Feature Request: Adding user synonyms faster with the Tab key

The Problem

The current process for adding multiple synonyms to an item is very tedious:

  1. Click add synonym.
  2. Enter synonym.
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Move hand to mouse.
  5. Click add synonym.
  6. Move hand back to keyboard.
  7. Enter synonym.
  8. Press Enter.
  9. Move hand to mouse.
  10. Click add synonym.
  11. Move hand back to keyboard.
  12. Repeat steps 7–11 for each synonym.

This is slow and can lead to misclicks that delete an existing synonym.

The Solution

Let me save the current synonym and open an input element for the next one with a single button press (possibly Tab) without having to move my hand:

  1. Click add synonym.
  2. Enter synonym.
  3. Press Tab.
  4. Enter synonym.
  5. Press Tab.
  6. Repeat steps 4–5 for each synonym.

First world problems :slight_smile:


Hello Ssotoen,

Thanks a lot for the suggestion and welcome to the forums! :blush:I’ve passed this on to our engineering team and I’ll let you know what they say.

We are a fairly small team and can not always see every forum post but don’t hesitate to get in touch at hello@wanikani.com if you ever have any other questions.




I am currently able to add synonyms using Tab

  1. Click add synonym .
  2. Type synonym then press Enter
  3. Press Tab then Enter
  4. Repeat

It’s a couple more keystrokes than what you’re requesting, but it is the mouseless method you’re basically after.

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I often think about making a script with a hotkey that adds the current input as a synonym



I have actually tried doing this in the past but it never worked, which is the whole reason I made this post. Pressing EnterTab puts the focus on the next element after the synonyms, so either visually similar kanji, vocab, or a reading. Maybe this is inconsistent between browsers.


I’m using Chrome

FWIW, I’d rather not be tempted by making it too easy.

I’ve learned there’s often a reason for a particular English word to be the preferred answer for a meaning.

User synonyms are great for occasional use, and I’d hate it if the feature were removed, but I do feel it’s awfully easy to abuse (I know people have used it to add the transitive/intransitive pair for every verb, for example).

Today I answered “analyze” for (せき) (analysis), for example. I actually created a user synonym but then later thought better of it and deleted it. I’m familiar with both of the vocabulary examples (分析(ぶんせき) and 解析(かいせき). Alone, they both mean “analysis” and while, for example, 分析する means “to analyze” I think it’s beneficial to memorize the bare-word 析 character as a noun rather than a verb.

Maybe not the best example, but there have been numerous occasions where not adding a synonym aided my learning.

I know WK is specifically focused on simply “teaching to read kanji,” but I also value several incidental benefits toward my goal of better speaking, reading, and understanding Japanese:

  • The size of my vocabulary has increased.

  • I’m better able to understand the nuanced meaning behind words I thought I already “knew”.

  • I’m often able to read, hear, and understand even 熟語(じゅくご) that isn’t taught here.

  • In addition to recognition, I’m also able to produce Japanese words better. In other words, both my Japanese comprehension and my spoken Japanese have improved.

I doubt everyone will agree, but I believe forcing yourself to memorize the specific English meanings WK provides is beneficial (as long as you actually understand which specific meaning of the English word is intended — not always easy!). Memorizing those specific words will never be wrong.

I try (but often fail) to fight my urge to create a synonym unless I’m absolutely certain it makes sense. I’ve occasionally discovered I misunderstood the meaning that was intended, and adding a synonym might have made it even more confusing.

To me, mentally filing a Japanese character or vocabulary item under a subtly wrong “synonym” would detract from most if not all of these side benefits.

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Wait, how many synonyms do you add for a word, that adding this would save you a serious amount of time?

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I understand where you’re coming from, but why should I be typing English speaking world (22 keystrokes) when I could type anglosphere (10)?

I look up all the kanji in my etymological dictionary immediately after lessons, and nearly always have at least one synonym to add, sometimes several.


No argument there. That’s the kind of synonym I fully support.

My worry is with making it too easy to add lots of synonyms, not with occasionally adding them when it makes sense.

This is just my opinion, of course, but it doesn’t seem optimal to add synonyms to every kanji. There are no absolutes of course, but there’s often a reason a particular meaning is marked as “primary.”

Personally, I try to memorize and answer with the primary WK provided meaning whenever possible. I don’t even like answering with a WK provided synonym unless I’m sure I know the primary, much less with a synonym I provided.

It’s definitely not the way to go fast or improve your accuracy, but I do feel that it helps me to understand things better.

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Firefox here.

2–4 on average. I don’t really care about saving time, it’s mainly about the inconvenience of having to move my hand between every single synonym.

@Rrwrex If I wanted to make it easier I’d be using the Double-Check script.

I’m not a native English speaker, so I tend to look up most words and kanji in a dictionary in my native language and add the translations I deem appropriate as synonyms. This gives me a bit more context on how the item is used, shows me meanings Wanikani might have chosen to omit, and enables me to answer reviews in either language, which I find convenient.


That’s certainly a great usage for user synonyms, and I can understand why you’d want to make them easier to enter.

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