ChatGPT can't count

Today I needed 55 of the letter M on one line, to help size a column of text for a design I’m working on. This seemed like an excellent use for an LLM such as ChatGPT.

User: in one line, type the letter M 55 times


Nice! I pasted the Ms into Sublime Text to verify. ST counted 53 characters. What?

User: that is only 53 Ms

ChatGPT: Apologies for the oversight.


That’s 54 Ms. Progress, but still not there. I tried twice more (I counted):

User: that is 54 Ms

ChatGPT: I apologize once again for the mistake.


User: that is 58 characters, I asked for 55

ChatGPT: I apologize for the inconsistency. Here’s the correct response with 55 characters:


The final count of Ms was 54 (again). I took it and added one more M. But wow, what I thought would be a quick little use case ended up being 4 tries and a blog post. Mmm.