ChatGPT to accurately answer coding queries

OpenAI has partnered with Stack Overflow to enhance ChatGPT’s responses to coding queries

Martin Crowley
May 7, 2024

OpenAI has announced a collaboration with Stack Overflow–a Q&A forum and go-to platform for software developers–to bring more technical information to ChatGPT and improve its responses to programming-related questions.

Details of the partnership between OpenAI and Stack Overflow

Both OpenAI and Stack Overflow will benefit from this partnership:

OpenAI will have access to Stack Overflow’s massive dataset, which is full of coding and developer knowledge and feedback, that it can use to train its GPT large language models, providing better, more accurate, and helpful responses for developers using ChatGPT to get technical, programming, or coding help.  

Stack Overflow, in turn, will be properly attributed (with linked content) in any ChatGPT response that uses its data. It will also utilize OpenAI’s GPT models to add AI-powered natural language search to ‘Overflow AI’, its AI-powered conversational search tool, and benefit from OpenAI’s expertise in AI integration.

Although they haven't revealed exactly what features and integration they plan to roll out first, it's expected that Stack Overflow will launch its first set of OpenAI-powered AI features in June this year.

Stacks' partnership with OpenAI follows a similar partnership with Google, which allows Gemini for Google Cloud users to get coding suggestions directly from Stack Overflow.

Potential concerns over the partnership

In July last year, Stack Overflow launched Overflow AI allowing its users to ask questions and get answers from over 58M programming-related questions and answers. This caused an uproar among Stack’s developer community, with many concerned about the validity and accuracy of the AI-generated information, and data privacy for individual contributors.

Stack Overflow even temporarily banned responses from ChatGPT due to concerns about low-quality responses. Since then, they’ve seemingly decided to do a U-turn, choosing to embrace it rather than ban it: With an “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” attitude. But questions still remain as to how they plan to validate answers and protect contributors.

Why Stack Overflow has formed this partnership with OpenAI

While Stack Overflow has always been a popular platform for developers to get answers to their coding questions, they were forced to lay off 28% of its workforce in October. While no reason was given for this, speculation is rising that it was due to the rise of AI-assisted coding. So, this partnership with OpenAI, despite previously preventing the model from contributing to its platform, feels like a strategic move, from Stack, to adapt to the changing technological landscape and maintain its position as a valuable resource for developers, by integrating the power of AI.

“Stack Overflow is the world’s largest developer community. Through [our] industry-leading partnership with OpenAI, we strive to redefine the developer experience, fostering efficiency and collaboration through the power of community, best-in-class data, and AI experiences.” – Prashanth Chandrasekar, CEO of Stack Overflow