GitHub's game-changing code search overhaul

Kerem Gülen
May 9, 2023

GitHub, recognizing the fact that developers tend to dedicate more time to comprehending and interpreting code than producing it, has recently launched a brand-new code search tool after years of development.

GitHub has made a long-awaited announcement regarding the general release of its freshly constructed code search feature. After providing a sneak peek towards the end of 2021, the platform has finally made it available to the public.

In addition to a newly revamped user interface that enhances developers' navigation experience, GitHub has also completely reimagined many of the background procedures. This has resulted in a more effective and efficient code search tool that is better equipped to deliver accurate results.

Revamped GitHub code search feature

According to GitHub, the updated code search feature offers a search speed that is approximately two times faster than its previous iteration. Additionally, the platform has implemented code comprehension capabilities to assist users in discovering more precise and pertinent search results.

GitHub has redesigned the code view to create a more cohesive integration of search, browsing, and navigation functions, regardless of the programming laptop one is using. This aims to provide a more seamless user experience for developers.

In conjunction with the release of the new code search tool, GitHub has published a search syntax guide. This guide is intended to assist users in understanding keyword qualifiers, slashes, and other components that can be utilized to refine search results more effectively.

GitHub's game-changing code search overhaul
Image source: Unsplash

The search engine, officially named Blackbird, was constructed using Rust and is specifically engineered to filter through vast amounts of duplicated data. It is designed to sift through a staggering 115TB of content and reduce it to a more manageable 28TB of unique content.

In Colin Merkel's, GitHub software engineer, own words: “Our goal with the new code search and code view is to enable developers to quickly find critical information scattered across their codebase, put that information into context, and ultimately make them more productive.”

According to Colin Merkel, the new code search tool is just the initial step in GitHub's plans for development. As an early adopter of artificial intelligence (AI), the platform has already integrated its Copilot X feature, which utilizes GPT-4 technology to assist developers in writing and refining code at a faster pace.


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