Artificial intelligence has taught itself to create its own encryption and produced its own universal ‘language’. Now it’s writing its own code using similar techniques to humans.
A neural network, called DeepCoder, developed by Microsoft and University of Cambridge computer scientists, has learnt how to write programs without a prior knowledge of code.
First reported by the New Scientist, the system works by taking lines of code from existing programs and combining them.
The system is only able to produce short, five-line, pieces of code at present but this has been enough to test it against real-world problems used by trainee developers. “We have found several problems in real online programming challenges that can be solved with a program in our language,” the research paper says.
The authors add that they have “made significant progress” in being able to solve online programming competition problems. For example, the system was able to create a program that could compare two people’s exam results and count how many questions one person got more marks on than the others.
Within the work, the researchers decided a programming language such as Python or C++ was too complex due to the array of options possible within them. Instead, they focused on Domain Specific Languages, which are more closed-off and specific to the desired outcome. The team says its DSL is “loosely inspired” by the SQL or LINQ languages.