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Joel Ruiz
Joel Ruiz

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What will programming look like in 100 years?

Think about the languages you use. What improvements will make them better? Now repeat that improvement process 10^13 times.

The year is now 2120, and development of code has been evolving through the ages for four generations.

You now have 3 physical modes of software development:

  • Typing syntax with keyboard (legacy)
  • Talking in natural language the software requirements to an AI IDE that translates to working application. (most popular)
  • Thinking in a dream state, which attempts to extrapolate the ideas into software requirements passed to an AI IDE that translates to working application. (experimental)

Natural Understanding AI has taken central role in everyday development, handling every facet of hardware and software development. Even the legacy coders cannot escape its grasp, as its integration in computers is far too deep.

Computer Science has shifted into linguistic teachings, to better transcribe the nuances of development. The English language has added millions of words to its dictionary to improve intent.

You want to build a video game, so you begin speaking...

Cavemen brandishing spears with the style of Call of Duty 103. Build and Launch.

You wait a few seconds until the progress bar is done.

Build Successful.  Launching...

You successfully made a Call of Duty 103 clone of cavemen, with thousands of spears. Before the screen starts, you are alerted to Copyright Infringement, and your social score has been flat-lined. A security facilitator will arrive at your door shortly.

You hear a knock at your door. The latest Iron XO is at the front steps. It does not wait for you to open the door. It melts a perfect silhouette through the door, and warns you to obey the law.

You decide to make another video game, so you begin speaking...

Cavemen brandishing spears with the style of Call of Duty 103, remove all copyright infringements. Build and Launch.

You shatter share the game with the world and play with a few random people, before going to bed and deleting the share.

Software development has been completely automated.

You are no longer needed.

Top comments (8)

lexlohr profile image
Alex Lohr

I think this prediction is the software development equivalent of flying cars. Almost every science fiction contains flying cars, but that caters more to the human dream of flying than to the physics involved, which contains a simple truth: flying cars are a ludicrous waste of energy.

The same can be said about an AI that could be able to perform as is told in this prediction. It would suck up electrical power in amounts that would let bitcoin seem really energy-saving in comparison.

Why yes, we will certainly have AI in development, but it will be still confined to assisting the developer. Why? Because a developer is much more energy-efficient as any AI - and if our species plans to survive, we'd rather conserve as much energy as possible in order to keep climate change at bay. Otherwise, in 100 years, no human being will be alive to need software development at all.

joetex profile image
Joel Ruiz • Edited

Do you still believe this after seeing ChatGPT? This is just 3 years later.

lexlohr profile image
Alex Lohr

I have had a thorough look and I'm still convinced that we're not going to be replaced rather than augmented. Yes, you can make it do simple tasks, but it takes a lot of trial and error to get working solutions for complex issues out of ChatGPT.

joetex profile image
Joel Ruiz • Edited

Perhaps it's a 500 year thought, but people have been slowly abstracting and simplifying development since the 1950s, and today developers can hackathon an application in a day, where it would take months or years for the same product 20 years prior.

I often find myself coding the same logic across different projects, with many dejavu moments.

There is a science behind breaking down a requirement and transforming it into code. It follows a straight path, which AIs can one day process for us.

Imagine having to add a feature within an existing codebase. You have to find spots to inject the new code.

AI wouldn't do that, it would rewrite the whole application from scratch with the new feature standardized.

lexlohr profile image
Alex Lohr

Let me just ask one question: who develops the AI that takes over development?

You will probably answer: another AI.

However, at the end of the chain, there will still be human developers, because you need someone who sets the expectations, checks for hidden biases, reviews the output and so on.

You will never not need developers. Merely the tasks done by developers will change.

eekayonline profile image
Edwin Klesman

In 100 years we will have AI interfaces either implanted, inside a wearable, or in your surrounding house.

You will be able to tell it what you desire using meta-data commands. You can include those commands in regular sentences and they will be extracted and converted into actions.

In order for professions, expertise, etc to be able to build software, you've paid quite the credits to obtain the "software engineering" profession starter kit and have been tweaking it with contextual information on your preferences, way of working and the demand of the customers that you provide value for.

Furthermore, you've been appending specialized commands and input to the basic kit so you are not "one in a dozen" but have added value for more user-friendly solutions.

Since you aren't the poorest but also not amongst the wealthiest of people, you can't afford any implants yet, and put down your portable processing unit on the table and interact with it:

"Prompt activate" ... [it responds with "activated" synthesized voice tweaked to your preferences]

"initialize project "Blendit" commit new feature smarthome integration"... [confirmed]

"scan area for wireless smartdevices" [ found 2 wifi networks "home" and "office" and 19 smarthome devices]

"filter smartdevices for window blends" [ 4 devices found]

"implement window blends logic into smarthome scenario holocall" [added devices to holocall scenario, would you like me to change their state upon triggered?]

"trigger state closed when holocall scenario is activated" [confirmed, state changed to close upon holocall activation"

"commit feature and test scenario" [ committed, will commence in 3 seconds... 2....1...activated holocall]

The hologram table activates and while it is starting up the blends go down to make the call more visible.

"Prompt finish project and standby" [ "saved the project, closing down..." the device goes to standby mode]

"holo call to owner" [hologram table answers: calling Mr Doe]

You indicate the customer that his blends have been implemented into the scenario and that the software has been updated. He looks around by tapping his Apple 2118 XR glasses activating the home cam, and send you the promised credits.

["120 earth credits received.. " sounds from your portable Prompt]

You think to yourself: great, 100 more and I can buy more modding capacity for Prompt... That will let me earn even more creds..

*walks outside, hauls a TeslaTaxi and navigates home while chilling before reaching the next customer and looking up when "Rambo 31; Cloned Blood" will be streamable in VRCinema **

bernardbaker profile image
Bernard Baker • Edited

Probably the most exciting article I've read on here 😀

adam_cyclones profile image
Adam Crockett 🌀

In 100 years we won't be typing this stuff, we will probably be thinking it. The vast majority of populus will code and language wars will become real wars thought by robots.