🟒 Zero Shot Chain of Thought | Learn Prompting: Your Guide to Communicating with AI

Lucas Charbonnier

Lucas Charbonnier

Nov 09, 2023 β€’ 4 min read


🟒 Zero Shot Chain of Thought | Learn Prompting: Your Guide to Communicating with AI

In the world of artificial intelligence, communication between humans and AI models has become increasingly important. One method that has gained attention is Zero Shot Chain of Thought (Zero-shot-CoT) prompting, which builds upon the concept of CoT prompting. This approach introduces a simple zero-shot prompt that enables AI models to generate a chain of thought that answers a given question. By appending the words "Let's think step by step." to the end of a question, LLMs (Language and Logic Models) can generate a more accurate chain of thought, leading to more precise answers.

The Zero-shot-CoT process involves two separate prompts or completions. The top bubble on the left generates a chain of thought, while the top bubble on the right takes in the output from the first prompt, including the first prompt itself, and extracts the answer from the chain of thought. This self-augmented prompt enhances the accuracy of the generated answers. Zero-shot-CoT has proven to be effective not only in improving results on arithmetic, commonsense, and symbolic reasoning tasks but also in cases where obtaining few shot examples for CoT prompting is challenging.

However, it is important to note that while Zero-shot-CoT has shown promise, it is generally not as effective as CoT prompting. CoT prompting involves providing specific examples or prompts to guide the AI model's thinking. These examples help the model generate more accurate responses by leveraging the knowledge and patterns learned from the provided prompts. Nonetheless, Zero-shot-CoT serves as a valuable alternative when obtaining such prompts is difficult.

Now, let's shift our focus to the concept of freedom and explore its different aspects. In its physical sense, freedom refers to the absence of constraints on movement and the spontaneity of action. However, in the face of natural determinism, where every phenomenon obeys natural laws, true freedom becomes limited. The determinism of nature opposes the freedom to fly or defy physical limitations.

In the political realm, freedom takes on a different meaning. It signifies independence from any form of power. A free city or a free individual obeys only their own laws and will. However, as Aristotle highlights, humans are inherently social beings, and in society, political freedom requires obedience to a law that applies equally to all. Furthermore, for true political freedom to exist, the law must represent a collective will that transcends individual selfishness and serves the common interest. In this context, a citizen willingly obeys a law that they themselves have had a hand in creating, as emphasized by Rousseau's concept of self-given laws.

Moving on to moral freedom, it encompasses the idea of being responsible for one's actions and possessing the ability to choose between good and evil, known as free will. Responsibility refers to being accountable for something before someone. One is only responsible for things within their control. True freedom lies in an independent will, acting according to one's own volition rather than the will of others. The stoics argue that a free will can withstand torture or tyranny by recognizing that freedom resides in the inner will, not in the physical body. Detaching our will from external possessions and circumstances that we have no control over is essential to remain free in the face of life's uncertainties. It is not about "doing what I want" but rather "wanting what I can."

Now that we have explored both the concept of Zero Shot Chain of Thought and the various dimensions of freedom, we can draw some actionable advice from these topics:

  • 1. Embrace the power of prompting: Just as Zero Shot Chain of Thought benefits from specific prompts to improve accuracy, humans can leverage the power of asking precise questions or providing clear instructions to AI models. By guiding the AI's thinking, we can obtain more accurate and relevant responses.
  • 2. Understand the limitations of freedom: While freedom is a fundamental human desire, it is crucial to recognize its bounds. Physical limitations, societal obligations, and moral responsibilities all shape the extent of our freedom. By understanding these limitations, we can navigate life's complexities more effectively.
  • 3. Cultivate inner freedom: The stoic philosophy highlights the importance of cultivating inner freedom by detaching our will from external circumstances. By focusing on what we can control, rather than being consumed by external factors, we can maintain a sense of freedom and autonomy in our lives.

In conclusion, Zero Shot Chain of Thought offers a valuable approach to enhance communication with AI models, providing more accurate answers through the generation of a chain of thought. While it may not be as effective as CoT prompting, it serves as a useful alternative in scenarios where obtaining specific prompts is challenging. Furthermore, exploring the different dimensions of freedom reminds us of the complex nature of this concept, encompassing physical, political, and moral aspects. By understanding the power of prompting, recognizing the limitations of freedom, and cultivating inner freedom, we can navigate the intricacies of life and AI communication more effectively.


  1. "🟒 Zero Shot Chain of Thought | Learn Prompting: Your Guide to Communicating with AI", https://learnprompting.org/docs/intermediate/zero_shot_cot (Glasp)
  2. "En quoi consiste la libertΓ© ?", https://www.annabac.com/revision-bac/en-quoi-consiste-la-liberte (Glasp)

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