I think it should be easier to customize the look of a deck and add cards with more information.
Being able to add cards fast via the dictionary is nice, but the options are too limited in my opinion. I think there should be a more accessible way of adding cards with more info on custom decks (and creating custom decks )
I really like kitsun for its ease of use, but it feels limited in places like this compared to Anki. And if I were to add cards with more information it would be a way more manual process than it would be with Anki.
One can make the argument: “just learn html”, but I’d rather use that time studying what I’m actually utilizing kitsun for in the first place.
Again, I really like the ease of use aspect of kitsun, and I think kitsun would be an even stronger competitor to anki if it’s deck customization tools were more powerful and accessible.
I’ll end with an example of what I mean by limited customization (accessible customization). Lots of fields, but few things to fill them with.
The fields related to kana can also be avoided. You have 2 options for those:
When the answer is the JP word, type the word with caps lock on and it will give you katakana.
For Katakana words, you can also have a hiragana version of the katakana word in the readings. A lot of words like onomatopoeias already have this, since they’re found written in both katakana and hiragana.
Let me know if this helps with what you’re looking for
EDIT: Or did you mean something different than what I mention above? As in, that specific template you selected has lots of fields to fill in, but the dictionary tool can only fill some of them.
I’m looking for the ability to automate the process of making cards that look like the Hinekidori template. What kitsun already provides is certainly more than functional, but I think it would be great if it could afford some customization and automation that doesn’t require me to dive into HTML.
It’s a nice idea, kinda like an interactive platform that takes no html experience. In the short-term, expanding the number of templates and layouts in the community center for more options would be great, though everything here are by Kitsun users only. I noticed every time I have imported an Anki deck, that template becomes available as default in card generation. Perhaps those familiar could share sources for template upload too.
Yes, that would be amazing. Kitsun’s best feature is its organized look and style. It’s an alternate to anki in the way that it’s more simple and readable. I think the way that card and deck generation is handled currently is kinda contrary to that.
It’s alluring to the people that dislikes anki for it’s steep learning curve and complexity, but at the same time making cards is just as complex. Sure, you can stick with the default template, but that is very restricting.
I’m afraid I don’t quite follow what you are trying to convey.
With the dictionary tool you can already use the custom flow to set up a card generation process using the templates and layouts you prefer. In the screenshot you seem to be using Hinekidori’s template, which has a huge amount of fields, how would you want this to be filled up?
Or are you talking about creating layouts without having to know css and html? I’ve previously toyed around with creating a visual card editor, but as you can imagine that is a huge feature to create (I actually create website/magazine editor programs at my dayjob, so I’m speaking from experience ).
I do agree that layouts are kind of a sore thumb for the regular users, as they are difficult to customize without having coding knowledge. I’ve often considered creating a system which does away with fully customized html/css layouts in order to focus down on more exclusive features (card UI being “baked” into the website means I can let you freely customize it through settings).
In fact, this is something I’d still love to do, but at the same time it would break with the existing content/layouts and take away the complete customization thats available for users who know how to code.
It would also really ease things up on the backend side of things (dynamic everything is difficult to query), but yeah…
Not sure if that’s what you were getting at, sorry if it went completely offtopic
There are two features I think should be improved that would greatly improve the casual Kitsun experience. Making cards quickly with a variety of options and being able to customize layouts to some degree.
I like the dictionary feature, but I think there’s not enough content available to fill the fields with. I think automation is a really important feature when creating cards, and if I want a more detailed card I have to fill it manually currently (which is not practical given that I have to create hundreds of cards.) I’d be happy with sticking to the Hinekidori template as long as I could automate the creation of cards through the dictionary. I think the information that’s in the Hinekidori decks are a good template for what should be automated through the dictionary.
There are really two things to customize about decks, and one is way more important than the other. Information and aesthetics. How it looks aesthetically is not as important, but it would still be nice to be able to customize that as well. If you only have time to focus on one, it should definitely be how one can easily make an organized deck with useful information.
Isn’t it possible to have some sort of building blocks system of pre-coded HTML? Instead of changing the whole system, you could try translating HTML into something readable to the inexperienced; maybe it would be possible to have a variety of building blocks that the user can piece together.
Kinda like the blueprint system in unreal (of course way less advanced). I have little experience with coding, so sorry if this sounds unrealistic!
I don’t think most people care about excessive customization, but I think most people would like to have some access to customization.
