January 23, 2020 | By Webandcrafts
AI & Machine Learning : Impact on Front-End Development
Since Websites reflect a brand’s identity, it has become an essential and unavoidable part of every business. Developing an appealing and engaging website has been the challenge most developers had to face in their career. From creating the designs to making the website bug free, front-end development was indeed challenging. It will take months to develop a website, make it free from bugs after repeated rounds of testing and make it live finally.
Of late AI and Machine learning technologies have made things easier for developers. Everyone believed that front-end development is an area which won’t be affected by AI. Modern technologies like Machine learning and AI are bringing in the much-needed changes to the front-end development process. Around 80% of the company believes in smartly investing in AI and it is believed that by 2021, AI tools will create $2.9 trillion in business. Before moving into how AI will impact front-end development, let’s have a look at what exactly front-end development means.
What Does Front-end Development Mean?
What is Artificial Intelligence?
There are a lot of misconceptions associated with the term artificial intelligence and machine learning. Machine learning and deep learning are subsets of AI. AI, in short, can be defined as the ability of a computer to behave or function just like a human. Machine learning, on the other hand, is the study of various data and later using their learning to make crucial decisions. The relation between AI and machine learning is that machine learning is a way to achieve AI.
Role of AI in front-end web development
Technology is changing at a rapid pace and surviving in this competitive industry; you need to adapt to the new technologies very quickly. From static websites to a dynamic website, to the use of chatbots in the website, the front-end web development has come a long way. Even if there are lots of technology-wise changes happening in front-end development, it cannot be completely automated. Front-end development requires careful use of various tools or platforms by skilled developers to create an engaging and appealing website. Importance of AI in front-end development comes in the fact that AI can be used to automate repetitive tasks that occur as a part of the front-end development cycle.
Following are some of the benefits of making use of AI technologies in the front-end development process.
1. AI can be used to reduce developers’ workload at the same time, improving the productivity of the developers. Recently Microsoft introduced a tool named sketch2code. Sketch2code uses AI technology to convert handwritten drawings to working HTML prototypes. Designers can use a whiteboard to share their idea, which is then automatically converted to an HTML prototype. Computer vision is used by Microsoft to understand what the designer has drawn and converts it into an HTML code. The model gets trained by using computer vision to detect HTML objects, then uses text recognition to detect any handwritten texts. Objects and texts are then combined to form the correct HTML snippet. To manually do the same process, it takes a lot of time and causes delays in the front-end development process. A tool such as sketch2Code is very much helpful for developers who spend hours on developing containers by themselves. Imagine the benefit of having a tool that reduces the workload on developers to a great extent.
2. Along with developing websites, equal or more time is spent in finding and fixing the bugs. Automating the testing process with AI can bring in a much-needed change in the industry. AI can be used to find successful testing methods, quick fixing of bugs, thereby, increasing the standard of development. Even AI can even be used to detect bugs which no other compiler can detect. Microsoft research lab is working on such a model which can detect the bug. The only thing you have to do is provide a small description of the problem, and the model will write a few lines of code and will try to solve the said problem by itself.
3. User experience is the most crucial factor every front-end developer will be keeping in mind while developing a web page. Of late you might have seen live chat facility availability on almost all the websites. The moment you ask any queries, you will get a solution for that the same moment. Chatbots have been integrated into websites to improve the experience of customers on the site. Chatbots have been useful in making the communication process more comfortable. Machines can even decrypt human emotions, thereby making communication look natural. Users will find it easier to interact with websites in the coming years without any barriers.
The main question that arises in the mind of everyone who reads the post would be, whether artificial intelligence and machine learning could replace front-end developers in the coming years?
As mentioned earlier, machine learning is the study of various data and later using their learning to make crucial decisions. Machines need to use the codes already written by the developers for the learning purpose. Developers will always have to provide the input first so that models can learn from that. AI tools such as sketch2code can create HTML prototypes, but the ability of such tools to create animations and client-side interactivity remains as a question. Static things which can be developed by using HTML and CSS can be done using AI technologies. Other than that, front-end development is not just limited to building UI only. There is still a lot of work left to do, communicating with the API, building out the model, and so on needs the expertise of a skilled developer.
Innovation is happening, and technology is changing at a high pace. As artificial intelligence is becoming more popular and common, these technologies are expected to find use in every aspect of our life. There is no doubt in the fact that AI can make the life of front-end developers simple by automating repetitive tasks. Whether AI will be able to think beyond humans and start developing self-improving applications remains as one of the biggest questions that need to be answered in the years to come. We hope this write up gave you a brief idea about what are the impacts of AI on front-end development at present and in the coming years.
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