While AI models like OpenAI’s ChatGPT are undoubtedly useful, they have a tendency from time to time to actually misinform, a problem commonly referred to as “hallucinations.”
Hallucinations occur because AI models are trained on a relatively small data set that could potentially be incorrect or skewed. However, there are some things you can do to reduce the chances of this happening.
1. Use simple, direct language
When you use simple prompts, you reduce the likelihood that the AI model will misinterpret your input. So, make sure your suggestions are clear, direct, and easy to understand.
Writing a complicated prompt with a bunch of unnecessary detail led ChatGPT to misinterpret the question and share tips on the best way to shop for winter clothing.
Conversely, using a simpler, more direct prompt resulted in a more accurate and helpful response.
It’s best to double-read your request to make sure it’s focused on the goal you want. If you think your input includes unnecessary details or convoluted sentences, correct them to get an accurate answer and prevent the AI tool from hallucinating.
2. Incorporate context into your prompts
Giving the AI tool some context in your prompt can help it generate a more accurate response. Context helps narrow down potential possibilities and encourages the AI platform to consider a more specific approach when responding to your request.
For example, instead of asking an AI chatbot to share tips on investing money, you could type the following prompt, which includes enough context:
“I am a risk-averse investor looking to build capital over the next few decades for a long-term financial goal. Considering my risk tolerance and investment objective, can you share some asset classes I might consider investing in?
You could make this tip more specific by adding details like your age, income, and desired rate of capital growth over the next few years. This level of specificity will help the AI model understand your unique situation and preferences and provide a response more in line with your expectations.
3. Refine your suggestions
If you’ve noticed that the AI tool you’re using is generating incorrect or biased responses, try adjusting your suggestions. By refining your suggestions and providing clearer instructions, you’re more likely to get a relevant response.
For example, instead of asking for weight loss tips that might result in vague and sometimes incorrect answers, you could change your request to “Give me some evidence-based weight loss strategies.” This focused approach could help you gain valuable insights from the AI chatbot.
If you’ve ever had an AI chatbot generate inaccurate or problematic responses, consider sharing your feedback with the developers. Over time, feedback like yours can help developers improve the underlying model.
4. Change the temperature
A lower temperature (how a chatbot operates) helps generate a more accurate result, while a higher one could increase the randomness of the response. If you’re looking for fact-based answers, be sure to use the lowest heat setting, for a less creative and more analytical answer.
However, if you are, for example, brainstorming ideas or looking for humorous answers, increasing the temperature could work in your favor. Keep in mind, however, that the increase in temperature could cause the AI model to generate hallucinatory responses.
In the example below, you’ll notice that ChatGPT’s response to a simple prompt was pretty “creative” at a temperature of three.
Use the best AI chatbot for better results
Even the best AI models occasionally spit out facts that are just plain wrong. That said, it is important to verify every detail and statistic generated by a chatbot before accepting it as true.
It’s also a good idea to test different AI models and choose one that can generate the most accurate answers, especially if you’re using these tools for critical tasks or decision-making purposes.
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