I think it’s especially important to improve the ease of use of Kitsun’s main feature (Decks) if you’re planning to release a mobile version; as the tolerance for the barrier of entry is way smaller for the mobile crowd of users.
One final thing:
I think the separation of layouts and templates is somewhat confusing. It’s hard to understand how they relate to each other and what they actually do. Maybe it’s super simple, but there’s no clear tutorial on how it works so I don’t know. It’s kinda like throwing a powerful tool at someone and they have to find out how it works through research, which I think is the wrong approach for kitsun.
I think the community decks page would have way more content if you managed to streamline the process of making decks. So I think it would improve Kitsun greatly if you managed to do so. Not only would the average user be able to create their own decks, but more people would probably share them too.
And I have to add one thing that I’ve noticed recently. I want to add an extra field to the “Default kitsun vocab” layout so that I can add images to my cards, but I can’t add an extra field unless I duplicate the template first. That’s pretty inconvenient because I’d then have to convert a bunch of cards over to the new template. Which is kinda scary, since if something goes wrong I can’t recover those cards.
That’s what I think should be improved at least. Decks are really the core of Kitsun, so I think it’s an important feature to improve before all else. I really think you’ve done a great job on Kitsun and I like the look of the site.
The data returned is all the data that I can get from the Jisho.org API. Hine’s template has a lot of redundant fields (imo) as one field can serve the purpose of many in his template. This is a by-product from his template being ported from Anki.
Looking at the cards in the 10k deck, you can see that many fields are not filled in to begin with:
I think what isn’t being filled out are example sentences, audio (it does for the default card generation) and frequency? The rest of the info can already be matched accordingly I think?
Are these the fields you were hinting at? Fields like Alternative X are not needed. Kitsun can do the same with just one field if the layout supports it.
Once you set up a custom creation flow through the dictionary once (Aka matching the fields), it will remember it through cookies for the next time. This should make it so that you don’t need to match fields anymore and can just click on the “next” button.
That’s pretty much what I was hinting at in the previous post. A visual layout editor would be a pretty huge feature to add. Just making building blocks to generate a layout would be okay to do, but Kitsun has a large amount of layout options (just think of all the different inputs for different languages) and before you know it you want to be able to change the color of X, change the border of Y, change the default input placeholder text, change the border-radius for rounded containers and so on. You’d get a large list of settings per element and the visual editor will grow way out of scope soon.
As I currently create these types of editors for a living, I can assure you that it takes a lot of time to deliver something that works well. If you go online and search for these types of editors (websites, magazines, emails etc) you will find that these products are usually the only product they offer. I think it would quickly grow out of scope for Kitsun as a learning platform.
That said, the only other way I see this happening is by baking the default layouts into the UI, making them dynamically change based on your fields (e.g. field 20 just gets added below field 19) and letting you toggle them on and off in some sort of settings page. But this as well would soon
Separation of layouts and templates:
Agreed. It’s a pretty difficult concept for new users of Kitsun to wrap their heads around. We have interactive tutorial widgets written already, currently waiting for implementation. I’d like to start with this as soon as the mobile apps get released.
I think you hit the nail on the head with some of these comments, and I’m aware of some of the issues, but it’s difficult to find a good balance between being able to customize everything through code (for power-users), streamlining the processes and making everything work on the backend. These issues are definitely on the radar though, so stay tuned
Thanks again for the feedback, really appreciated!
I think I might have found a way simpler solution though:
I’ve managed to make some customizations to a deck. It wasn’t very difficult to do minor stuff, but the problem is that there’s a lot of different code I have to look up. I think customization would come a long way with tutorials and documentation.
It wouldn’t have to go in-depth at all either. This changes font size, and this “color” etc. The way I customized it was actually by just looking at your code from the default deck and tweaking it, and see what it affected (The image you see is actually an imported Anki deck, so it had no customization). Imagine having an overview of example code with explanations. I think most people can figure out the basic structure of the editor of Kitsun I think, the problem is the code and what it does.
It would probably also make it easier to understand by moving templates to the layout editor; to show that it is very much related to each other. The separation of them makes it seem like two different things to the casual user and makes customizing more confusing.
I also managed to change the color of things by using an HTML color picker website. I think a good solution would be having a small list of example colors with their HEX code under them.
Just wanted to share my experience after trying to do some customizing without much HTML knowledge, and what I believe could make it easier. I hope it helps!