Boosting Your Code: The AI-Powered Visual Studio Code Extensions You Need

The software development landscape is evolving rapidly, thanks to the infusion of AI into Visual Studio Code extensions. These AI-powered tools are transforming the way developers work, making coding more efficient and productive. In this article, we’ll explore the top 10 Visual Studio Code generative AI extensions in 2023, each shaking up the software development space in its unique way.

IntelliCode: Supercharging Code Completion

IntelliCode is a game-changer built into Microsoft’s flagship IDE, Visual Studio, and now available in the open-source, cross-platform VS Code editor. With over 27 million downloads, IntelliCode enhances code-completion skills. It goes beyond traditional IntelliSense by analyzing thousands of open-source GitHub repositories to prioritize code fragments most likely to be used. Additionally, it offers whole-line code completions, making coding faster and more accurate.

Tabnine AI Autocomplete: Your Coding Assistant

Tabnine AI Autocomplete is a must-have for developers working with JavaScript, Python, TypeScript, PHP, Go, Java, Ruby, and more. With over 5 million downloads, this AI code helper leverages machine learning models based on open-source projects. It supports whole-line and full-function code completions, as well as natural language to code conversions. Developers can describe the desired function in plain language, and Tabnine suggests the appropriate code. It even generates unit testing code, streamlining the testing process.

GitHub Copilot: Your AI Pair Programmer

GitHub Copilot disrupted the software development world in 2021 with its advanced machine language models developed in collaboration with Microsoft and OpenAI. This “AI pair programmer” not only provides code completion but can also transform comments into code, generate unit tests, and even create SQL queries. It’s compatible with various programming languages, including PHP, Java, Python, Go, C#, C++, and Java.

Azure Machine Learning (Preview): Empowering Data Scientists

Despite its “Preview” label, Azure Machine Learning has been a staple since 2017, with over 1.5 million downloads. It connects seamlessly with Azure Machine Learning services, enabling developers to perform tasks directly within VS Code. You can build and train machine learning models quickly, leverage tools like TensorFlow and PyTorch, and experiment locally before scaling up with GPU-enabled cloud resources. Automated machine learning and hyper-parameter tuning expedite data science processes, while integrated CI/CD tools simplify testing and deployment.

Azure Machine Learning – Remote (Preview): Access Anywhere

As the name suggests, Azure Machine Learning – Remote complements its predecessor by allowing access to remote Azure Compute Instances. Launched two years ago and recently updated, it boasts over 1.3 million downloads and favorable reviews. This extension makes it easy to work on machine learning projects from anywhere.

Dependency Analytics (Preview): Smart Dependency Management

Dependency Analytics by Red Hat provides valuable insights into your application’s dependencies, including security and license compatibility. It uses AI-based guidance to recommend suitable dependencies for your application. Currently supporting Maven, Python, Go, and npm applications, with more language support on the horizon, this extension has garnered over 1 million downloads and impressive user ratings.

Blackbox: Comprehensive Language Support

Blackbox supports an extensive range of programming languages, including Java, Scala, C++, C#, JavaScript, SQL, PHP, Go, TypeScript, Kotlin, R, Swift, Rust, Ruby, Python, Dart, and MATLAB. Its recent update includes repository and code searches, extending to Jupyter Lab and Jupyter Notebooks. Additionally, it provides autocomplete for popular Python-based projects.

Inkling: Teaching AI with Bonsai

Inkling is your gateway to Microsoft’s Bonsai, a declarative, statically-typed language for teaching AI. Bonsai accelerates the development of AI-powered automation, enhancing product quality and productivity while reducing downtime. Currently in beta and operating on the Azure cloud, it requires a Microsoft account.

ChatGPT: Conversations with AI

ChatGPT is a free utility developed by Ali Gençay. Initially, it had just 42,457 downloads, but it has since skyrocketed to 368,884, showcasing the appeal of OpenAI’s AI-powered chatbot. ChatGPT supports browser and official API interactions for a variety of machine language models, including ChatGPT, GPT3.5, GPT3, and Codex. With the latest upgrade, it now offers support for the OpenAI API access and the OpenAI GPT-3.5-Turbo model, which is now the default choice.

In conclusion, these top 10 Visual Studio Code generative AI extensions are reshaping the software development landscape in 2023. From supercharging code completion to enabling AI pair programming and smart dependency management, these extensions offer invaluable tools for developers. Embrace the power of AI in your coding journey and stay ahead in the ever-evolving world of software development.