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Anki, anyone?

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Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Fri Mar 26, 2010 10:40 pm

Howdy again,

Has anyone used Anki (an advanced flashcard application) to study with? (I would include the link, but that is verboten)

I'm thinking about putting all the Latin verbal paradigms on it since it syncs across multiple computers and my phone.

Is it worth the time, or would I better off using paper index cards (I would need about 640 of them for all the conjugations, tenses, ...etc.)

My concern is that it uses some sort of algorithm to help you learn. Don't know if it's worth a d*** or not.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Mon Mar 29, 2010 2:38 am

I bit the bullet.

Over the weekend, I logged onto their site and created a shared deck called 'LatinConjugations'. Six hundred and twenty-five cards in the bloody thing. What a beating. I despise data entry. Especially with special key combos for macrons. I had some initial problems syncing the deck across multiple computers, but once that was resolved, it looks like it's working as expected.

In any case, I'll give it a shot and see if it helps my retention. Those of you who are just learning Latin might also be interested in it. I created it as a shared deck, so you'll be able to download it. From there, you should be able to modify it for your own purposes if it's not quite what you need.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby thesaurus » Mon Mar 29, 2010 3:23 am

I've experimented with Anki, but I've never stuck with it. I think that I would have used it more had I discovered it early on in my studies. Now that I'm somewhat established, I can't bear drilling vocabulary of any kind--I much prefer to pick it up via reading. However, its algorithm--whereby it times the frequency at which you repeat cards depending on how confident you are in your answers--seems like a great pedagogical method. I'd be interested to hear your results. I might use it for other language.

Nonnumquam programma Anki temptavi, sed numquam permanebam utens. Si prior meis in studiis id invenissem, arbitror mihi plus adjumenti adferet. Principiis linguae aliquanto doctis, me repetendarum vocabularum maxime taedet--jucundior legendo eruditio fit. At ratio programmatis, quod sibi statuit ut quò confidentius verba deligas, eò minus frequenter ea tibi ponat, optima mihi videtur. Itaque eventus tuos discere cupio. Linguis aliis cum operam dem, forsan eo utar.
Horae quidem cedunt et dies et menses et anni, nec praeteritum tempus umquam revertitur nec quid sequatur sciri potest. Quod cuique temporis ad vivendum datur, eo debet esse contentus. --Cicero, De Senectute
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Sino-Classicist » Mon Mar 29, 2010 4:11 am

I've used Anki extensively in learning Chinese. There are no conjugations and such to learn in Chinese, but Anki is so customizable that you can use it for learning pretty much anything. I have two different decks. One drills writing (Chinese is an extremely complicated writing system, as I'm sure you know), and the other contains all the sentences from my textbooks, with their audio recordings. I use the second deck for both reading and listening practice. Some cards show me the sentence text, while some play the audio. In both cases comprehension is the goal (rather than translation), so I don't include translations on the answer side of the card -- only definitions of new words.

I'm sure something like this could be set up for Latin. Maybe the sentences from the Lingua Latina books along with their recording, if you have the audio. Or really any course that includes text and audio. And I'm sure that beyond the level of textbook learning, texts from Caesar and Livy could be separated into sentences and imported to Anki along with audio recordings (I'm sure there are recordings out there). I'm sure it would make an interesting and effective approach to learning.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:00 pm

erwinsmith123 wrote:This is wonderful because we know about the Greek and Latin century.
thanks for give me more information.

[url=crapatastic URL[/url]


I see why Jeff is so concerned about spammers. erwinsmith123 can DIAF.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Hampie » Thu Apr 22, 2010 9:17 pm

I really like Anki, mainly because it’s cross platform and has over-the-Internet syncing capabilities. My discipline, though, is not as good as I would like it do be. Making new flashcards are very, very dull, and I must admit that I find reviewing them a task of great boredom too. And unless regularly used, the program and its algorithm becomes pretty much useless: its an all nothing method.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Thu Apr 22, 2010 9:51 pm

Yeah ... tedious is the word. However, I have done it every day for the last 25 days with 625 bloody note cards. Seems to be working. Of course, once I have those down completely, then you are supposed to 'reverse' the notecards and learn them that way, too. Sigh.

The syncing and tracking capabilities are the best part, I agree. I don't know so much about the algorithm - with the large amount of notecards I had, it would have taken me a month just to 'learn' them all (at 20 a day). Since I have already memorized all the conjugations, I just wanted to be able to recognize them at a glance (rather than going through the table in my mind each and every time), so I had to cheat and learn all of them at once. This, I think, mangles the algorithm.

