+ 91

Will AI make programmers obsolete?

If AI reaches a point where computers can understand what we want through a simple conversation, rather than a programming language, will this make programmers unnecessary?

19th Mar 2017, 4:30 PM
Michael Foster
Michael Foster - avatar
118 Answers
+ 28
I'm seeing alot of yes and no answers here. But, I believe the correct answer is that no one really knows. When you get into things like machine learning, strong AI and the like I think you need to take off your rational thinking programmer's hat and start thinking in a more speculative way. When the machines start thinking for themselves there's no telling whay they'll be capable of. The goal of AI is to create an intellect. An intellect doesn't just solve complex problems submitted to it. an intellect can learn discover and innovate without prompting from a human being. If our goal is to create a truly independently thinking machine then we really will have no clue what it will be capable of or how much we'll have to guide it's actions. An AI' s capabilities will be decided by the AI and how it develops itself.
21st Mar 2017, 2:04 PM
Chris - avatar
+ 77
AI is a misconception. That is not to say that we cannot create machines that can solve real life problems like driving, translating languages, so on and so forth. The recent example where Deep Thought beat the best Go players in the world is only a new beginning. But, please remember that the machine has no awareness that it is playing a game. It doesn't have any understanding. It doesn't even know that it won the game! It can not even give any meaning to Os or 1s. Intelligence that we humans and even animals seem to possess is beyond programs. E.g., x + y = 1. You know that such an equation can represent a line in Cartesian plane. That means something to you. But, it does not mean anything to a program. As Turing also put it, asking whether computers can think is absurd. Chinese Room argument is a good one, if you want to find out more...
21st Mar 2017, 1:23 PM
Bulent Basaran
Bulent Basaran - avatar
+ 34
Just read about new Microsoft's AI for writing code. Idea is: you tell it what to do (result) but all other things like code, logic and so on you leave for AI to think about.
21st Mar 2017, 6:12 PM
Illusive Man
Illusive Man - avatar
+ 33
The potential of AI is still theoretical in it's modern advanced stages of development, but the answer seems to be when, not if they will make programmers, just like others, obselete. If you use things like TurboTax, or even a calculator, instead of an accountant, then you've probably heard the hell raised by those unemployed by simple AI's. The intervention of our godlike power over AIs programmable "minds" seems to be necessary not to make ourselves obsolete in *EVERY* aspect of technological advancements. The question then turns to will humans eventually live in utopian harmony with the entities that we create to do all of our work for us? While we can either act as slavemaster supervision, or just trust their built in adaptability, and have the human race fall into being oblivious as to what's being developed by the AIs, and for what purpose. It seems that the survival instinct in humans will always insure that we are hopefully not completely obselete to the AI, without first containing any AI project to it's own "firewalled" universe.
25th Apr 2017, 12:35 AM
David Hutto
David Hutto - avatar
+ 31
Anyway: All hail SkyNet! or DeepBlue... or Watson... whatever
25th Apr 2017, 12:09 AM
Illusive Man
Illusive Man - avatar
+ 30
i think programmer will evolve to new level. In the course of history, programmer adapted with the development of programming language. From assembly language to the present-high level language. there will be new innovation in programming to adapt with ai-based device. by the way, adapting is humanity best power. so i am optimist.
22nd Mar 2017, 12:22 AM
Agus Mei
Agus Mei - avatar
+ 25
In my opinion, such an AI can't be designed in the first place. No one can replicate human brain.
21st Mar 2017, 12:58 PM
Krishna Teja Yeluripati
Krishna Teja Yeluripati - avatar
+ 23
Potentially. Ai will make many jobs obsolete, but I doubt programming will be one of them, at most, AI will become coworkers/tools to help developers.
21st Mar 2017, 10:00 AM
Joshua Keith Pearson
Joshua Keith Pearson - avatar
+ 23
Yes and No but mostly Yes, There is a few documentaries on this very topic! It explains how John Conner had to more or less save the human race by stopping the development of an A. I. program called Skynet that would of otherwise killed off the human race. Oh and there is another documentory about this hacker named Neo....
3rd May 2017, 4:24 PM
ɔ͒̋ᴉ̼̻̤͙͇͈̓ͧʇ̋̌̃ḓ̣ͯʎ̱̝̗̗̺̐͊ɹʞ͇̮́̍̾̽̈́̓ - avatar
+ 21
No, Al won't make programmers obsolete. Nothing can recreate even 1% of the human or even animal brain
22nd Mar 2017, 4:14 PM
Gami - avatar
+ 21
I think big companies are building that kind of ai. Power; space; maintance problems will not stop evolution of ai because big companies will do whatever it takes. Maybe a (disappointed) engineer on a big company will sabotage the protection code because of revenge, money or even some threats. Maybe a protection for humans which will be removed by accidently on a new version. Maybe some people will decide there is too many human being in the world. Maybe hunger for money/power... Maybe they will think they can manage/control that kind of ai... I think one day human beings will fight with ai for their life. Sorry for the English.
