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  • Writer's pictureCale Hollingsworth

Beyond Prompt Engineering: The Power of Problem Formulation in AI

Prompt Engineering is a buzzword that has stormed the AI world. It's all about optimizing textual input to effectively communicate with large language models. From being hailed by the World Economic Forum as the number one "job of the future," to OpenAI's CEO characterizing it as an "amazingly high-leveraged skill," prompt engineering has indeed gained a lot of attention. With the rise of social media influencers showcasing "magic prompts" and pledging impressive results, it's easy to get caught up in the hype​.

But is prompt engineering the be-all and end-all in the AI world? At Modular Technology Group, we believe there's something equally, if not more important: Problem Formulation.

Problem Formulation is the ability to identify, analyze, and delineate problems. It's a skill that endures and adapts, enabling us to harness the potential of generative AI in a more effective way. While prompt engineering focuses on asking the perfect question to AI, problem formulation is about understanding the problem you're trying to solve.

Let's take a closer look at these two concepts with some examples.

Prompt Engineering: A Powerful Tool

Imagine you're using an AI model like GPT-3 to generate a sales report. You might use prompt engineering to carefully craft a command like "Generate a detailed sales report for Q1 2023, including total revenue, top-performing products, and sales trend analysis." The AI would then return a comprehensive report based on your prompt.

Problem Formulation: The Key to AI Success

Now, let's consider problem formulation. Instead of focusing on the prompt, we first need to understand the business problem we're trying to solve. In this case, perhaps the issue is not just about generating a sales report, but understanding why sales for a certain product are decreasing.

In this scenario, you might instruct the AI to "Analyze the sales data for Q1 2023 and identify any products with significantly decreased sales. Provide insights into possible reasons for the decrease." This approach ensures that the AI's output is aligned with the real business problem you're trying to solve.

The real magic happens when we combine these two skills. Using prompt engineering to ask the right questions and problem formulation to ensure we're addressing the right issues, we can harness the full potential of AI. That's what we do at Modular Technology Group.

We believe in not just asking better questions, but in understanding your business problems better. We're here to guide you every step of the way, from identifying and analyzing your challenges to crafting the perfect prompts for your AI tools.

So, are you ready to move beyond the hype and unlock the real power of AI? Let's navigate the future, together.

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