SCRIBE prompting

Generative AI prompting 101.

There’s a lot written about how to prompt AI, especially chatbots and text-to-image generators. But I haven’t seen a ton targeted at beginners, or those who have relied on intuition…so I wrote something.

This is a small sliver of a broader ‘AI Literacy’ course I’m putting together and for a limited time offering free, personalized instruction on. (Book a slot below)

When writing prompts, you can remember the key concepts with the acronym SCRIBE. (Scribe is an old-fashioned word for a writer, in case that helps you remember).

S and C stand for SPECIFIC and CLEAR. Use good writing skills to say exactly what you mean, in a way that won’t be misunderstood.

R is for ROLE. Many models are trained to respond to being assigned a role in the prompt, for example “You are a world class marketing advisor…”

I is for INTRODUCTION. Take the time to set the stage for your request, including any helpful data, examples, or assumptions.

B is for BLOCKS. Think about ways to re-use a prompt; organize longer ones into blocks, using whitespace or characters like { and } to separate the parts that change from the parts that don’t. In time you’ll assemble a personal library of useful prompts.

E is for the END-RESULT. Conclude the prompt with a (Specific! Clear!) request for how you want the data returned–a list of fifteen things, a table with the following columns, JSON data, etc.

If you craft a prompt using the skills and background knowledge that only you can put together, you’ll the an answer that only you can receive.

This is just a taste. There are many other more advanced prompting techniques for those who progress past the beginner stage. For more like this, sign up for the Problem Solvers Digest.

This post 100% human-written.