Stricter Meanings for Verbs

I’ve looked through and haven’t been able to see any other threads on this same topic, but there’s a few issues I have with how verb meanings are handled in WaniKani, when evaluating right or wrong answers.

  1. Some verbs seem to accept the imperative form as a meaning, while others do not. From first glance, this appears to be that verbs that are longer in English (to rise up, to correct) seem to accept the imperative form of the verbs (rise up, correct) while shorter verbs (to pull, to climb) require the full infinitive. Whether these are accepted should be consistent, and I’d lean towards suggesting they should consistently be rejected. Given the frequent reuse of the imperative form of verbs either as a noun (as in demand) or an adjective (as in correct) it doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense to accept them as equivalent answers for the verb form of the word.

  2. An option for stricter meaning requirements for transitive verbs may be a good idea. Some verbs (to stop, to stop something being one example) accept the same definition (“To stop”) allowing us to possibly inadvertently get one right that we actually DIDN’T really get right. An example of this is I put “To stop” for one, and “To stop something” for the other. I got “To stop something” wrong because it was actually the intransitive verb I assigned it to, but I progressed the transitive form to the next SRS level although it was equally wrong, just my wrong reading was also “Acceptable”. I know a lot of people don’t necessarily care or will argue that “To stop” is probably an acceptable meaning for both in English, but for those of us who really care about getting verb forms down, stricter matching could be important.

If this topic exists elsewhere please let me know and I’ll delete it or whatever I can.

I don’t see how that could happen without basically marking a perfectly valid English meaning as incorrect. The problem you seem to be facing is that unlike Japanese, English does not have distinct transitivity pairs for all verbs. ‘Stop’ is both a transitive and intransitive verb in English.

Then maybe what you want is something like the double check scripts that allow you to mark something as incorrect even if WK marks it correct? This seems to be what people do to make sure they mark things that are marked as correct by the spell checker even if incorrect.

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I’d say it’s “possible” by enforcing the meaning that was presented in the lesson. It’s presented as “To stop something”, it may be worth actually requiring the use of that word “something” that is present in the vocabulary reading. It’s a bit bloaty, but could be an option.

I’ll look into that mark-as-wrong script. I usually use the app, but for when I use the web version it can probably alleviate some of my problems.

That doesn’t actually fix the issue that perfectly valid meanings would be marked incorrect. ‘To stop’ is both transitive and intransitive in English. To say that it’s “wrong” as a meaning is not actually accurate.

WaniKani allows you to be slightly off, but this becomes stricter as words get shorter (because of how this algorithm is defined). This is why some are accepted while others are rejected.

The Double Check script also has a “close enough” setting (similar to another script called “Close But No Cigar”) which will require a perfect match to accept an answer.


Very true, I was thinking something along the lines of an option (maybe there is a script for this already) that gives you an “enforce pedantic transitive/intransitive verb meanings” that overrides this flexibility.

I figured that this might be what was happening. The fact that it worked for verbs with more letters in English and not for verbs with fewer letters in English suggested this from the start. I may look at that Close But No Cigar script to see if there’s a way to modify it to only apply to verbs since it seems to be me generally wanting very strict matching on verbs only.

It seems most of what I want is available through scripts. I’ll just move forward hunting down scripts or modifying existing ones to get what I want.

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