Since chatGPT came out I’ve wavered in caring about it, thinking it was cool, thinking it was relevant, etc. I read some articles detailing amazing experiences people had with it. I had it write some funny movie scripts and dialogue starring my friends and sent it to them and we had a good laugh. After the initial fascination wore off though I kind of just stopped caring. It got a little played out. Also AI tools, though fun to play with, just kind of feel depressing to use for some reason. I got to the point where if I saw an image with the chatGPT UI on any of my timelines, or if I saw the umpteenth thinkpiece about how everything is different now I would just kind of zip past it. I saw an image of an AI entrepreneurs meetup in SF or something and kind of rolled my eyes. Another hype cycle, whatever.
Over the last two days, however, the bulk of code I’ve “written” was chatGPT. It gives me something a bit off target, but I steer it back on course in a sentence or two and it sends me back what I wanted. I go to copy something from its output, spotting a bug in it but knowing I can just quickly fix the bug myself. No, actually there was no bug, my understanding was just wrong. I keep launching into writing something, hitting the point where I would go google something, and instead flexing this weird new muscle I never knew could exist where I instead think of how to reframe what I’m doing around chatGPT existing. I go to chatGPT and have it write the thing from scratch and it spits it back out perfectly.
Until just now, when I was stuck on a really squirrely stupid thing to be stuck on, and I knew it. A.K.A. basically the default state for anyone coding who is knee deep in something. I knew there was something slightly off with how I was importing something - blah blah blah is not a function but I know it’s a function in my lib so what am I importing wrong. I started googling and nothing coming up really addressed what I was dealing with. I stopped and asked chatGPT in plain english why I was stuck and pasted some of the code in. It said you’re importing it wrong, import it like this instead. I pasted in what it said and everything worked. Literal actual chills and I sat back in my chair and let an expletive fly. This was supposed to be the part where I blow a half hour. This was supposed to be the part my googling lands me deep in some non-explanation on Stack Overflow about the 3 versions ago version of the lib from 2017.
Hype can come and go with nothing ultimately changed and nothing left in its wake. This is not that. This is a switch got flipped and everything is different now. I’m just like reeling trying to think of all the things this will change and all the ways I need to completely blow up a huge chunk of what I’ve learned in my life and rebuild it on top of this.
I went to write this blog post to share my experience, but there’s always this friction with me and my static blog where I have to manually create the markdown file and manually add in the date and URL in a weird format and it’s just annoying. I’ve been meaning to write a script to just take the current datetime and spit out a markdown file template for a new post but haven’t gotten around to it - partially to retain the friction and make it so I have to actually want to post something to post it.
As you can guess, chatGPT wrote that entire script perfectly off a tiny prompt.