Flashcard Resources

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Flashcard Resources

Postby Terbin73 » Mon Oct 09, 2017 11:58 pm

Hey guys, this is my first year of quiz bowl and I have been recommended to use flashcards. I was wondering what applications or websites help you guys memorize clues the most easily. So far, I've heard about Anki and Mnemosyne but I am not sure which one to use or if there are any other good applications out there. Other studying methods and resources would also be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby UlyssesInvictus » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:28 am

Hi! Welcome to the forums :)

I'm going to start off by tooting my own here, and recommending my own website quizdb.org, which has tens of thousands of prior quizbowl questions stored for searching. The website also has a resources page where a couple other common resources like AseemDB are listed. QuizDB even has exportable questions which you can use to easily make your own flashcards (Mike Bentley even made a program to do it for you here).

However, like many other players, I'd start by recommending you just read lots of packets. The best way to memorize clues is to have context for them, and the best way to do that is to just expose yourself to lots and lots of questions!
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Santa Claus » Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:15 pm

UlyssesInvictus wrote:tooting my own here

I think you misplaced your horn.

I'd definitely agree with Raynor's sentiment - getting acquainted with the sorts of topics that come up in quiz bowl is one of the most important parts of the game, especially when starting out, and there's really no better way to do it than to immerse yourself in a few old packet sets and wade through them. Before you start any sort of flashcarding, I would recommend establishing that foundation of knowledge.

When you do decide that you want to start remembering specific facts in a manner that is conducive to flashcarding, here are some tips:

  • Always embed context into any cards you make. Quiz bowl isn't the same as, say, memorizing vocabulary for Spanish - you will almost always need additional details to actually learn anything useful. A useful technique that exists in both Mnemosyne and Anki is using clozes, which allow you to make multiple cards from a single paragraph by designating several sets of words or phrases that can be removed independently. For instance, a card that reads something like "The Ambrose-Singer theorem relates the curvature of a connection to its holonomy" can be chopped up into several cards like "The [...] relates the curvature of a connection to its holonomy" and "The Ambrose-Singer theorem relates the curvature of a connection to its [...]". This way both the fact in question and the information relevant to understanding it can be remembered, which is especially helpful at higher difficulties when clues tend to be more round-a-bout in how they reach the answerline. Alternatively, you can use conventional two-sided flashcards that just have big honkin' blocks of text; I seem to recall Max Schindler saying he did that and it seems to have worked pretty dang well for him.

  • Try to look things up before (or at the very least, after) you flashcard them. Much like the previous point, having contextual information is really important and even if you don't put it in the card you should have that understanding. For instance, if you're making a card about some plot detail or character in a novel or something, it'd probably help to know what the novel is actually about, what else the character did, who the author is, etc. I've personally approached this by trying to write notes on topics first and then flashcarding them later, and a lot of it ends up boiling down to avoiding making one singular flashcard on a subject.

  • Be sure to regularly review your flashcards. The strength of spaced-repetition flashcard systems like Mnemosyne and Anki are that, if you consistently use them, they can maintain your knowledge of large amount of information over a long period of time. If you're going to make flashcards just for benefit of the research put into them, go ahead, but if that's all your going for putting notes into a centralized document may be a more worthwhile endeavor. Even if you can't look at them every day, every other day can still be enough, especially if you don't have a backlog of several thousand flashcards, steadily accumulating as your waning interest in quiz bowl drives you to neglect them and with them any chance of being competitive again.

  • Anki and Mnemosyne both do about the same thing, but there are some minor differences. Overall, Anki has a little more functionality, but really there's nothing wrong with Mnemosyne. In terms of specifics: Anki has nicer looking graphs by far, which is either a good thing or a bad thing depending on how often you review and how well you remember the information you carded. Both have the cloze option I talked about earlier, and they can even transfer card data between one another if you decide to switch (this doesn't preserve review data though). However, Anki lets you sync your cards online and has built-in functionality allowing you to potentially share them with motivated teammates - they also have a mobile app, but it costs $25 (which is used to support the development of both it and the free desktop version). The way the spaced repetition is implemented is also subtly different between the two, but not really in any meaningful way.

Alright I'm done rambling - have fun with flashcards or whatever.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Mike Bentley » Fri Oct 13, 2017 4:18 pm

I don't recall having to pay for Anki on mobile. Maybe they only charge for iOS?
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:41 pm

What's the exact name of the Anki app and is it available on Google Play? There are a few Anki apps there, so I wasn't sure if there was a specific one.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Mike Bentley » Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:35 pm

tksaleija wrote:What's the exact name of the Anki app and is it available on Google Play? There are a few Anki apps there, so I wasn't sure if there was a specific one.


The one I use is called AnkiDroid. https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... anki&hl=en
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Santa Claus » Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:15 pm

Mike Bentley wrote:I don't recall having to pay for Anki on mobile. Maybe they only charge for iOS?


I was thinking of the iOS version, so that could very well be the case.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Sun Oct 15, 2017 3:17 pm

UlyssesInvictus wrote: QuizDB even has exportable questions which you can use to easily make your own flashcards (Mike Bentley even made a program to do it for you here).


Does anyone know if this program can be used with AnkiDroid? If not, do you know of any method of flashcard creation that doesn't involve manually copy/pasting thousands of questions?
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby armitage » Sun Oct 15, 2017 3:54 pm

tksaleija wrote:
UlyssesInvictus wrote: QuizDB even has exportable questions which you can use to easily make your own flashcards (Mike Bentley even made a program to do it for you here).


