Can AI replace programmers?

PROGRAMMING

 We can all see how new technologies keep developing every day. Some people even think that robots will become so advanced that they will take over the world and become our rulers. Machines can already replace people in some jobs and artificial intelligence poses a threat to high-skilled professionals, such as programmers.

Although programmers are the creators of AI, some people are worried that AI will progress so much that it will surpass its creators and steal their jobs. They believe that the human brain cannot compete with AI and that AI is always one step ahead. AI will change the world in unimaginable ways and human beings will no longer be welcome in this new world.

Such beliefs seem exaggerated, although the future of software programming cannot be predicted with certainty. For now, it is quite unlikely that AI will replace humans completely and programmers, in particular, do not need to worry about it.

Programmers’ biggest concern regarding AI

Programmers have proved to be very successful in developing sophisticated and complex algorithms, but they are also able to make software that can do the same a lot faster than them. The biggest advantage of AI over programmers is that AI can create software code with no errors and it can detect errors much faster than programmers. Such codes are essential in safety-critical systems because a mistake in the code can cause serious damage or death.

Programmers’ biggest advantage over AI

If we remember that great minds stand behind every invention, we soon realize that human intelligence is necessary to create AI in the first place and it will always have an important role in programming no matter how advanced AI becomes.  

In fact, scientists have already conducted tests to see whether AI can win the fight against programmers. The results showed that AI codes had syntactic errors and non-defined or unused variables. This shows that there is still a need for human software developers.

AI is at its infancy

 AI is not yet as developed as we think. It will take a lot of time before it can incorporate the business aspect of programming. The key to being a good programmer is to know what to develop and in what order. The quality of the code can be improved but not by replacing humans with AI. Human developers can work on better quality code using static code analysis, whereas AI is an application that analyzes codes that have already been written by programmers, which means that AI may not come up with any solutions that can make the quality of the code better.

Can programmers and AI be partners?

Programming is certainly going to continue evolving and reaching higher and higher levels of abstraction. For this progress to go on, the creativity that only human beings possess is absolutely necessary. AI can gather data, analyze it and create code based on the data, but it lacks the motivation to create that only human beings have. Therefore, it is more likely that programmers and AI will become partners than that AI will replace programmers. Programmers can combine their sophisticated knowledge and AI’s precision to develop even better ways of coding. AI can also help programmers understand more options, which can lead to new ideas and inventions.

Technology is beyond any doubt a powerful tool, but it is still a tool that needs someone to use it and control it. There is no reason to worry that AI will be any different at the moment, but we should never forget that any piece of technology can be used for both creative and destructive purposes, which depends only on us.