LipSurf - WaniKani Voice Dictation. Review while you eat, do chores, etc


Yes, sorry about that. Can you try two things

  1. go to chrome://extensions and click the “update” button
  2. go to the options page (right click the LipSurf extension icon -> “options”) then click “reset to factory defaults”

Let me know if that fixes it, and sorry about the trouble - the timing seems to have put you on a bad in-between release that was out for a few minutes only.


Thank you for your continued efforts at improving this functionality. It really is fantastic. Since you are going to improve the conversion algorithm, maybe this won’t be an issue, but I’ve noticed that when I say ‘hoku’ for the kanji for ‘north’, it displays ‘kita’ instead and wanikani says that’s wrong. I guess Lipsurf can tell that I’m saying 北 but it doesn’t extrapolate ‘hoku’ from that?


Usually when WaniKani is looking for the onyomi instead of kunyomi or vice-versa it’ll just wiggle the answer box instead of marking it as wrong, signalling that it’s looking for something different. Did it do that, or did it just mark it as wrong?

Currently, it’s not really possible to distinguish between the two since we get kanji in the transcription, and in some cases you can say either reading of the kanji to get it to show. But I’ll keep this in mind and try to think of some way around that.

Hey Fugdkn, did those steps fix it for you?


Hi, yes, it just wiggles the answer box, so I just say ‘tadashii’. So it hasn’t affected me much, but I thought you might want to know, in case it affects things at higher levels.


Sorry for the late reply. Yeah, it looks like I just downloaded the app at a bad time haha.


One possible solution would be to have an additional popup that comes up from LipSurf and then it asks you did you mean A) ほく or B) きた in the uncommon cases this happens, but I’m not in love with that solution because it gets in the way of the flow of WK. Wonder what you and others think about that?

I was nervously checking error logs most of the day after that :sweat_smile:, glad it was a mostly isolated incident. I’m building tests to prevent this kind of careless issue again. Anyway, users hardly ever report bugs, thanks for letting me know, really!

It seems many LS users aren’t using the WaniKani lightning mode script with their reviews. When I do reviews without the lightning mode script, it’s a bit slower because I have to say “next” or “ネクスト” after every review and additionally the LS next command in English has a built-in delay of 700ms before actually executing in order to allow for you to say other valid commands that start with next (e.g. “next tab”). If people are really keen on doing their reviews without the lightning mode script, and want to keep saying “next” then it would be nice to at least have that delay removed.

So, one nice solution I have in mind is “modes”. If when you went to WaniKani, LS was put into “WaniKani Mode” it would then only allow you to input valid WaniKani commands, commands outside the realm of WK like “next tab” wouldn’t work unless you first said “exit WaniKani mode” (and there would be a little banner in the corner reminding you that you’re in a certain mode). This has the added benefit of preventing stray commands like “youtube” from executing by accident if the speech recognizer thinks you said “youtube” during a review and interrupting you (P.S. if this is happening to you now, I recommend you simply disable the youtube command).

Another example mode would be “writing mode” which would let you transcribe text long form… etc. etc.

What do peeps think about this? Neat or sheet?

Do you want to know what it feels like without that delay right now? One temporary solution is to just disable the following commands and LS is smart enough to then know that there’s no other “next …” commands so it doesn’t build the delay in anymore:

Browser: “next tab”, “next page”
WaniKani: “next item”


I realize my last post was a wall of text :sweat_smile: so here’s the tl;dr :

  • We can make saying “next” faster, and prevent accidental commands by putting LipSurf into a “WaniKani mode” when you’re doing WaniKani. Do you want this?

If no one wants, then I probably won’t bother :blush:

The big v1.7 update is getting verrrry close! I’m really excited for everyone to get this big upgrade. Also, I just released a minor fix v1.6.9.


Small progress update: I’ve made a custom version of WK for myself that breaks down readings into hiragana and sorts by the most frequent readings present in WK and then length (shortest first). This has been a great tool for testing to make sure:

  1. every pronunciation and reading can work – even when it’s a on’yomi kanji.
  2. more forgiveness for the 外人 accent

So far I’ve gone through 600 of the most common readings, out of 6000 (de-duplicated readings). The ones towards the tail end aren’t as important because those are mostly longer words that the Japanese speech recognizer doesn’t have issues with.

