Regular Expression Puzzles and AI Coding Assistants: 24 Puzzles Solved by the Author, with and Without Assistance from Copilot, Chatgpt and More

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4Learn how AI-assisted coding using ChatGPT and GitHub Copilot can dramatically increase your productivity (and fun) in writing regular expressions and other programmes.

"How these tools can be both so very amazing in what they produce, and simultaneously so utterly doltish in their numerous failures, is the main thing this book tries to understand. For reasons I attempt to elucidate throughout, of all the domains of computer programming, games with regular expressions are particularly well suited for getting a grasp on the peculiar behaviors of AI."
From the Preface

For programmers of any experience level - no experience with AI coding tools is required.

Regular Expression Puzzles and AI Coding Assistants is the story of two competitors. On the one side is David Mertz, an expert programmer and the author of the Web's most popular Regex tutorial. On the other are the AI powerhouse coding assistants, GitHub Copilot and OpenAI ChatGPT.

Here's how the contest works: David invents 24 Regex problems he calls puzzles and shows you how to tackle each one. When he's done he has Copilot and ChatGPT work the same puzzles. What they produce intrigues him. Which side is likelier to get it right? Which will write simple and elegant code? Which one makes the smartest use of lesser-known Regex library features? Read the book to find out.

David also offers AI best practices, showing how smart prompts return better results. By the end, you'll be a master at solving your own Regex puzzles, whether you use AI or not.

About the technology

Ground-breaking large language model research from OpenAI, Google, Amazon, and others, have transformed expectations of machine-generated software. But how do these AI assistants, like ChatGPT and GitHub Copilot, measure up against regular expressions--a workhorse technology for developers used to describe, find, and manipulate patterns in the text? Regular expressions are compact, complex, and subtle. Will AI assistants handle the challenge?

Manning Publications