Artificial intelligence is a hot topic lately, especially with the popularity of things like ChatGPT. What if you could use this kind of technology to help write code better, faster, and more efficiently? GitHub Copilot is an extension for Visual Studio that uses artificial intelligence to help you do just that.

What is GitHub Copilot?

GitHub Copilot is an AI pair programmer extension for Visual Studio that is able to intelligently look at the context of your code and provide things like code completions, suggestions, and even full snippets of code for your project. This technology enables developers to write code more efficiently and to minimize errors.

GitHub Copilot is different from existing technology like IntelliSense and IntelliCode. IntelliSense is a code completion feature that is built-in to Visual Studio. It can provide suggestions based on the current context, such as variable names and classes, but does not use AI. IntelliCode, on the other hand, uses AI to analyze your code to understand common practices and provide whole-line completions. GitHub Copilot takes the features from each technology a little further by analyzing a vast dataset of publicly available code to provide things like context-aware code suggestions. The assistance that this extension offers to a developer is more advanced, and offers more accurate and relevant suggestions.

Research has found that GitHub Copilot users experience more job fulfillment and are able to stay in the flow longer to solve tough problems.


Getting Started

To use GitHub Copilot in Visual Studio, you need to have Visual Studio 2022 version 17.4.4 or later, and a GitHub Copilot subscription. You can get a free subscription if you are a verified student or a maintainer of a popular open-source project on GitHub.

To install the extension, you must enable GitHub Copilot from your GitHub settings. Then, install the extension from the Visual Studio Marketplace.

With the extension installed, you’re able to start using it in Visual Studio. You can do things like ask it to write code for you by simply typing it in natural language as a comment. You can also have it write those ever-important unit tests for you to make sure your code is working properly.

GitHub Copilot is a powerful tool for enhancing developer productivity and reducing disruptions. To learn more or to get started, contact our team of experts here at PRAKTIK.