The Future of GIT (2020)

Original article was published on Artificial Intelligence on Medium


Prediction 1: GIT GOES USER FRIENDLY

My first prediction is going to be short and sweet. Beginners always struggle to learn git. Even people who’ve known git for 5 years+ still mess up in rebasing or changing branches and lose work along the way.

I’ll be honest, I’ve been using source control systems for almost 10 years and I only became comfortable with using git through PyCharm. It’s embarrassing but true. Without my DevOps team at the moment, I’d be lost.

Prediction 2: GIT GOES REAL TIME

The fact that git can tell you who has made what change is both a good and a bad thing. It’s good because it tells you who has done what (well, that is its purpose after all), but, it doesn’t tell you who is working on what at any point in time.

Generally speaking that isn’t a problem but often two coders can be working on the same file at the same time and this may not be a big problem, though, it would be useful to know if the functional changes that both coders are making on the same file will interfere with each other — so they don’t have to go through the awkward dance of merging their commits. It’d certainly be helpful to know if another coder is working on the same file as you, and on which branch.

Prediction 3: GIT GOES CONNECTED

Why do we do git fetch still? Why do we do git pull still? There has to be a better way.

It’s second nature for coders who actively work in a shared environment to update their repository frequently during the day but for those of us who sit in a research role or a quasi-coding position, it’s considered ‘good practise’ to update your branch regularly: but what is ‘good practise’?

In reality, it means to update it as often as the core developers would, but for those of less well read into DevOps, shouldn’t GIT take this into account? Shouldn’t it say “Hey, this code (or your project) has changed considerably, you should definitely refresh your project”? Wouldn’t that be helpful?

Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash

Prediction 4: GIT GOES DIRTY

A piece of code can be considered dirty if it’s not committed. Code which isn’t committed can often fall between the cracks if the computer shuts down or a session ends before you stash it or commit it — as it isn’t really saved anywhere but locally.

However, sometimes you don’t want to commit code because you’re not finished, and you really want to go get your lunch. What would your commit code read?

I guess this is what stashing is good for but it’d be great if git had a dirty mode, which you could switch on and it would auto-stash every few minutes to ensure that any faults in your local system were completely covered.

Prediction 5: GIT GOES AI COMMIT MESSAGE

Let’s be honest — there’s an art to writing commit messages and I have not mastered this art at all. I’m really, really bad at them.

You can even reference this post that complains about them.

I’m in two minds about this because I love reading awful commit messages but wouldn’t it be awesome if you didn’t have to write commit messages, and rather, the engine could determine what change you made and leave the notes instead?

For one, it’d probably be more informative and also it’d probably be more transparent. Further, the coder may even realise issues if the commit message has a different message to what he was expecting.