What to do when a document doesn't fit in AI prompt window

No matter how big the prompt window is, it’s never long enough. We deal with the problem all the time. We ask AI to find information in a document, and it turns out that the prompt is too long. We can split the input manually into several parts, but the task gets tedious very quickly.

In this article, I show you how to automate splitting the document into smaller parts, passing them to AI, and then combining the results into a single response.

The first thing we need is a RecursiveCharacterTextSplitter. The splitter breaks the document into chunks but tries to preserve entire paragraphs. If that’s not possible, the splitter will try to maintain sentences or at least words. It won’t cut words in half unless it’s the only option to split the text.

from langchain.text_splitter import RecursiveCharacterTextSplitter

splitter = RecursiveCharacterTextSplitter(chunk_size=4000)

Next, we need the LLM implementation and a prompt template explaining to AI what to do with the text.

from langchain.llms import OpenAI
from langchain import PromptTemplate

llm = OpenAI(temperature=0, max_tokens=500, openai_api_key='sk-...')
prompt_template = PromptTemplate.from_template(
    Use the following article to answer the user's question.
    Answer by returning bullet points with relevant quotes from the article.
    Start with bullet points. Don't include any header. Don't include a footer either.

    Question: {question}


Finally, we need to create a MapReduceChain and pass the template variables to the chain:

from langchain.chains.mapreduce import MapReduceChain

chain = MapReduceChain.from_params(
      reduce_chain_kwargs={"document_variable_name": "input_text"},
      combine_chain_kwargs={"document_variable_name": "input_text"}
final_answer = chain.run(input_text=a_very_long_article, question=the_question)

That’s it. The chain will automatically split the text into smaller parts, pass them to AI, obtain the result, and combine the results into a single response.

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