Learn Japanese with Benkyô 🥳

Hi everybody !


I’ve been developing an app recently to learn Japanese. Currently, it will allows you to create SRS cards thanks to Jisho API (https://jisho.org/) in decks and share them with the community (if you would like to of course!). It’s only available in the Play Store for I don’t own an Apple license yet, but feel free to participate in this project if you would like to see it on iPhone (my code is already cross platform :slight_smile: ).

Don’t be surprised to see an empty lesson tab or two french translations if your preferred language is French (I’ve just wanted to try internationalization :sweat_smile: ) and the mic permission (it will be developed in the A lot of sentences → creating dialogs paragraph).

However, I intend to do so much more…

In development


Obviously, I am more of a back end guy than a front end one and any help with design is welcome :pray:

Lessons created by users

I am currently trying to create a simplified way for user to upload lessons through a website form accepting markdown. This way, users will be able to participate in creating new learning material ! Of course, this will go with a certain degree of trust (each user will have a sort of badge giving some credibility to his courses depending on users’ feedbacks). My final goal would be to have a badge for real japanese teachers who would like to volunteer in offering japanese learning material or maybe even offering courses but only in exchange of money.

A lot of sentences

I’ve fed my database with 192 000 sentences with most of them having an english translation thanks to Tatoeba (https://tatoeba.org/). I am working on organising this data to make something useful out of it. I thought of:

  • using it to create gap-fill sentences for grammar point
  • asking to fully rewrite the japanese sentence from the english translation
  • ordering sentences by level of complexity (currently only taking into account kanji levels and taking the most difficult kanji level to be the level of the whole sentence), but I am planning on something to ameliorate this (feel free to ask me about it!)
  • creating dialogs. Here comes the big challenge: I dream of being able to either create immediately themes based on sentences using non-supervised machine learning or, by creating at least 10 pre-defined themes with huge amount of lexical field words to categorise sentences and create dialogs thanks to these sentences.

A website
My app is currently using Symfony has a Back End API Endpoint and Flutter. Everything is set to create a website later :slight_smile: I will surely use my current draft website (https://jpec.netlify.com/) where you can find for now some draft articles and an hiragana recognizer lacking some data to be accurate :stuck_out_tongue:

I will be really happy to have some feedbacks !

I hope they won’t be too much errors (only one I can think of for now but not really important and I will quickly see if someone find it) and the fact that you must have an account to do something on the app…

If you think this project is cool, consider donating and I will maybe cover the server cost and pay the iOs License finally :confetti_ball:



why did you choose ô instead ō? i don’t know how ô would be pronounced but wouldn’t it make more sense to be ō since べんきょう is pronounced flat?

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Hey ! Simply because I didn’t know how to make one and I don’t think I will keep this name later :slight_smile: There is no reason behind it


Yeah, O-macron is really annoying to type. I’m not even sure you actually can do it in regular Windows - it certaintly doesn’t seem to have a valid Alt code. The instructions for typing it on Wikipedia involve installing a different keyboard altogether.


Hey, this looks interesting! Even just now I was thinking again how I can’t access the list of words I’ve looked up on jisho.org, even though I made an account. What does the account even allow you to do :thinking:

So it automatically turns your lookups into flashcards to study on an SRS schedule? Sounds coolio! Edit: Oh wait, it doesn’t. How do I add words? Probably need to start a deck first, then add words to that? Edit: Yep, that’s how it works!

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Yes ! Exactly ! I should have made a sort of tutorial to explain, it’s not clear enough you are totally right. :thinking: By this way, you will create a “unit of learning” for something. For instance, if you read Pokemon a lot, you will create a deck “pokemon” where you add words related to the manga or you encounter in it. You can then share it with everyone.
If you participate in any kind of reading group, it could be helpful :wink:
I will soon add a way to upload a cover image for deck :slight_smile:

Oh and btw thank you for trying Benkyô !

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Just as an aside, there’s already an app called Benkyou that uses the WaniKani API to allow for Anki-style studying that doesn’t affect your review SRS intervals. You may want to consider a name change sooner rather than later to avoid confusion :sweat_smile:


Maybe someone here have a good idea ? :thinking: Since I may be extending later the app to other languages I don’t know exactly what to choose :sweat_smile:

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Seems like you are one and only person to try this app outside one of my friends :sweat_smile:
Do you have any feedback ? Or you quit using the app ? Either way is fine, but I would like to improve it to through comments and feedbacks :sweat_smile:

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Oh I haven’t really had time to try it out for real. Thanks for the reminder, though! I am very lazy at vocab practice outside of WK, though.

But I did notice you wrote 今日は instead of こんにちは. Is that the mistake you mentioned earlier?

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Oh no problem, I don’t want to sound clingy at all, but I want to make sure it fits at least someone needs outside of mine aha

Oh no, but you are right that the kana version of “こんにちは” is more common and that I should maybe switch for this one, I’ll change this in a next release as well :slight_smile:

It was an error cause when a non-logging in user try to import a public deck (it has been already fixed), but in the next version you’ll only be able to access the app after creating an account so this kind of bug won’t appear.

Next release’s content

Now, I will first focus on adding a way to review grammar through “Grammar Card” and have multiple learning features and only later I will try to make part of the app available without an account.

Currently, you should be able to see a new tab called “Lesson” where I expect to find user-created content later in the same format (now you just have some random posts I’ve made to test it out).

I’ve worked also on creating dialog and it works quite well ! But I need to think of a way to make it easy for user to create one (and not hardcode a solution).

Anyway thank for your comment and I will let users comment on their own to prevent me from pressuring them (I guess the fact that it is the first time I’ve opened an app to a community does make me a little nervous to flop :sweat_smile: )

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Hello !

A little update on my project, with the hope to reach more users :smile:
Currently, grammar cards can be added, you can use a picture to extract text from it (useful when you cannot read a kanji yet :wink: ), work on specific themes, share your deck (unit of learning for cards) and many others features to come !

Here is a presentation of the app:

PS: unfortunately, there is a login firewall not shown in the presentation for security reasons. I am the only developer working on this so I didn’t take much time to try to prevent this, but your email won’t be used (at least if I am planning to add a weekly mail, it won’t be send to those who didn’t voluntary click on the subscription)

Have a nice day :slight_smile:

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