Microsoft intends to open up application development to everyone, thanks to artificial intelligence. By integrating the GPT-3 linguistic model into its Power Apps, the firm allows the use of natural language to generate lines of code.
The Microsoft Build 2021 conference this week, aimed at developers, was an opportunity to discover the firm’s projects, such as the next generation of Windows. In his opening presentation, Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, also announced the use of artificial intelligence to assist in programming and allow a “no-code” approach.
This progress is made possible thanks to GPT-3, the largest linguistic model, capable of generating texts thanks to deep learning. GPT-3 is based on a neural network with 175 billion parameters, developed by OpenAI and based on the Transformer model. It will be integrated into Microsoft’s Power Apps to translate natural language into programming code.
Power Fx, a low-code programming language inspired by Excel
It is not about automatically generating entire programs, at least not at the moment. This new system allows to generate lines of code from a description of the desired action. The AI then proposes several possibilities, leaving it up to the user to choose the right one. Microsoft chose to associate it with the Power Fx programming language launched in March and inspired by Microsoft Excel. It is a “low-code” language, in other words, it allows you to create programs with little code.
The goal is to allow more people to create applications without having to master a programming language, and to address a growing shortage of developers. Microsoft has announced early access starting in June, in English only for users in North America.