Anyways, I told myself that if I used it for the month, I'd actually send money to the guy who designed it. Looks like I'm gonna have to write a check (or the equivalent electronic transaction).
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Jats » Fri Apr 23, 2010 2:15 am

I've used Anki for about the same length of time as you have, and I don't find it that tedious. I use it for German, but plan to use it to study Greek this summer.
If you feel like you're losing momentum, you could try the "sentence method." Basically it involves inputting entire sentences into Anki and trying to understand the sentence instead of memorizing it. That way, words are learned in context. As far as I know, the method has only been applied to modern languages, but I see no reason why it couldn't be applied to Latin and Ancient Greek. I would add links, but am not allowed to. However, some googling should find some blog posts on the subject. Just a disclaimer, I've never used the sentence method, but plan to later on since it seems very promising. Apparently, several people have raised their abilities to a high level using this method in conjunction with other techniques.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby furrykef » Wed May 05, 2010 2:17 pm

I use Anki together with Wheelock's Latin (as well as any interesting Latin expressions I come across; no doubt I'll use it with Lingua Latina, too). What I do is I put entire sentences into my cards, like this:

Latin: Labor mē vocat.
English: Work summons me.

Usually I create both "production" (English -> Latin) and "recognition" (Latin -> English) cards. Sometimes I only create one when the other is too obvious (e.g., it's much easier to remember "Labor mē vocat" is "Work summons me" than to remember it the other way around), but Latin is difficult enough that I usually need both.

Occasionally Wheelock does have very long sentences that are difficult to abridge, and on rare occasions (only a couple of times in the entire book so far; I'm on chapter 32), I don't understand the sentence even with the translation. In either case, I simply skip it; I figure if I'll really need to understand the words or grammatical involved, I'll just encounter them again in a hopefully easier context. I also skip items that are redundant because all the words and principles are in other items, but if I'm in doubt, as I often am, I throw the sentence in, so I skip very few sentences.

I never just put raw vocabulary, principal parts, etc. into my cards; I let the sentences handle all that stuff for me. Occasionally I get thrown off because maybe the preterite or past participle of a verb isn't used in the book until some chapters later and I have a heck of a time looking it up ("What the heck is 'sublatus'?"), but it's a rare problem, especially since few verbs have completely alien preterite or participial forms.

I'd say this method has worked very well, which isn't a surprise since I've long used this method with Spanish, too (though with Spanish I use production-only cards much more often, since many words and grammar structures in Spanish are easily recognized but not as easily produced.) It's sometimes difficult to read a Latin sentence even when I know all the words, but hey, it's Latin, so that's to be expected... ;)
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Wed May 05, 2010 2:47 pm

furrykef wrote:I use Anki together with Wheelock's Latin (as well as any interesting Latin expressions I come across; no doubt I'll use it with Lingua Latina, too). What I do is I put entire sentences into my cards, like this:

Latin: Labor mē vocat.
English: Work summons me.


Heh ... That's what I'm gritting my teeth over. Since I'm using Orberg's Lingua Latina, I want to think in Latin, so I am trying as hard as I can not to use a Latin/English dictionary to look up words or even translate sentences into English in my head. Sometimes, when I am struggling with a sentence, I do end up parsing it but, otherwise, it seems to be working OK. The hoped-for end result, as Mr. Dowling would say, is to be able to read Latin as easily as I read English.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Hampie » Wed May 05, 2010 3:29 pm

Smythe wrote:
furrykef wrote:I use Anki together with Wheelock's Latin (as well as any interesting Latin expressions I come across; no doubt I'll use it with Lingua Latina, too). What I do is I put entire sentences into my cards, like this:

Latin: Labor mē vocat.
English: Work summons me.


Heh ... That's what I'm gritting my teeth over. Since I'm using Orberg's Lingua Latina, I want to think in Latin, so I am trying as hard as I can not to use a Latin/English dictionary to look up words or even translate sentences into English in my head. Sometimes, when I am struggling with a sentence, I do end up parsing it but, otherwise, it seems to be working OK. The hoped-for end result, as Mr. Dowling would say, is to be able to read Latin as easily as I read English.

You could try to use the latin explanations given in LL for new words, on the back of the flashcards :O.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Wed May 05, 2010 8:11 pm

Hampie wrote:You could try to use the latin explanations given in LL for new words, on the back of the flashcards :O.


That's actually a pretty damned good idea.
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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby furrykef » Thu May 06, 2010 1:06 am

The problem in that case is you have no way to produce the sentence, only recognize it. I find that you remember words and phrases much more easily if you can produce them.

A lot of people get the idea that translating to/from English will cause them to think in English when reading or speaking a foreign language, but I've been doing it for years, with multiple foreign languages, and I have never really had that problem. The only time I end up thinking in English is when I'm not really familiar with what I'm trying to say or read in the first place. I think the benefit of being able to produce Latin sentences, not just recognize them, far outweighs the potential problems of using English.

Don't get me wrong, I like Lingua Latina and I find its Latin-only approach fascinating, but it's certainly not the only right way to learn a language. :)

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Re: Anki, anyone?

Postby Smythe » Thu May 06, 2010 3:51 am

furrykef wrote:The problem in that case is you have no way to produce the sentence, only recognize it. I find that you remember words and phrases much more easily if you can produce them.

- Kef


That, too, was a subject of debate at some point within the last month.
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