I think I will make a video demonstrating some new tips for the v1.7 release specifically for WaniKani. I’ve learned a bunch of stuff about pronunciation in the process.


v1.7 is out!!! :tada:

This was a really hard release. I stayed up 'till morning many days for this one. But I’m so happy it’s done! The kanji->kana conversion has been revamped, language switching is faster, WK is hugely improved… etc. I hope you guys find this version to work with WK eveeen bettterr!

Excited to hear what ppl think of the latest! I will post some tips about some new techniques for WK for v1.7 and beyond soon too (perhaps in video format, and perhaps tomorrow).


I still must be missing something about how this extension works. When I speak it captures my words and displays them on the screen, but even when they are correct the input box is never filled out.


That’s strange. You should be getting an error that says “needs pro” if you’re trying to use this on WaniKani and you’re not subscribed to pro.

Are you on the latest version of Chrome, v71?


I’m probably on the latest version. Anyway, when did WaniKani become a pro feature?


You can check by putting this in your address bar: chrome://settings/help

About 2 months ago, ever since 1.0 was released.


You might want to mention that in the title or OP somewhere. :slight_smile:


True! Doing reviews will be free soon, (but not lessons). So I will update it once that is case.


Okay, I’ll try it again at that point.


First off, it’s a bit sucky that you didn’t make it clear that you need to pay to use the WK feature, I mean that’s why we’re on this site after all. Anyways, I bit the bullet and paid and so far it seems worth the money.

There are some annoying bugs though, for example I’ve just had 野球, I answered “baseball” and it somehow understood “google baseball” and replaced the WK tab with a Google search tab. This isn’t the first time this has happened.

Saying “to talk” opens Twitter every time, LipSurf even recognizes that I say “to talk” but it stills closes WK and replaces it with Twitter… Saying “to advance” does the same. I even deactivated “control browser-level actions” but that didn’t work either. (Edit: I’ve disabled Twitter and so on, that seems to work).

Then there’s the problem with the software nor entering what WK expects, for example I needed to say “第二章”, so I did and it correctly understood me (it showed “第二章”), but WK isn’t looking for kanji, it want’s the answer in kana, so I had to say “正しい” in order to move on. This has happened on several other words as well.

A similar problem occurred with the word “四十二階”, I said it out loud in English and the software understood “fourty second floor”, I also tried “floor fourty second” but the software showed “42nd floor” and “floor 42nd”, which aren’t accepted by WK.

I also noticed that something is restarting the WK tab from while doing reviews, this might be another speech command that the software is mistakenly activating while I’m saying something.

I hope these kinks can be worked out (or there’s a setting for it) because otherwise the software is great and I’d definitely upgrade for a full year.


Thanks for your useful feedback!

It used to be free for WK (when I posted), I need to update the post to reflect it’s current state. I’m holding off until I get just just the WK lessons to be free (reviews will remain pro only).

All of the issues in this category (recognizing non-WK commands while in WK) will be eliminated with a feature I’m adding very soon (modes). It’s described a bit earlier in the thread.

This category of issue is the top-priority for the next release. It will be fixed in one of the small point releases (eg. 1.8.1).

Hmm numbers continue to present issues. What I’ll do is resurrect all my kanji/vocab and get them working one-by-one.

BTW, 1.8 is going to be released in the next few days. You will be able to add custom homophones/synonyms for troublesome words in the interim before the other fixes come out, at least. Here is a sneak peak of the features:


Which one is it?


Awesome, thanks for the fast answer! :slight_smile:

I can’t believe that I easily did all 299 reviews that I had accumulated over the last few days in one go. I usually get seriously disinterested after 150+ reviews but today I actually had fun and wanted more, thanks to LipSurf. I believe I can even do the 7days/level challenge now, my only problem was getting too many reviews but it seems like this is a non-issue with this handy tool.

Also, are there any plans for BunPro and Memrise support in the future? Those are the two main Japanese learning websites I use next to WK.