According to the latest McKinsey Global Survey, there has been a nearly 25% year-over-year increase in the use of AI in standard business processes. But recently, AI technologies made a sizable jump from routine process automation technologies to powerful assistants. They fulfill various tasks, including but not limited to creating websites and apps.
But will AI replace software engineers? Let’s find out what tasks it helps with and what will the future of web development look like.
Applications of Artificial Intelligence in Web Development
Artificial intelligence is the latest technology for web development, to date. It is capable of analyzing the hugest possible data arrays, making well-validated decisions, and providing accurate predictions. However, how can machine learning in web development work? Below are the most common AI in web development use cases.
Code generation, optimization, and completion
Recently, code generation, optimization, and completion were the tasks only human programmers can cope with. The development of AI changed the game a little. AI can generate code based on natural language descriptions of its purpose. For example, OpenAI’s Codex can write a piece of code in response to a programmer’s prompt, but at the same time, it still needs to be revised and checked manually. AI can also analyze the already existing code and suggest optimizations to make it faster and more efficient.
UI/UX design creation and optimization
In addition to being a powerful technology for web development, AI is also a pretty useful tool for web design. There are numerous applications that allow for creating a logo or any other visual asset that can be reused on the website. Plus, there are more innovative development solutions as well. For instance, Murf AI provides website templates generated by artificial intelligence. Uizard, in turn, uses AI features to scan sketches and transform them into beautiful designs automatically. Long story short, AI-powered tools help with designing user-friendly apps with less effort, lower cost, and more creativity.
Automated testing and predictive analytics
Now, AI is used in quality assurance and testing, in addition to website development and design. Indeed, this use case isn’t new — AI has long been used for automated testing. But in response to its evolution, the technical power grows too, and now AI tools can also be used to analyze data and predict issues that may arise during the deployment process. This allows teams to proactively address the smallest risks and nuances before they become major problems.
Deployment automation and version control
For more complex projects, artificial intelligence becomes a part of the Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) process. The latter, as the name suggests, is a methodology according to which each new piece of code is deployed to production automatically, allowing for faster and more consistent deployments. As a part of the DevOps process, AI can be used to analyze code changes and suggest the best version control strategy to ensure that changes are properly tracked and managed.
Benefits of AI Web Development
The benefits of artificial intelligence in web development are significant. Let’s take a look at the major ones.
- Streamlined website development process. Instead of making developers spend their time and effort on manual and laborious tasks, artificial intelligence helps them see the bigger picture of website development. While the time-consuming tasks are automated and the majority of the decisions are data-driven, the web development process becomes significantly more seamless and efficient.
- Bug-free coding and automated quality assurance. Through deep learning, AI-based web development software assists programmers in improving their code efficiency by detecting bugs and ensuring clarity. Automated testing solutions are also changing the ways how QA engineers and testers make sure the code will perform as expected (nevertheless, there are still some critical scenarios that should be tested manually. In addition, AI development and testing tools enable project owners to decrease costs. According to Statista, the average budget share allocated towards Quality Assurance (QA) and testing has been decreasing in recent years, while AI development is one of the reasons for a lower cost.
- The better customer experience at a lower cost. Artificial intelligence has long revolutionized the way projects deliver value to their customers. In 2023, it proceeds with this task, creating more opportunities for deeper personalization, automating tasks on the customers’ side, and detecting fraudulent activities.
Limitations of AI and Machine Learning in Web Development
So, the benefits of machine learning for business in general, and web development, in particular, are now much more clear. Let’s consider its limitations too to get a complete idea of whether artificial intelligence in web development can rescue or harm.
- Limited decision-making capability. Artificial intelligence is fueled by data and works only within the data array the developers used to train it. That’s why explaining the context to the machine is so difficult. Despite developers being able to deep learn the system, it still lacks broader thinking inherent to humans, and all the decisions made by the machine learning algorithm are now limited to the data available to it.
- The risk of biased data. Another significant risk and limitation of using AI for web development is that the data used for training can be biased, leading to AI making wrong or unethical decisions. Fortunately, human supervision helps mitigate this risk.
- Model size limitations. One more trick with AI for web development is that not all AI models are created equal. Not all of them take the end user specifics into account as well. For example, the size of a certain model can be rather large, which limits its usage on customers’ mobile devices.
The Most Common Problem AI Causes in Web Development
To date, the main problem web AI may cause is over-reliance on technologies, which, as we have previously researched, also have their pitfalls. That is, replacing the human mind with artificial intelligence (in its current development state) can lead to significant mistakes that affect user experience and company reputation negatively, plus lead to higher development costs.
But if we think of AI more generally, the problems it may pose become more serious. The main one is a possible threat to society, as the algorithm may be programmed to do harm. This is also the main reason why Elon Musk and others voted for putting Open AI development on hold.
Future of Web Development: Will AI Replace Software Engineers?
The future of web developers may actually feel concerning to them. On the one hand, coders, testers, and programmers are among the first jobs replaced by artificial intelligence, as stated by Business Insider. At the same time, in their recent article, this media states that AI, on the contrary, will open up more opportunities for those eager to join the tech industry. Furthermore, it will help programmers work faster and more efficiently.
So, the truth, as always, is somewhere on the verge. AI will actually cut some share of tech jobs, but not as fast as you may expect. At the same time, it will empower programmers with a powerful set of tools for making the web development process faster, more cost-effective, and better scalable at once.
In conclusion, AI in web development is a powerful tool that can help your business grow and thrive. But, just like any other new technology, there are some pitfalls to watch out for.
If you’re considering using AI for web development—or any other project—make sure you do your research and know what you’re getting into before you dive in. Once you’ve got a good handle on the risks and benefits of using AI in your business, only then should you start thinking about how it will impact your bottom line.