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Edenn Touitou
Edenn Touitou

Posted on

Github copilot is out of beta, would you use it ?

From the Github copilot doc page :

You can use GitHub Copilot to get autocomplete-style suggestions from an AI pair programmer as you code.

Essentially, Github copilot is a pair programming buddy, fueled by AI. It is compatible with most IDE and support languages such as JS/TS, Python, Ruby, GoLang.

Now that the free beta is closed and the final product is released, would you consider using it ? What do you think of the pricing ?

Discussion (10)

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ncpa0cpl profile image
ncpa0cpl

I was excited about Copilot, but now that I tried it I am just very disappointed.

I didn't spent that much time with it but so far it's been very difficult to have it suggest anything useful.

Here are some of the attempts I made with it:

  • I've tried to generate some simple React component, it suggested to me only one line, an import from a library, and then after selecting that suggestion, for the next line it would once again suggest the exact same thing, if I selected that, it would suggest it again, and so on, I was stuck in a never-ending loop
  • in other attempt it would start with something that actually looked like a React functional component but then keep suggesting the same exact useState over an over but with longer and longer names. In the end I wasn't even able to generate any valid React code.
  • I asked copilot to implement a mutex, and what I got was either a simple class with a single boolean attribute and lock/unlock functions wchich were setting that boolean to true or false, or something that actually made no sense at all.

Also in all the attempts I made there was only one or two suggestions available to chose from.

In the end I don't think I will be using it much if at all, since how it was performing so far I would probably waste more time trying to make it give me something useful than if I just wrote that code myself.

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fish1 profile image
Jacob Enders • Edited on

I found that Copilot was much more helpful when you write 'companion' code.

Take for example, you're writing two functions to make a GET and a POST request to an API. When you write the first GET request, it knows nothing about the API you're using or how you might want to use it. So you essentially need to write it yourself.

But then when you need to go and write the POST, it has the GET call as an example. Now it knows about the API and vaguely how you are going to be making the calls. You can almost tab complete the entire thing and just make a couple of changes to the parameters.

I found that using COPILOT with this mindset really takes advantage of its learning ability. It does pattern recognition, not mind reading.

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bradtaniguchi profile image
Brad

I'm a big fan of github products and services, I would consider paying for it if it was bundled with other offerings.

Except I personally am waiting for codespaces to come out of closed beta for individuals (its only available for organizations) and I'd consider combining the two.

I wouldn't use copilot for work, and only use it for personal projects. So having the pricing combined with pro+codespaces+copilot is something I'd consider together.

Otherwise ~8$ a month might be too steep for me for side-project work. However, I like working on my chromebook, and I like codespaces so combining those two is something I'd highly consider.

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kkrypt0nn profile image
Krypton • Edited on

Personally I've been mostly disappointed during the beta phase. For example lots of times it just proposes the exact the same that I've written above. I've deactivated it very quickly after I've tried it for 2-3 weeks. I just prefer to code without it - sometimes it even disturbs IntelliSense.
Now for $10/month or $100/year - no thanks, I won't purchase for that, I'd rather spend some time learning the language and getting more knowledge.

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mistval profile image
Randall

I have been using it since last year. I've found it helpful and I will pay for it. It's cheap relative to the productivity gains I get out of it.

When I get lucky, it writes entire functions and long snippets of code for me correctly, or close to it, but that's fairly rare. Where it shines is automating repetitive code writing and boilerplate. Here's an example that I remember from today, and I was able to reproduce right now, writing a new CLI script for Node.js. The dim text is Copilot's suggestion, which are spot-on in this case.

img1

img2

img3

That's a fair bit of typing it saved me, and it does that pretty often. Of course, it often generates code I don't want too, and I waste (usually sub-second) time looking at a garbage suggestion. But it's a net positive.

And the more you use it, the more effective it becomes, as you become better at predicting what it's going to suggest and when it's going to be helpful.

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volker_schukai profile image
Volker Schukai

the price is ok, the only thing i think with is that github (microsoft) gets to read all your code. for opensource this is certainly not an issue, but for intellectual property it is.

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camco profile image
Camco

That ship has sailed. Almost nothing is private any more

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volker_schukai profile image
Volker Schukai

This is of course a fatalistic view, but not the only one. :-)

In europe, we have the GDPR rules that companies have to follow.

People have the possibility to demand the deletion of their data. But how do i get the data out of the ai database?

in any case, it is important to switch off the telemetry.

there is also a discussion about this here:
github.com/github-community/commun...

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deozza profile image
Edenn Touitou Author

And thanks to GDPR and lazyness or cost-effectiveness reasons, companies apply the same privacy rules globally and not only for EU.

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bwca profile image
Volodymyr Yepishev

I haven't tried it yet, hope it isn't Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V as a service :)