Under the hood of GitLab Duo Chat: What can users expect?

The GitLab logo on a smartphone in front of a background of data
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GitLab has announced the launch of a new natural language AI assistant, GitLab Duo Chat, as the firm looks to simplify processes for DevSecOps teams. 

As the name might suggest, Duo Chat will provide developers AI with more context rich, intuitive features through its GitLab Duo service. 

The AI assistant will provide users with real-time guidance, insights, and suggestions to help analyze code more efficiently through natural language inputs, GitLab said.

The chatbot is capable of identifying and fixing security issues across the development lifecycle, can provide automated troubleshooting for CI/CD pipeline failures, and assist developers with project planning.

GitLab Duo Chat is currently available in beta. General availability of the AI assistant will be rolled out to Ultimate tier members in December, the company confirmed. 

David DeSanto, chief product officer at GitLab said the introduction of the chatbot will help developers effectively harness AI “beyond just code creation”. 

“To realize AI’s full potential, it needs to be embedded across the software development lifecycle, allowing DevSecOps teams to benefit from boosts to security, efficiency, and collaboration,” he said. 

Duo Chat will also be included in GitLab’s Web IDE and Workflow extension for VS code as an experimental release. This integration will bring features such as test generation and code explanation.


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This announcement follows GitLab’s launch of the Duo Suite of AI-assisted capabilities earlier in 2023 and promises to revolutionize DevSecOps.

In its Global DevSecOps Report, GitLab found that 83% of respondents said implementing AI in their software development process is “essential to avoid falling behind”.

Survey respondents ranked chatbots among their top three most impactful AI use cases.

Users of all levels of expertise can expect real-time support and productivity enhancements through the suite, such as the automation of mundane repetitive tasks, explaining unfamiliar code, generating code, instant issue summaries, and more general advice on how to use GitLab.

Although it had previously partnered with Google on AI features such as inline code completion, the backend of Duo Chat will rely on Anthropic’s Claude-2 large language model (LLM). 

The firm’s decision to partner with Oracle on their cloud-based GPUs demonstrates GitLab is open to making use of a number of cloud services depending on the use-case.

GitLab added that Duo Chat will not be trained using any proprietary code or inputs, which includes both the prompt and the output of the chatbot.

The market for AI coding assistants is booming

The launch of GitLab Duo Chat comes hot on the heels of GitHub unveiling the enterprise tier of its own pair programming assistant Copilot, which leverages an organization's internal codebase to provide tailored coding tips and document summaries.

Amazon also revealed the enterprise tier of its CodeWhisperer AI assistant with a similar feature set in September 2023. 

Google, meanwhile, is not far behind with DuetAI set to offer enterprise-focused customization features in the future.

Solomon Klappholz
Staff Writer

Solomon Klappholz is a Staff Writer at ITPro. He has experience writing about the technologies that facilitate industrial manufacturing which led to him developing a particular interest in IT regulation, industrial infrastructure applications, and machine learning.