Yet another warning not to abuse the override script from someone who did

Yes. In some Anki circles, there is the “suspend things that don’t stick so they don’t wear you down” philosophy. The idea being that since SRS is a means to an end, one card or another may not matter to your overall goal, so it’s ok to suspend things that you don’t need. Especially in decks you didn’t make, there are likely to be cards that just don’t matter to what you’re doing. Specialized vocabulary for an area you don’t care about, for example. If they later become important, they can be unsuspended, of course.

It’s a pretty reasonable idea. Leeches and cards that frustrate you take a lot of time and are demotivating. Getting them to disappear for a time can mean the difference between progress and burnout.

But with WK, I’m not sure the theory holds. With the kanji, you don’t know what you’ll need, since kanji are used in so many non-intuitive ways, so you can’t afford to skip a few. With vocab, the reason for their existence is to reinforce the kanji, and sometimes other vocabulary that you might not have seen yet. So no matter how useless certain vocabulary may seem, they aren’t necessarily there just for themselves, but as part of a larger pattern that isn’t necessarily apparent.

In my weaker moments, I have occasionally wished WK had a suspend feature, but mostly I’m glad it doesn’t.


Sure this was an extreme exemple, but almost nowhere I’ve seen “a thing” with the “a” particle except for 大作 and the fact that I put “an essay” was pretty much mistaking one word for another, so I’m still glad I fail even though it’s still correct, I think it’s best if I keep it as generic as possible without useless particles. For example 大作 main translation should be “epic” instead of being a secondary meaning (weird one)

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Part of the reason I brought it up was because I’ve had instances where I got a word “wrong” from forgetting the word they wanted. For instance, I got 村人 wrong during the lesson because I forgot the word “villager” and put “village person” instead.

For the future, I’d just put “village person” as a synonym, but what if (extreme example) I forget that too, and go with “person who lives in a village” or something? It’s super easy to abuse (or be tempted to abuse) having some leniency, but I think sometimes it’s okay to give yourself a bit of leeway.

Kudos to you and everyone else not using the override script for just rolling with your errors, though. I’m not sure how many times I could stand getting something wrong because of typos/fat fingers/poor wording before running my head through a wall.

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I just want to confirm again that you can get around this without overrides by adding the synonym during reviews after inputting one of the expected answers.

It’ll bring it up again in the same session with no penalties. I just now failed 緊 on a potential burn by writing “tension” instead of “tense” (one of those arbitrary differences that this feature exists for), and after adding the synonym following the expected answer, was able to review it again and have it go straight into burned.

If you fail 村人 by writing some reasonable synonym that isn’t on the list yet, you could just enter it after answering with one that is, and get to review it again. The only catch is that you have to enter the new synonym after one of the expected responses.

I agree that there are enough cases where there are reasonable equivalents/different wordings WK doesn’t catch that it would be difficult to get to Level 60 if you had to accept them as mistakes each time. But you can just use that functionality to address that without ever adding potentially abusable scripts, if you’d rather not tempt yourself.

For the moment I’m not using any script and I’m doing fine. If I make some silly mistake I just tell myself to be more careful. For the moment I can handle because I’m only level 10 and I have a lot of time (and I only do my reviews on my phone) but maybe later on I will fell the need to use some of them to make better use of my time. Is it so that scripts can’t be used on the phone?

I’m having a hard time seeing it works this way. It is a bit similar situation if you fail a review once, then fail it again but this time override with correct answer. In this case the item is marked as failed.

If it works like you are describing it would retroactively look back on the session and correct the failed item to a success based on the synonym you added afterwards :thinking:

Again, I’m not doubting but just confused. Also I never have lightning mode not enabled so it would be a bore to take it off. You’re saying that if you add the synonym after the failed response the item gets demoted? At least with tsurukame (iOS app) when you fail but override by adding synonym item gets promoted.

I agree that a suspend feature would be a bad idea, because you’d be banishing the word from your deck, though I think using the override script might not be so bad. After all, it is forcing you to produce the word, even if you get it wrong several times in the same session and keep overriding it. After getting it wrong several times, you might find you never get it wrong again (esp. if you make a special effort to review the mnemonic or make new one when you override).

I sometimes find that the cards that get wrong initially and override become my best friends.

Personally, I like overriding because otherwise my progression might be delayed. Every week I’m learning more and more with WK and then seeing these kanji and vocab “in the wild” via Japanese subtitles and such. This solidifies them for me, giving more context and relevance, so it’s nice to be able to start this process sooner. The alternative way of being a perfectionist may increase your mastery of WK kanji in the short-run, but I don’t think it necessarily is better in the long-run.

So ultimately, I will go with my preferences, which is to use override how I want. I’m at level 15 and am doing really well - WK has vastly improved my reading comprehension (I wasn’t starting from zero though). I am yet to get my first burned card, but I certainly wouldn’t override something that is about to be burned.

