Mar 07 2023

Mastering ChatGPT Prompts: The New Google-Fu

In the early days of the internet, Google was a game-changer. It made finding information much easier and more efficient than ever before. However, simply using Google was not enough to gain a comparative advantage. Everyone else with an Internet connection had Google too. Only those who had figured out how to write good search terms and use operators that produced optimal results held an advantage. With the rise of ChatGPT, there is an opportunity for those who can interact with it best to hold a similar advantage. At least until, like Google, it gets so good that far less skill is required to get nearly optimal results.

Based on my initial experiments interacting with ChatGPT, right now, it does require some level of skill to get the most out of it. Asking clear and concise questions, providing context, and giving feedback on the responses can significantly improve the responses you receive.

The following tips will help get you started on improving your results with ChatGPT:

  1. Provide context: When asking a question, provide as much context as possible. It’s OK to overdo it. This helps ChatGPT better tailor your response both in style and substance.
  2. Be clear and concise: Be precise with your language to get a precise response.
  3. Provide feedback: If ChatGPT provides an inaccurate or incomplete response, you don’t need to start over if the response was close to what you wanted. It can be faster to iterate than to start over if you believe your original prompt had context and was clear.
  4. Provide expectations: If you are expecting the tl;dr version of your question, ask for that. Likewise, if you want more information, you can ask for the long-form version.
  5. Ask for references: You don’t need to blindly trust ChatGPT’s answers. If you ask, you can get a list of the sources it used to generate its answer.
  6. Practice: The more you use ChatGPT, the better you will become at interacting with it to get the results you want.

Just like with Google in the early days of the internet, those who can interact with ChatGPT effectively will be best able to leverage it.

Nick Kishfy