GitHub Copilot Swift: What It Is and How It Works
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What is GitHub Copilot?
GitHub Copilot and Swift
GitHub is one platform you would have heard of multiple times as a tech professional. Now, it hosts generative AI technology, a work of machine learning which helps create things like text, images, and now, code. Think AI writing, drawing, and sketching tools.
GitHub is one of the biggest code hosting platforms used by developers and top iOS development companies. The perks of GitHub are endless. The version history, collaboration, and code review features are the favorite of every GitHub user. There are also others like GitHub Copilot with Swift.
GitHub is a platform that accommodates all kinds of developers and coders, from newbies to experts. This article will discuss one of the attractive features of GitHub, GitHub Copilot Swift, what it is and how you can maximize it in your project. Let's dive into what GitHub Copilot is.
What is GitHub Copilot?
GitHub is a code repository hosting platform that makes coding and project management easy for developers and non-developers. It allows users to host a public code repository for free, enabling collaboration and the use of open-source projects.
GitHub provides a cloud-based version of Git’s hosting service. It's mostly free, but as a profit company, it gains its profit from selling business-focused plans and private code repositories for teams' and organizations' privacy. Maximizing its reputation for helping developers is why GitHub launched the copilot program.
The GitHub Copilot is a feature provided by GitHub to make development and coding easier for all developers who use the platform. It's an AI pair programmer that assists with coding by providing coding suggestions in autocomplete style as you code. Amazing, right?
GitHub Copilot does this when you start typing out a code. It suggests your next line of code before you finish a line without you having to think about what to do next. Imagine how much time and energy you would save by using this feature. It's a well-thought-out and developed feature that is trained and works across all languages that you can use in a public repository.
How Does GitHub Copilot Work?
Now that you know some of the possibilities of GitHub Copilot and its appeal for developers of all levels, you’re probably wondering how it works. It's effortless to use these two ways:
- The programmer first works by writing a natural language comment in your text editor, describing what you want the code to do. The Copilot then suggests lines of code in concert with your entry.
- The second way is by starting to write the code you want to use and letting GitHub Copilot fill in the rest, autocomplete-style.
This program is able to suggest within your text editor by analyzing the context of the file you’re coding in and the language you’re using, as well as other related files. GitHub Copilot doesn’t only suggest a single word or line of code. The vast development of GitHub lets it suggest unit years, complex algorithms, complete methods, boilerplate patterns, and many other templates you may need in your coding process.
OpenAI Codex Powers GitHub Copilot
The Copilot is a new AI system created by OpenAI. Built from billions of open source code, GitHub Copilot works with popular editors like Visual Studio Code, Neovim, Visual Studio, and many others as an extension. The AI Program also gives you different styles and options to choose from. You can accept, reject or edit the coding option, which makes the feature very flexible.
You can also use GitHub Copilot as a unique method to learn a new language or framework. The program can suggest code and syntax in many languages, making it easy for beginners to use. This means you can learn how to code in a new language while coding with GitHub Copilot.
However, the quality and options of suggestions you get with GitHub Copilot are dependent on a large amount of training data and representation available for that particular language. Regardless, GitHub Copilot makes coding easier for all developers, no matter the level of experience.
Availability and Pricing of GitHub Copilot
GitHub Copilot is available with individual and personal GitHub accounts. However, it's not free. You’ll need to subscribe to a GitHub account to access it. GitHub CoPilot is priced in two ways: monthly and yearly cycles. The charge for the monthly cycle is $10 while the charge for the yearly cycle is $100.
There is also a 60-day free trial period, but you'll need to enter a payment method to activate it. However, a free GitHub subscription exists for verified teachers, students, and popular open-source repository maintainers on GitHub.
GitHub Copilot and Swift
GitHub is a widely embraced program as it works on different text editors and with different programming languages. One of the programming languages you can use GitHub Copilot with is Swift. Swift, built by Apple Inc., is a general-purpose programming language designed for developers to write fast and secure code across different platforms.
Swift’s original and main design was to serve as the programming language for the Apple operating systems like iOS, watchOS, macOS, iPadOS, and tvOS. However, as time passed, the programming language extended beyond Apple platforms. Now, you can use Swift on Linux and Windows.
How Does GitHub Copilot Work with Swift?
Swift is one of the numerous programming languages that GitHub Copilot works with. This means it's an easy aid when writing your iOS codes. There are several ways to go about using GitHub Copilot with Swift code. Some of them include the following:
Using Swift in Visual Studio Code
Visual Studio Code (VSCode) is one of the editors supported by GitHub Copilot. Its ability to support Swift language makes VSCode easy to use the CoPilot program when coding with Swift.
This is possible because Visual Studio Code supports Language Server Protocols (LSP) (a bridge that states how source code editors and servers should communicate), and Swift supports Language Server Protocols through SourceKit-LSP. This is how auto-completion support is activated for Swift language easily in Visual Studio Code.
Once you Install Node and a SourceKit-LSP extension for VSCode, your Swift program is ready to run with the GitHub Copilot integration.
Using XCode Copilot Integrations
This XCode GitHub Copilot integration is slightly more complicated as XCode has no direct integration with Copilot for now. However, you can bypass this by running the VSCode of the XCode project’s root folder simultaneously with XCode.
On VSCode, you can run Copilot and save all your code. The changes will reflect in XCode, and you can run your project on XCode. To conveniently use Copilot integrations with XCode and Swift, you would have to run VSCode and XCode simultaneously.
GitHub Copilot is a fantastic AI Pair programmer that every developer has taken advantage of recently. However, it's also important to note and remember that GitHub Copilot will only do some of the work for you as you need specific knowledge of what you're trying to produce to maximize the program. This means that even with the use of GitHub Copilot AI, you're responsible for the quality and security of your code and the code it suggests.
Luckily, the GitHub platform can help you run features that motor and improve the code quality in your project. GitHub Copilot is a program you should take advantage of for your next project for its efficiency, flexibility, and security.
And if you're open to hiring, you can hire one of the best GitHub Copilot Swift developers. Just tell us what you need via this smart brief, and you'll get a shortlist of the five best options that suit your needs in 72 hours.
Q1. Can I use GitHub Copilot in XCode?
There are currently no direct GitHub Copilot integrations for XCode editors of iOS, macOS, and other Apple Operating system developments. However, with the manual assembly of simultaneously running Visual Studio Code on the side, you can use GitHub Copilot on your XCode projects.
Q2. Is GitHub Copilot Legal?
Yes, GitHub Copilot is a legal program to use. Understandably, there’s the general fear with programs like GitHub Copilot that go with accusations of copyright infringement and intellectual property theft. However, there is no creator in GitHub Copilot, and the results of your codes are from your creative efforts alone. Additionally, GitHub Copilot suggested codes are not affected by copyright law because the products are machine-generated, making them completely legal.
Q3. Is GitHub Copilot going to be free?
No, Github Copilot isn't going to be free. It's available for the general public and on every personal GitHub account, and currently, GitHub Copilot requires a paid monthly or annual subscription. The monthly bill is $10, while the annual bill is $100. While there is a free trial period of 60 days, the only free version is available for verified open-source maintainers, students, and teachers. Also, you cannot subscribe to a plan as an organization for now as the feature isn't available, although there's a waitlist for the plan.