Welcoming AI Overlords for Fun & Profit

AI isn't coming for our jobs...it's coming to *help* our jobs. Here's why.

Welcoming AI Overlords for Fun & Profit

I surprised myself (pleasantly) for being fully in support of AI-backed tools like the recently announced GitHub Copilot, which uses OpenAI's GPT-3 to power next-level IntelliSense.

How dare you?!? Bots will replace us!!

Mm, I think that's a bit melodramatic. For one, bots have been replacing us since the industrial age...and new jobs always emerge as a result. For two, this is likely going to accelerate a developer's ability to code, not replace it. There is so. much. menial. code that still has to be written in order for software to function. You're telling me a bot will do that for me? Please do, Mr. Robot, by all means. I have a ton of more important high-value items that require my attention.

When Google Glass was pitched, launched, crashed & burned, back in 2013, I struggled to think of one practical use it for it...and all I could come up with was: "Well, maybe if it could make suggestions to a programmer in real-time on how to improve their code..."

Isn't that what GitHub Copilot is?

That's good! That's a thing all developers can use, both young and old alike.

I've been in the business and I'm still Googling solutions to problems, still posting questions on StackOverflow. That's not going to magically stop one day. If you're in technology, you know the deal: everything changes so fast, you'll be doing it until the day you die.

Writing a blog post about bots is an excuse to embed Bjork's "All is Full of Love"

I've had the luxury of playing around with the beta of GPT-3. It is really cool. It is also light years away from true contextual thought. The secret of software development is that it may be easy to write functions to do "a thing"...it is insanely difficult to step back, see the bigger architectural picture, and stitch those functions together into a cohesive product that behaves the way a customer expects it to. No bot will be doing that anytime soon...not in our lifetime.

Side note: this is also why I'm a big supporter of NoCode tools like Retool. It's exactly the same argument.

Retool: A NoCode platform (we use it at Wrapmate!)

Retool is fantastic way to accelerate a developer's ability to piece together a semi-functional app (aka, a "Proof of Concept"). NoCode is kind of a misnomer -- what these tools really ought to be called should be "Low Code", because there is always some degree programming necessary. And guess what? A bot won't be doing that either.

Rest easy, conspiracists. AI is not coming for our jobs – they're coming to help our jobs. By allowing bots to do more of the tedious work that usurp our time, we're freed to spend more time on things we deem more valuable to us. So, why not embrace those AI overlords? I, for one, will be.