involvement.

My field (games) I don't see being impacted unduly. 90% of the challenge isnt writing the code itself, it's the ethereal 'feel' and fun factor which I don't see AI doing an effective job of.
 
Soldato
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I think it will take longer than people think to actually replace developers. I believe it will be a long time before AI can actually think and reason. What we're seeing now is a very powerful predictive text system, not actual machine intelligence. Don't get me wrong, I think generative AI will, and has already, changed the way a developer works. It will make us more productive. Junior developers will still exist, but their job will look/feel different.

Actual AGI is also extremely scary if you really think about it.
 
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