Cursor is an AI-first code editor that blends traditional coding with the capabilities of artificial intelligence.
It enhances productivity and streamlines development processes with features such as AI-generated code, lint-fixing, AI assistance in a terminal, and a codebase-aware chatbot.
- Impressive AI code generation and editing capabilities.
- Extremely helpful, codebase-aware chatbot.
- Simple migration from VS Code with a one-click setup.
- Option for private code to enhance privacy.
- AI-powered debugging in the terminal and lint fixes streamline your workflow.
- Free plan.
- There could be a separate feature and keyboard shortcut for code refactoring.
- AI-generated code sometimes contains errors, such as incorrect HTML tag names.
TL;DR ~ My Quick Verdict 🤔
Cursor is a great tool that combines AI assistance with traditional coding practices, offering a more efficient and enjoyable workflow.
I believe this tool offers a complete solution for a more productive workflow, and I highly recommend giving it a try.
As a developer, you're probably spending most of your time inside a text editor. So, it's important to use the right IDE to enhance your productivity and make your work more enjoyable.
That's why I want to introduce you to Cursor, which I think is a very impressive tool.
In this review, we'll talk about:
- What makes Cursor different from other IDEs?
- How can it make you more productive with its AI-powered features?
- My personal thoughts and recommendations.
So, let's get started.
What is Cursor?
Cursor is a code editor powered by AI that provides several interesting ways to build your applications.
One of its most interesting features is the AI writer, which you can quickly access and use to generate a code snippet whenever you need it.
You can also use Cursor to edit your existing code, fix errors, and even chat with an AI chatbot with access to your codebase.
Cursor also makes it very easy to migrate from VSCode with just one click. You can import all your extensions, themes, and settings in seconds.
And if you're concerned about privacy, Cursor offers an option to keep your code completely private.
Additionally, you have the option to use the OpenAI API key instead of subscribing to a paid plan if it is more convenient for you.
Let's talk about the features of Cursor and explore the capabilities of this tool:
Write Code With AI Assistance
Cursor allows you to generate code snippets with AI inside your editor.
While other coding assistants like Copilot also offer this feature, in my opinion, Cursor provides an even more convenient way to generate code.
To get started, all you need to do is use a simple keyboard shortcut (
⌘ + K or
ctrl + K, depending on your system) to open a box where you can request the AI to generate a code.
Once the code is generated, you can either accept or decline it, kind of like resolving Git merge conflicts. You can also provide follow-up instructions to the generated code.
But that's not all - you can also try making edits to your code by selecting it and using the same command.
For example, here, I asked AI to modify a regex expression to make it match a wider range of phone numbers.
Another interesting addition to this feature is the option to use Symbols.
Symbols allow us to present our code to the AI. By simply typing
@ inside the command box, we gain access to all of our files and can ask the AI to perform tasks based on this information.
For example, you can use it to create styles similar to another component.
Chatbots are probably the most common way of interacting with AI, and Cursor also has integrated them into its platform.
The chatbot in Cursor works similarly to ChatGPT but with the added benefit of being able to access our codebase. This means that the AI can view our files and make suggestions based on the code.
To open the chatbot window, simply use the shortcut
⌘ + l. You can then ask your questions and interact with the chatbot in two ways:
- By pressing enter and allowing the AI to see only the current file.
- By using
⌘ + enterand letting AI search the entire codebase. This gives the AI access to all your files, making it easier to look for specific methods located in other files.
Obviously, this is just one of the multiple use cases of a chatbot. You can also ask it to identify bugs, simplify functions, and more.
Auto-debug is an agent designed to help you fix errors in Cursor's terminal.
Whenever you encounter an error, you can use this agent to get suggestions from the AI on how to potentially resolve the issue.
For example, if you accidentally make a typo in a filename, the agent will scan your codebase and tell you that the file does not exist. Also, it will suggest a similar file name that might be what you were looking for.
If you want to use Cursor in larger projects, you'll be happy to know that it can assist you in fixing lint errors.
Whenever you encounter any lint error, just hover over it and click on the fix button. The AI-powered assistant will provide a response that you can check and insert.
This feature is particularly useful if you're learning a new programming language and frequently encounter common errors. In my experience, the suggested messages by the AI usually work, but it's always a good idea to double-check them.
Cursor offers a free plan that comes with 50 slow GPT-4 uses and 200 GPT-3.5 uses per month, an AI-powered code editor, and private data controls.
But if you need more advanced features, there are two paid options available:
- The Pro plan begins at $16 per month and includes everything in the free plan, along with 500 fast GPT-4 uses per month, unlimited slow GPT-4 uses, and unlimited GPT-3.5 uses.
- The Business plan starts at $32 per month and includes everything in the Pro plan, as well as centralized billing and enhanced privacy options.
My Thoughts On Cursor
I must say, I am truly impressed by the capabilities of Cursor. The convenience of having an AI assistant available everywhere with access to the codebase is amazing.
The AI suggestions I got were accurate, and most of the time, AI knew exactly what changes to make without making me spend a lot of time explaining details to the chatbot.
However, the suggestions from GPT-3.5 were not as effective as those from GPT-4. This could be an issue if you're using the free version and end up running out of GPT-4 credits.
One feature that I think could be added to Cursor to make it even better is a keyboard shortcut for refactoring methods. Right now, it is possible to refactor methods, but it would be more convenient if there was a keyboard shortcut for it.
Overall, I find Cursor to be an incredibly well-made tool that simplifies the repetitive and challenging aspects of coding.
I highly recommend giving it a try.
And that's a wrap!
I really hope I was able to help you out with any questions you may have had about giving Cursor a try. Speaking from my own experience, I think it's a fantastic tool and an excellent alternative to traditional AI coding assistants.
Thanks so much for taking the time to read this - I really appreciate it!
See you 🖐