Reviews in context

It’s very funny. I thought I had understood how a SRS works. An item keeps coming up repeatedly until you remember it, and then less often the more often you remember it.

Basically that would mean that items learned together have an increasingly smaller chance of coming up together, because you will always remember some better than others.

However, recently I get the distinct impression that items I initially learned together come up for review after a very long time still being together. Almost as if, independent of whether I earlier remembered them or not, WK would bring them up for review after a fixed time. Like, all the things with the same Kanji in them. All the days of the week. All the disaster-related things.

I mean, what are the odds? There’s always some that stick on day one and the others that turn into hated leeches (about a dozen synonyms of “examine”, anyone?), and in any SRS these should be ages apart after a few reviews, but there it is.

I suppose I’m seeing things?

Oh, and even more funny, I often get an item that I haven’t seen in like a decade one day in WK and the next in KameSame, or the other way round. Again, what are the odds? Besides, this usually means even though I failed it in one app I do then remember it in the other app, which kind of spoils the idea. :frowning:

I am no stats guru but given the sheer number of items to study, statistical oddities are bound to happen every once in a while.

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If you get an item wrong in aprentice one or two, it will only be set back a couple hours from the rest. Then if you happen to go to sleep before you do the reviews, or you don’t do the review right when it comes up, but wait until you have a bigger batch, or something, it’ll just sync back up with the rest. Also, if you skip a day of reviews right when those reviews should have happened a day apart, they sync up again. When you get one wrong at a master or enlightened, it generally won’t sync up again, unless you let reviews pile up for a longer time than a day or two.

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The SRS intervals aren’t random. They’re set values of 4h, 8h, 1d, 2d etc. If you review it successfully, the item’s duration increases. If it’s incorrect then it doesn’t, and I think it can actually decrease on subsequent failures. If you pass a majority of your items on every review, then it’s inevitable that they’ll return for review together. KameSame uses the same intervals, so if you populate your KameSame lessons with WaniKani items, then you’ll inevitably see many of those up for review at the same time as well.

As for leeches showing up at the same time as similar items. Leeches just show up more frequently, meaning they’ll be up for review in the same session as more of your other items in general. A little bit of confirmation bias around those despised items goes a long way.


You drop down 1 stage for every incorrect review before Guru (stage 5). At Guru and higher, you drop down 2 stages for every incorrect review.

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