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Will ChatGPT kill programmers?

Will ChatGPT kill programmers?

María

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If you are a programmer or software engineer, it is more than likely that you have been fascinated by the capabilities of ChatGPT, the conversational model developed by OpenAI. ChatGPT has become a phenomenon by itself since its release in November 2022 and its users number in the millions.

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ChatGPT is based on the GPT-3 language model, which is also proprietary to OpenAI. It has more than 175 million parameters and is trained with a large amount of text, which gives it great generative abilities.

However, one of the most captivating aspects has been its ability to write code. Just tell him what you want him to do and he can build anything from web pages to applications or even games. Some of the languages that ChatGPT masters are Python, C and Javascript, widely used in development environments.

As is often the case in these cases, there are those who see this as an excellent support tool thanks to the time savings involved. On the other hand, the more catastrophic ones believe that ChatGPT could “eliminate” the classic figure of the programmer.

Contrary to what is happening with imagers and artists, the more creative writing sector seems to be breathing easy (for the time being). Novelists, copywriters and journalists have noted that ChatGPT is not yet at a “worrying” stage. The results that OpenAI’s chatbot produces do not take into account many of the aspects that are key to good prose: little personality, prone to factual errors and with no apparent objective that manages to convey emotion.

It is different with programming. The only thing that matters is that the code works according to what is requested and needed, no more. Effectiveness takes precedence over everything else, something logical if we take into account that the technical aspect is very important when it comes to programming. Even so, don’t think that ChatGPT is going to reduce engineers and programmers to ashes.

To begin with, ChatGPT is only capable of creating very simple programs. In fact, if you ask for something too complex, the chatbot will politely send you off to fry asparagus. Therefore, currently ChatGPT would serve more as an assistant when programming. However, this does not mean that it cannot evolve to offer a better service.

So, what can ChatGPT really offer a programmer today? Many industry professionals seem to agree on one thing: it is a very valuable tool. Thanks to ChatGPT, you could generate frameworks and preview versions of more “complicated” applications. In other words, it could create the basis for faster development times.

Artificial intelligence is often talked about with fear and admiration. Will it create jobs? Will it demolish what we already know? While ChatGPT will speed up the completion of tasks, it is a fact that it will also create new needs and jobs. This includes the much criticized “prompt engineer” or what is the same: giving instructions to generative models to get the most out of them.

If you want to rest easy, at the moment this technology is unlikely to replace everything you’ve learned about coding and engineering. Your knowledge is still very necessary, even if you change how you use it to carry out your work. In the end, all those who are able to take this technology and use it to their advantage will prosper.

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