AI chatbots have sent shockwaves throughout the world with their rise to prevalence in recent years. Their capabilities have grown at an astonishingly rapid pace, stirring up excitement in some, and concern in others. While the doom and gloom of a potential AI overlord may be overblown or exaggerated, there are definitely implications to the rise of AI. Some have expressed concerns about jobs being replaced by AI, and some very well may. However, those who learn how to use AI to improve their own performance will be at a distinct advantage.
What are AI chatbots?
First of all, when I say AI I don’t mean Sonny from I, Robot. You know, the one with Will Smith and the motorcycle and all. Not that. ChatGPT, Google Bard, Dashy Chat. These are all predictive text chatbots. They take the instructions they are given, and simply predict the next word using the unimaginably massive library of information that is stored online.
They are not sentient beings themselves, but they are programmed to imitate sentient beings, and their logic is undeniable. They can do a pretty good job of imitating human speech and writing. So let’s explore some of the methods you can use to make sure you’re getting the most out of AI chatbots like Dashy Chat.
1. Define the parameters for your request.
Set a word or paragraph limit. Request a specific style, such as an American academic tone or business professional tone. Ask for a specific format like a 5 paragraph essay or short and succinct email. The more detail the better.
2. Be as specific as possible.
Do you want your request to be funny? Succinct? Mimicking a piece of your own writing? You need to include every little detail in order to get a useful result. Let’s take a look at a general prompt, and then a very specific one. They are the same overall request, but as you can see, the end result is quite different.
Now maybe you don't want to sound like a pirate, but I do. The point is, if you're specific, you can get whatever result you are after.
3. Let AI edit for you.
Copy and paste your own writing into the chatbot and ask for edits. Remember, be specific. Tell the chatbot to check for grammatical accuracy, or perhaps make a sentence easier to read. You can copy in your written text and use a prompt such as, “Read this paragraph, then rewrite it in a more succinct and professional style. Be specific in your editing requests and you will be rewarded.
4. Let AI read and summarize for you.
We don’t always have time to read through large pieces of text, especially when going through university. Let the AI do the heavy lifting from time to time. You can submit a website or copy and paste text, and ask the chatbot to summarize it for you. Again, be specific. You can request a bulleted list of key points to take away from an article, or request a short essay, or even request something be broken down into its thesis statement or defining point.
5. Use AI to make outlines or templates for you.
Sometimes the hardest part of writing is getting a proper format or outline of basic information to fill out. Submit a request for an outline, or request an intro, bulleted list of points, and conclusion. This sort of prompt will let you put your own words down, while still having most of the hard stuff done for you.
6. Don’t simply copy and paste your result from a chatbot request.
Once again, AI chatbots are imitating human speech and written language. You don’t know if certain sentences, paragraphs, or even essays are unique to your conversation with a chatbot. You should always use the AI outputs as guidance, not the answer. Go through your final output and make it your own, don't plagiarize.
Whether you are toiling through school or grinding through the monotony of corporate America, AI can help make your writing faster and easier. From emails to essays, AI chatbots can be a great tool. But remember, that is all that they are, a tool. You still need to know how to use them properly, and you still need to bring your own elements and thoughts to your written work. Plagiarism is still bad, and it can be easy to get complacent or lazy when you have AI there, but be certain you are using AI in a responsible manner.