Published on March 3rd 2017
You know how teachers used to say, “You can’t cheat your way through life, so don’t cheat on this test.” They may have been right about the test...but not life.
Researchers at Microsoft and University of Cambridge have developed an Artificial Intelligence that’ll write code all by itself.
They call it DeepCoder
And it could change the job description for software developers.
The vision for DeepCoder is for a person to be able to merely give it an idea and the AI will automatically write all of the necessary code, without errors, in just seconds. More than anything, it will allow anybody with an idea to potentially build an internet business worth millions.
You’d think that DeepCoder would put a lot of programmers out of a job, but Armando Solar-Lezama, a professor at MIT, doesn’t think so. He believes this will enable programmers to attack more sophisticated problems, while the AI takes care of the tedious dirty-work.
Ironically, DeepCoder is a cheater itself
It works through a method called program synthesis, which essentially means stealing lines of code from other finished software. In the developer community, this is commonplace among the mid-to-lower level coders (script kiddies) because of the efficiency.
Currently, DeepCoder is capable of solving basic challenges one would see at programming competitions, nothing more than five lines of code at a time. But, it’s just starting out.
Its advantages are what sets it apart
Being that it is an AI, it has very little limitations to its work capabilities, allowing it to more swiftly and thoroughly scour source code databases, and put together programs in a way humans may not have thought of.
Most importantly, it has a great memory – reminding itself which code worked last time and which didn’t.
Honestly, why should I care
Aside from empowering the non-coder to build software, this signals the exciting times that are ahead for Artificial Intelligence and automation of white-collar jobs.
It can be fearful to think about a machine taking your job, but as long as you are aware of the possibility before it happens, you can prepare. Not to mention, AI will start by taking care of our dirty work.
For an accountant, AI will first learn to keep track of entries in the general ledger. For a marketer, AI will compile massive amounts of buying history and present you with a report on best marketing strategies. And for programmers, AI will write a lot of the time-consuming, simple code.
As long as you are open to adapting and aware of the changes, you won’t go extinct.