- Google’s generative AI tool Bard can now function as a programming assistant, the company announced Friday.
- Bard can help with software development and programming tasks such as code generation, code debugging and explaining code snippets. Bard can understand more than 20 programming languages and assist with writing functions for Google Sheets.
- “When it comes to coding, Bard may give you working code that doesn’t produce the expected output, or provide you with code that is not optimal or incomplete,” Paige Bailey, group product manager for Google Research, said in a company blog post. “Always double-check Bard’s responses and carefully test and review code for errors, bugs and vulnerabilities before relying on it.”
While AI-powered programming assistants can aid software engineers and programmers in their day-to-day roles, it could take them multiple prompts until Bard is able to generate helpful and accurate code.
If Bard generates code with an error, the company said engineers and developers can tell the tool and it will help debug.
“Despite these challenges, we believe Bard’s new capabilities can help you by offering new ways to write code, create test cases or update APIs,” Bailey said in the blog post. “If Bard quotes at length from an existing open source project, it will cite the source.”
If the same content is provided on multiple websites, the tool will point to a popular source. If the source is a code repository, the citation could reference an applicable open source license, according to a Bard FAQ page.
Google merged its Brain team from Google Research and DeepMind to accelerate the company’s progress in AI, the company announced Thursday.
The possibility of writing code quicker is a draw for many engineers and developers. Within the first month of the public release of GitHub’s AI-based pair programming tool Copilot, the company gained 400,000 subscribers.
AI tools are the top three fastest-growing software products across software marketplace and review website G2 this year, the company said, when comparing more than 2,000 categories.
Microsoft-owned GitHub has continued to upgrade its Copilot tool with the latest technology from OpenAI and security guardrails.
When GitHub publicly released a Copilot designed for businesses, the company added capabilities such as automatically blocking common insecure code suggestions by targeting hard-coded credentials and SQL and path injections as part of the security push.