No-Code, Low-Code, and Low-Effort-Code

UPDATE: While this post is relatively dated (more than a year ago) and from the original Airtable Community, it is now suddenly mainstream in the wake of GPT attracting ~100 million users in a few months. Being one of the fortunate developers who leapt at the chance to test CoPilot during the alpha phase, I have used it in code production since mid-2021. I thought it was worth resurrecting this observation here and in a new light as GPT-4’s release is imminent.

Two of these terms are increasingly familiar to you; the third one – low-effort-code – is new, but you’ll be hearing about it more and the engineers at Airtable are likely very familiar with it. I just wish they’d bake the underlying AI into the Airtable code editors. Maybe the folks at SeaTable will listen because they support javascript and Python and GPT-3 supports both. :winking_face:

When I’m writing code, I have another programmer with me every day all the time. It’s an AI model that is constantly scanning my source code and making really fast lookups into about a trillion lines of code written by other programmers. It’s powered by GPT-3 and delivered as a plugin to VS Studio Code.

I typically use the VS Studio code editor to create Airtable scripts and as a result, my paired programmer has already learned how to write Airtable SDK scripts. As such, my low-code activities with Airtable have become more optimized - truly low-effort-code.

Here’s a little video demonstrating that this AI tool even knows how to comment my code.


I am using GitHub copilot in my VS Code and I absolutely swear by it. It saves me a lot of time typing by providing really good code completions. I usually use it for completions of 1-2 lines and that goes very smooth.

I am hesitant to take bigger chunks as suggestions, as sometimes even if the suggested logic is fine, I might miss in a big chunk that e.g. variables are named slightly differently. That results in painful debugging, but the real question is who named variable in a wrong way me or Copilot :joy:

The future is clearly in progress.

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