GitHub’s new tool uses AI to craft code. Some developers are furious

An AI programming tool that makes sample code easier to find might sound like a godsend for software developers, but the reception for Microsoft’s new GitHub Copilot tool has been a bit chillier.

Copilot launched last week in an invite-only Technical Preview, promising to save time by responding to users’ code with its own smart suggestions. Those suggestions are based on billions of lines of public code that users have publicly contributed to GitHub, using an AI system called Codex from the research company OpenAI.

While Copilot might be a major time saver that some have hailed as “magic,” it’s also been met with skepticism by other developers, who worry that the tool could help circumvent licensing requirements for open source code and violate individual users’ copyrights.


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