Feature request: "you may be confused with ..."

During reviews, I pretty often get confused and give the wrong answer because I mix up two kanji. For example in my latest review session I got asked 周 and I answered ‘investigate’, because I mixed it up with 調. When this happens, WaniKani tells me what the right answer is, so I now know that 周 means ‘circumference’, not ‘investigate’. But I still have to look up manually which kanji is ‘investigate’ (調) because otherwise when that one comes up, I won’t know it :wink:

Now this happens to me fairly often (both with kanji and vocab). I think it would be great if, when you get an answer wrong, WaniKani would do a reverse search for what you typed, among kanji / vocab that you know already, so it can show a message like “you may be confused with 調 (investigate)”. This would be very useful for me, because looking this up manually takes a lot of time, and I often forget to do it.

What do you think?

(Sorry if this has been brought up already, I tried searching for it but searching for “confused” just returns posts from people that are confused :laughing:)


You can try my userscript for similar kanji:

Currently it is not “curated”, it probably shows more kanji than necessary. But you can add and remove entries and it also shows up during lessons and reviews.


That’s definitely useful, installed it!

But I’m looking for something that is shown during reviews, when you get an answer wrong. I often mix up kanji / vocab that are not visually similar as well, like 労働 manual labor / 苦労 hardship / 努力 great effort / 運動 exercise.

It could look something like this mockup:

(I had to fail that review just to be able to make this. Crabigator, please have mercy on me!)


I love the idea, but fear the reverse effect: the very thing you may be confused about may get even more ingrained because it is presented to you.


That definitely looks like leech squashing material …

To make that work someone will have to collect a list with “confusable things” manually, I don’t think you could do it automatically :slight_smile:


The script that allows you to review leeches might have some sort of a list already, since it tends to also give you similar kanji/words together with your actual leeches. Then it would select either the word/kanji with the meaning/reading(?) the user inserted wrong or just offer some options.



My idea would be to simply report all kanji / vocab that have the meaning that you entered. So if for the kanji 家 I answer “tree”, it would still say “maybe you are confused with 木” … even though 木 and 家 are not very confusing in general :wink:

Maybe that gives too many candidates, though?

I’m thinking about trying to make a userscript for this, it shouldn’t be too hard (famous last words in programming :roll_eyes:)

I think you’re right that it shouldn’t be too hard if you don’t get too fancy. I’d recommend matching meanings only, since reading matches are too numerous to get much signal.

  1. The API allows you to pull the list of vocab and kanji that you have learned so far.
  2. You can do string matching to pull out the list of meaning candidates that you might have confused with.
  3. Then you can insert a section into the webpage that shows the candidate terms.

You’ll probably only want this script to trigger when the details page is opened and when there’s a meaning to match against.

While I’m not against anything in this thread (I do the same thing when I get items confused), I’d be very careful that you are still able to recognize kanji/vocab individually, and not only when you see them side by side.

I saw some discussion about this in a past thread, but I can’t find it. Basically, the discussion was to be able to recognize kanji on its own (as opposed to needing to see it with all of its similar kanji before being able to recognize which is which).

Not saying that’s what’s happening here, but just be cautious =)

I think something along these lines would be a good idea as I find due to the nature of SRS I get a kanji down, usually to master/enlightened then along comes Mr similar kanji and they both end up on apprentice/guru for months.

Here’s a better idea I’ve been trying. Since there really can be one perfect solution to what people mistake what kanji for. Add what you THOUGHT the answer was in the notes so if you miss it, the notes will say “Don’t mistake this for XX” that you inserted yourself

I agree that this feature would save time from having to look up the word that you’re confused about. However,

  • As @VegasVed mentioned, it might have the effect of reinforcing confusion if it came up right away.
  • It would probably be unnecessary for most wrong answers (where we aren’t confused with a different word, but just plain old wrong for a different reason).
  • It’s easy enough after a session to look at the summary where it shows you what you answered wrong, and if you were confused about any of them, to look up the kanji you were confused with. I have a feeling that doing this work manually is better for the learning process than having it handed to you (though I don’t have any evidence to back that up).
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I’d say this would be a completely safe tool for kanji. With vocab, it could complicate, so it’d be better just to stick with the kanji, at least for now.

This is a good point. Is the development effort worth it? I don’t know, maybe.

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