JetBrains, a renowned software development tools provider, has unveiled ReSharper 2023.2, an innovative version of its developer productivity extension for Microsoft Visual Studio. This latest release incorporates AI-powered development assistance, empowering .NET developers to enhance their coding experience and efficiency.
AI Assistant for Programming Queries
ReSharper 2023.2’s Early Access Program introduces an AI assistant, a chat interface designed specifically for programming-related queries. This AI assistant allows developers to troubleshoot, refactor code, generate snippets and documentation, as well as seek general programming guidance. By leveraging the power of AI, .NET developers using Visual Studio and ReSharper can elevate their coding capabilities
Enabling AI-Powered Features
To access the AI-powered features, users are required to log into JetBrains AI Services and enable the AI Assistant. While utilizing the AI features, relevant contextual information, such as file types, programming language, and frameworks employed, is shared with the provider of the large language model (LLM). It’s important to note that the assistant does not have access to the source code unless developers choose to include code fragments in their prompts. JetBrains also plans to support local and on-premises models, ensuring that sensitive data remains within users’ control.
Streamlined Coding with the AI Assistant
The AI assistant within ReSharper takes into account the specific programming language and technologies employed in projects, enabling it to generate properly formatted code snippets. Users have the flexibility to manually copy and paste the generated code or allow the chatbot to insert it directly into the code editor. Additionally, the assistant offers a range of helpful prompts to assist developers in getting started quickly.
Enhancing Code Understanding and Documentation
When developers include source code in their prompts, it is sent to the LLM provider, allowing the AI model to generate, explain, or document code accordingly. For instance, if a developer queries, “How can I read the values from this query?” with a specific code snippet, the assistant can provide a comprehensive explanation and suggest improvements. In this case, the assistant may refactor the code to ensure proper release of objects like connection, command, and reader, using the appropriate “using” statements.
Additional Features and Future Availability
ReSharper 2023.2 not only introduces the AI assistant but also introduces new quick-fixes and inspections for working with discard variables. Furthermore, inlay hints for LINQ queries have been added, enabling developers to debug and visualize intermediate outputs at each step of the query. It’s worth mentioning that the AI features are currently limited by the number of users and availability in certain countries where the OpenAI service is accessible. While the AI service is free during the Early Access Program, pricing details will be announced in due course. JetBrains plans to extend the AI-powered assistant to other products such as Rider and ReSharper for C++.