Hello ChatGPT, RIP software developer?
George Lynch, Head of Technology Advisory at NashTech shares his thoughts on what generative AI mean for software developers. This article first appeared on ComputerWeekly.com.
This year has seen a remarkable explosion of interest in Generative AI. Go back just six months, and most people had never heard of it. Now, it seems as though everyone – from tech professionals to students – is using it and experimenting, in particular, with the ‘poster child’ ChatGPT.
This has also generated increasing discussion of whether AI and Gen AI spell the end for human roles, including in software development. Does ChatGPT and its Gen AI cousins (such as Bard, Copilot and Bing Chat) mean the demise of the software developer – given that Gen AI can already generate code snippets?
It occurred to me that a good first step in considering this question was… to ask ChatGPT. As always, it gave an instant, eloquent answer, and the thrust of its response was ‘no’. ChatGPT and similar language models, it wrote, “are unlikely to replace software engineers entirely”. This is because software engineering “involves much more than just natural language processing” and requires a range of skills such as problem-solving and collaboration that are “beyond the scope” of Gen AI.
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Crimson is part of Nash Squared, the leading global provider of talent and technology solutions.