GitHub Makes Copilot Available to the Public for $10/month, Free for Students and Open Source Project Maintainers

GitHub has announced that Copilot, its new AI pair programming assistant, is now available to developers for $10/month or $100/year. Verified students and maintainers of open source projects will have free access to Copilot. The assistant is available as an extension for popular code editors, including Neovim, JetBrains IDEs, Visual Studio, and Visual Studio Code.

Copilot was trained on billions of lines of public code in order to offer real-time code suggestions inside the editor. GitHub claims it is capable of suggesting complete methods, boilerplate code, whole unit tests, and complex algorithms.

“With GitHub Copilot, for the first time in the history of software, AI can be broadly harnessed by developers to write and complete code,” GitHub CEO Thomas Dohmke said. “Just like the rise of compilers and open source, we believe AI-assisted coding will fundamentally change the nature of software development, giving developers a new tool to write code easier and faster so they can be happier in their lives.”

Despite its many claims to improve developer efficiency, Copilot is still a controversial tool. Opponents object to the tool’s creators training the AI on open source code hosted on GitHub, generating code without attribution, and then charging users monthly to use Copilot. It has also been criticized for producing insecure code and copying large chunks of code verbatim.

Evan after 12 months in technical preview, Copilot remains generally polarizing at its public launch. Developers either seem to be impressed by its capabilities or offended by its ethical ambiguities. GitHub had more than 1.2 million developers in its technical preview and reports that those who started using Copilot quickly found it “an indispensable part of their daily workflows.”

“In files where it’s enabled, nearly 40% of code is being written by GitHub Copilot in popular coding languages, like Python—and we expect that to increase,” Dohmke said. “That’s creating more time and space for developers to focus on solving bigger problems and building even better software.”

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6 responses to “GitHub Makes Copilot Available to the Public for $10/month, Free for Students and Open Source Project Maintainers”

    • The docs say “GitHub Copilot is powered by Codex, a generative pretrained AI model created by OpenAI. It has been trained on natural language text and source code from publicly available sources, including code in public repositories on GitHub.”

  1. I’ve been following Copilot for awhile. I’ve always read it had a few bugs in it. But I guess the best way to fix those bugs is to release it to the public. I also read ‘Copilot’ was a fast learner. And can learn quickly while it’s being used. You can read more about Copilot and Artificial Intelligence on my Artificial Intelligence Magazines ‘The AI Times’ Link aitimespage.com/ai

  2. First, you don’t need to pay if you don’t want to. No one is forcing you.

    Second, I’ve been using the technical preview, and it’s awesome. The way it sometimes knows what I want to code and just dumps the code where I can edit it (not blindly use it), is amazing.

    When registering for it, I had the option to tick a box and include my code in Copilot suggestions. I have both public and private repos in GitHub, both personal and organization accounts. I am perfectly happy to let Copilot get code from my repos, as I am not storing anything private, passwords, API keys, account and so on.

    That being said, I might not go ahead and pay from August 2022 (it’s free until then). I had my fun. It’s time to move on.

  3. Whoever didn’t remove their code from Github when Microsoft bought them in 2018, you have a new reason now.

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