Drawing Parallels: Harness AI’s Ability to Brainstorm Analogies

Analogies are a powerful tool writers can use to make their ideas easier to understand, helping readers grasp tricky topics by relating them to things they already know.

One of the challenges of using analogies is coming up with effective ones. This can be especially difficult when you are trying to explain a complex or abstract concept.

Generative AI apps can help writers overcome this challenge by suggesting analogies.

Here are a few tips for using generative AI apps to suggest analogies for your writing:

  • Use specific and descriptive prompts. The more specific and descriptive your prompt is, the better the generative AI app will be able to generate relevant analogies.
  • Be creative and experiment. Don’t be afraid to try different prompts to see what kinds of analogies the generative AI app generates.
  • Don’t be afraid to edit or refine. Once the generative AI app has created a list of analogies, take time to evaluate and edit them to fit your content.

Let’s look at a couple examples

I asked ChatGPT to suggest analogies that I could use in two of my recent blog posts. Here are the results.

For my post describing how generative AI apps can help a writer edit their blog post to a more formal tone, ChatGPT made the following suggestion:

The Tailor of Words Analogy

Concept: Using a generative AI app to formalize your writing is like visiting a tailor who refines and adjusts your attire to make it suitable for a formal occasion.

Explanation: Imagine your draft as a raw piece of clothing, functional but not yet refined. The AI app acts like a skilled tailor who meticulously works on your attire (content), making adjustments, aligning seams, and adding finishing touches to make it look polished and elegant. It ensures the language fits the formal tone, trimming off casual phrases and fitting in more sophisticated terminology. It also guarantees that your final attire (content) is suitable and leaves a strong impression in a formal setting.

Regarding my post about how generative AI apps can suggest counterarguments to a writer’s blog post draft, Chat GPT made the following recommendation:

The Friendly Debate Partner Analogy

Concept: Having a generative AI program assist you is like having a friendly debate partner who respectfully challenges your points to help refine your argument.

Explanation: Imagine you’re preparing for a debate and have a partner to practice with (the AI app). You present your arguments, and your partner thoughtfully provides counterarguments. This isn’t to oppose you but to strengthen your position, allowing you to consider different perspectives and refine your points for a more robust and well-rounded presentation. In the same way, AI offers counterarguments to your blog post’s points, helping you foresee potential criticism and present a more thorough and resilient argument. It’s like having a constructive sparring session in a supportive environment to prepare you for the actual debate (or, in your case, the public reception of your blog post).

Generative AI can be a valuable tool for writers who want to use analogies more effectively in their writing. By following the tips above, writers can use these apps to generate analogies that are relevant, engaging, and effective at communicating complex concepts to their readers.


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