22nd Mar 2017, 6:32 PM
Umut Dalkılıç
Umut Dalkılıç - avatar
+ 19
I think programming languages will become increasingly easy in the future, so they will become much easier to use for people with less technical skills. You could think of IDEs giving suggestions of code improvements or high-level structures that work out-of-the-box. In this development it will be required that programmers will have more functional knowledge about the purpose they are programming for instead of having a lot of technical code knowledge.
21st Mar 2017, 12:00 PM
Pieter Van der deijl
Pieter Van der deijl - avatar
+ 19
Not until the software, and hardware(including robotics), have evolved, and adapted themselves programmatically to perform more random("imaginative" vs. routine) smaller, and larger scale tasks for HUMAN benefit.
21st Mar 2017, 10:01 PM
David Hutto
David Hutto - avatar
+ 18
maybe someday but, don't worry yet the time to worry will be when you see that they had thousands upon thousands upon thousands of jobs in other fields that have been taken over by artificial intelligence. After you notice all those jobs gone and everybody is talking to the machines that took them over, that is the time to worry
31st May 2017, 6:20 PM
Shawn Gillis
Shawn Gillis - avatar
+ 17
I am surprised about the number of answers to the tune of "no way", especially considering easily accessible high-quality information on what's going on on the AI front. I don't see the reason why AI wouldn't be able to make most of the programmers obsolete. And in a so called 'strong' version, AI is an equivalent of a human mind. In that case, there's no reason to think it wouldn't make every programmer obsolete. Strong AI would have every capability of the human mind plus virtually infinite memory and virtually infinite computational power. The question is, is strong AI possible? The arguments against its possibility are far from conclusive. And the speed of AI development is staggering. I started programming to gain the new tools for expression and new ways of understanding the world. AI won't do it for me for sure unless I integrate with it somehow. When I think about the question of AI making different types of labour obsolete I do not see much hope for the future of human workers of any kind.
22nd Mar 2017, 8:48 PM
Łukasz Kozak
Łukasz Kozak - avatar
+ 17
@corn Because someone will pay that programmer lots of 💰
27th Mar 2017, 11:53 AM
Michael Foster
Michael Foster - avatar
+ 15
It is a very complex question that is beyond the simple computer context. Nature had taken so long to make our intelligence, our brain, our system. Now if programmers becomes obsolete maybe means that we no longer be the most clever species. Intelligence and knowliedge is some of the major features that put mens at the very top in the struggle for survival, what will be if a new "species" or a machine outdo us?
22nd Mar 2017, 9:41 PM
AZTECCO - avatar
+ 15
@Peter Osanebi . When we are ill... who does maintain our health? People (medics/doctors) does. Objects of the same class. ;-) Same creatures...So if AI will became reality it'll be possible for AI to maintain bugs and updates. :-)))
26th Mar 2017, 5:07 PM
Andrew Harchenko (Tomsk)
Andrew Harchenko (Tomsk) - avatar
+ 14
Technically - yes. But you will be dead by the time that happens, so don't worry 😂
21st Mar 2017, 1:11 PM
Skinnyman - avatar
+ 14
To answer your question, on a situation where there are not much negative factor remaining: Yes But now as you can see, that is nearly impossible to happen, if you study computer science, you would know why I say it is impossible: Firstly, space needed, specially physical space. Today, our 6~8 atoms in our harddisk makes up 1bit. So in order to make that kind of robot, imagine the physical space needed, it may potentially end up bigger than the observable universe as the user's demand grows, even if we scale it down to 1 bit per atom. Meaning that even if your house itself, right now, is an AI and is made out of HardDisks, most likely it wouldn't even meet all of your demands. Finally, neurals, meaning that AI will learn more and more. As they do so, they take up more memory storage. Secondly, computational power (time too), today, we have running up to a max of ~4GHz of computational power. And as you know, right now we are even facing issues with our CPU even on making it multi-tasking tons of basic stuff. Now imagine your AI in the future, even if it runs at 10GHz+, to let it do those tasks + required tasks it needs to, you will sometimes see the robot relatively slowing down, and finally, heating up. Thirdly, hardware management, though possible to ask an AI to maintain its own hardware, but now the problem is : What if it want to maintain and check its neural?(Brain) That is a problem, so technically we programmings still have to come in too. Even if they manage to, check the previous points. Fourth, Power, Yes, a very, very important issue. Whatever we do, we need energy, converting one form to another (Physics!). We humans get energy from food, but robots get it from electricity. Telling AIs to get its energy from food is near impossible, and hence, it needs electricity. And nowadays electricity bills are rising, also, cruel oil are running out. There are more factors but those are less of a concern. Hence that is why this is quite nearly impossible to happen unless those factors gets removed.
22nd Mar 2017, 8:37 AM
Wen Qin
Wen Qin - avatar