Amazon recently announced that its generative AI-powered coding assistant, CodeWhisperer, will be available for developers for free.
Business consulting firm McKinsey & Company, predicts that generative AI coding assistants like CodeWhisper have the potential of saving tech companies $1 Billion in the coming years.
CodeWhisperer was launched as a preview beta last year but Amazon has made several big updates that make the tool more useful to coders.
The tool has been trained using millions of lines of publically available code but Amazon has now added customization capabilities that allow the tool to access and evaluate internal code bases in a safe and secure manner.
This feature means that the suggested code output will be based on a client’s code using a variety of model and context customizations.
This will save developers thousands of hours that are necessary to evaluate code, APIs, and interactions prior to beginning to write code.
Microsoft offers its own coding generative AI called GitHub Copilot which will cost individuals $10 per month or organizations $19 per month/per user.
Google offshoot DeepMind also released a coding assistant called AlphaCode that can also be accessed through GitHub.
While all this seems exciting, there are many who remain skeptical of the security and accuracy of these models and the risks inherent in giving them free rein to proprietary code.
As with all things AI, there are pros and cons of using tools like CodeWhisperer, but collectively these tools will fundamentally shift how code is produced.