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They’ll call me a cheater, but override abuse keeps me stumbling forward and motivated. I’ve abused it all. I will use it to pass a kanji early, if it would otherwise prevent me from leveling up, but the next time around I will fail it if I still can’t remember it. And I will pass a word if I put in a close-enough translation like “acquire” instead of “acquisition”. I’ve also passed leeches just so that I don’t have to see it again for a week, if it’s frustrating me. At some point WK throws out a ton of words that translate into “analysis/examination/investigation” and I will keep going around in circles on those. I won’t Burn them, but I’ll push them out of the way so that I can focus on something else.

Language learning for me isn’t about getting 100% correct right now, it’s about wading through and adding more of those N+1s. When I started WK, I could barely read the example sentences. Even if I could comprehend individual words I couldn’t keep them linked in my head by the time I got to the end of the sentence. I’d avoid reading them because it was too difficult. Now, my reading comprehension has vastly improved and I can quickly read most of them. I switched my phone’s native language to Japanese. I read and watch native content. And that was my goal, getting to native input. Next week will be my 1 year anniversary, and I will have learned over 1400 kanji and 4400 words. Maybe I’m not a 100% master of WK, but I’ve been able to cram a lot more this way than if I had been a perfectionist.


If you fail the item once, on its meaning, wait for it to come around again. After entering a/the correct meaning, before moving off of the item, expand its details and enter a synonym. It will then go back into that session’s review queue at no penalty.

If you answer it correctly, either with the original answer or your new synonym, on this second pass, it will ignore/override your earlier “wrong” answer.

Yes. You need to wait for it to come around for you to enter a correct response first.

Basically, the new synonym needs to be added after the item is already “green,” before you move off it again.

It’s unintuitive, but it’s there.


I believe the theory still holds. You do not have to remember the kanji 看 right off the bat, or the word 看護師 - unless you plan to use it soon, actively or passively.
I’d not discard it completely though, because the kanji will also pop up in words like 看板 and the like, and you’ll most probably meet a 看護師 or more before you die… as an example.

What I’d like WK to do is to suspend automatically, put stuff back into the lesson stack and pull them out 5 levels later, and put them all up as the “last stack of doom” when you reach lvl 60 and guru your last 60er items - basically making it “level 61: your most stubborn leeches”.

I’m also not happy with the whole “burn” concept, I wish we could disable that, and the intervals just keep getting longer. There are people who have been here for years and reset from 60 to 1 (or 3), which proves that WK isn’t quite as 使い捨て as it likes to present itself - precisely because it lets you forget stuff, by taking it out of the system permanently.


Yeah, I probably attribute a little too much cleverness to the WK team than is warranted. :wink: But there’s certainly more interconnection between items than in the average Anki deck, so you’d want to be at least a little careful that it won’t bite you later. Reviewing the relevant kanji pages would likely be enough.

I totally agree that a suspend would be welcome, though personally I’d not want it to be automatic. I’d rather only suspend items that are annoying to me, and I doubt any automated system would do it. Also, there are some terms, no matter how annoying, that I’d not want to suspend. Automated restarts, though, I’d be highly in favor of, maybe as a new lesson. Something like a ‘remove from queue for X days’ kind of option. Enough to give your brain a break, but so you can’t forget.

I totally agree on burns though. I haven’t actually gotten far enough yet to hit my first ones, but I’m not really in favor of it. I’d rather the time just get doubled, or yearly, or whatever, as long as you like (and your membership holds).


Maybe this is sidetracking, but I wanted to touch on that I don’t worry too much about remembering every kanji isolated. Like with the 看 it took me a while to think, but as soon as I saw 看板 and 看護師 their meanings and readings just popped in my head instinctively. With the lone kanji not so much. Most of the time you see kanji in context and possibly with some other kanji and okurigana. I think it’s important as a learner that to read you don’t have to disregard this info or consider it “cheating”, like I did in the beginning. Natives definitely do it, too.

The end goal for reading is too see “words” instead of individual kanji anyway.


there’s a lot of instances where i have no idea what a kanji means. the other day someone on discord (link in my profile (shameless plug)) asked what 応 means.
i had no clue. i do know you find it in 一応、応援、対応、応じる, so my guess would be something like “react”, but the point is, i can read it in words, and derive from it being in words meaning a, b and c.

in isolation though, most kanji escape me completely. it’s definitely less easy than learning what “un” means, in unnecessary, uninterrupted, unintentional.

this is both a curse (for wk’s srs learning) and a blessing (i can read material closer to my language level, but not quite, that’s why i’m here).

i once proposed to have wk determine your readiness to level up by vocab accuracy, not by kanji.

this could be a mode you’d have to opt-in in the options.

edit: a workaround would be to use iknow, starting at some 30er or 40er level, that would refresh your memories and teach you new things at the same time.


Glad I’m not the only one :smiley:

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English translation of a Japanese word is just an approximation of what this word actually mean. So it doesn’t matter what wording you use in your answer as long as you get the basic meaning correct. Therefore I think using synonyms is a good idea, without any exceptions.

Typos and similar meaning/phrase are obviously not the problems here (otherwise there wouldn’t be a synonyms feature provided by the platform itself). It’s when the meaning/reading seems to be at the tip of one’s tongue making them go “Oh I knew that”, or “I just got it mixed up with this other word once”.

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