Andrew Ahn

Mastering the art of prompting on ChatGPT

To get the most out of ChatGPT, it’s a bit like life – as an anxious parent or laconic teacher probably told you after you’d failed your SATs or woke up late for school after a party: “You only get out what you put in”.

Fortunately, we’re here to help, not to judge. 

Here’s Praxi Data’s top ten tips on how to ace the art of prompting when it comes to getting the information and responses you need in the most efficient way possible from the big AI in the sky.

“So tired, tired of waiting…”

Many have praised ChatGPT’s alacritous response to queries inputted into it, so much aso that it’s threatening Google’s status as the search engine of choice.

However, to the most green of users, it can be difficult to find the information you need quickly, and perhaps most importantly of all, information that’s as correct as it can be.

You use natural language to “program” a GAI product such as ChatGPT  to generate the desired output. Here are some guidelines for crafting the most effective of prompts:

  1. Present unambiguous and succinct queries or instructions. The more explicit and precise, the better. Avoid complex inquiries and instead separate them into a sequence of simpler, interconnected questions.
  1. Cultivate an effective prompt style:
    • Use dynamic verbs. For instance, instead of “rewrite the text,” say “clarify the text.”
    • Wherever feasible, steer clear of negatives. Instead of “do not write informally,” say “write formally.”
    • Employ double quotes to highlight your emphasis. For instance: find me a “very romantic” gift for my “young” wife on her birthday.
    • Pose open-ended queries – ones without a singular definitive answer. For example: what objectives should I set for this project?
  1. Propose a role for the GAI to play. For instance: “You are a butterfly expert providing advice and addressing inquiries about butterflies.”
  1. Request a writing style such as “formal,” “entertaining,” “colorful,” or “amusing.” You can be specific and name a well-known writer.
  2. Indicate the desired response format. You can request a list, table or a plan. You could request a comparative analysis of two products based on multiple criteria. Your specification can be exhaustive and you can ask it to add criteria you have not mentioned.
  3. Provide context. When seeking information on electric bicycles, elucidate your motivation behind the inquiry. Offering examples of the expected output can also be beneficial.
  1. Understand and utilize temperature settings. Add the setting directly in the prompt.
  2. Iterate and refine: Continually adjust the prompts, steering the GAI closer to the required response.
  1. Approach prompting as a dialogue between you and the GAI. Improvements often result from iterative modifications to your prompts, parameter adjustments, or question rephrasing.
  1. Establish a Prompt Library. Retain records of all the prompts used, especially those yielding good results. Update any improved prompts in the library.

Great prompting skills are essential for enhancing productivity and output quality, however it is crucial to maintain a healthy skepticism towards GAI responses, given the prevalence of inaccurate or misleading information on the internet.

To learn more about Generative AI, ChatGPT and the future of AI, head to the Praxi Data website and discover how it will affect the way you use everything AI in the future.