Does anyone know if this program can be used with AnkiDroid? If not, do you know of any method of flashcard creation that doesn't involve manually copy/pasting thousands of questions?


You need to use the browser AnkiWeb app to sync between your desktop and phone app. There are instructions on the Anki website (ankiweb.net) to create an account and sync it with your desktop and phone data. In total, the steps involved are 1) export a JSON file from QuizDB 2) use Mike's program to convert it to front/back flashcard format 3) import the resulting file to your desktop app 4) sync it with the browser extension, and from there on you can sync it to AnkiDroid.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Rather Wild Indeed » Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:00 pm

Does anyone get this error when importing?
An error occurred in an add-on.
Please post on the add-on forum:
https://anki.tenderapp.com/discussions/add-ons

Traceback (most recent call last):
File "aqt\main.py", line 764, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 272, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 288, in importFile
File "C:\Users\Rishik Hombal\AppData\Roaming\Anki2\addons\Json_Importer.py", line 22, in __init__
self.mappingFields = [f['name'] for f in self.model['flds']]
TypeError: 'NoneType' object has no attribute '__getitem__'


EDIT: This is for the Anki from JSON thing.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby dablasian » Sun Oct 15, 2017 6:01 pm

Toystory (bull) wrote:Does anyone get this error when importing?
An error occurred in an add-on.
Please post on the add-on forum:
https://anki.tenderapp.com/discussions/add-ons

Traceback (most recent call last):
File "aqt\main.py", line 764, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 272, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 288, in importFile
File "C:\Users\Rishik Hombal\AppData\Roaming\Anki2\addons\Json_Importer.py", line 22, in __init__
self.mappingFields = [f['name'] for f in self.model['flds']]
TypeError: 'NoneType' object has no attribute '__getitem__'


EDIT: This is for the Anki from JSON thing.


Yeah I've been having the same issue. I just started converting the .json files into CSVs and then importing the CSVs into Anki. However, it would be nicer if the Anki importer for .json files worked.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby UlyssesInvictus » Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:04 pm

I haven't looked at Mike's code in-depth, but the line that's bugging out on the "None" call is probably due to some QuizDB questions that have no subcategory associated with them. (Or maybe even category or tournament, but that should be rare by now.)

Just a guess, though.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Mike Bentley » Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:17 pm

I think it might be because you're importing the cards to something other than a Basic note type. Or because you're importing the original QuizDB output and not the modified _anki.json output. But if you're still getting that error, send me the problematic json file to bentley.michael.j@gmail.com and I'll take a look when I get a chance.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:54 am

Toystory (bull) wrote:Does anyone get this error when importing?
An error occurred in an add-on.
Please post on the add-on forum:
https://anki.tenderapp.com/discussions/add-ons

Traceback (most recent call last):
File "aqt\main.py", line 764, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 272, in onImport
File "aqt\importing.py", line 288, in importFile
File "C:\Users\Rishik Hombal\AppData\Roaming\Anki2\addons\Json_Importer.py", line 22, in __init__
self.mappingFields = [f['name'] for f in self.model['flds']]
TypeError: 'NoneType' object has no attribute '__getitem__'


EDIT: This is for the Anki from JSON thing.


I've run into this same error. I've made sure it was in the converted anki-json format and tried doing fewer questions. I emailed Michael to try to get a resolution.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby armitage » Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:07 pm

I got the same problem a while ago and used some online service to convert .json to .csv, like https://konklone.io/json/ or anything else. It could be a problem with the original Anki add on. But the csv should work
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby dablasian » Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:34 pm

armitage wrote:I got the same problem a while ago and used some online service to convert .json to .csv, like https://konklone.io/json/ or anything else. It could be a problem with the original Anki add on. But the csv should work


That's exactly what I do now to create Anki decks.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:18 pm

dablasian wrote:
armitage wrote:I got the same problem a while ago and used some online service to convert .json to .csv, like https://konklone.io/json/ or anything else. It could be a problem with the original Anki add on. But the csv should work


That's exactly what I do now to create Anki decks.


Alright I'm just straight up bad with computers so if anyone feels nice enough to send me a quick run through of how to make flashcards from the .csv format it'd be a huge help. It keeps labeling the ID as the question, the question as the answer, and the actual answer is nowhere to be seen.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby t-bar » Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:06 pm

tksaleija wrote:
dablasian wrote:
armitage wrote:I got the same problem a while ago and used some online service to convert .json to .csv, like https://konklone.io/json/ or anything else. It could be a problem with the original Anki add on. But the csv should work


That's exactly what I do now to create Anki decks.


Alright I'm just straight up bad with computers so if anyone feels nice enough to send me a quick run through of how to make flashcards from the .csv format it'd be a huge help. It keeps labeling the ID as the question, the question as the answer, and the actual answer is nowhere to be seen.

I haven't tried the .json converter, but I have run into this issue with .csv files before. My guess would be it's an issue with your "field mapping" settings. When you import a .csv file, you have to tell Anki what to do with each column of the file--whether to store it in a particular field, or to ignore it. If the note type you're using has n fields, Anki's default guess is to put the first n columns into those fields, and ignore the remaining columns. For example, I get the following screen when importing a file with 14 columns into a note type with 3 fields:

import_screenshot1.png
(62.51 KiB) Not downloaded yet

If this isn't what you want--for example, if Field 1 is an ID number--then you have to modify these settings. First, figure out which columns you want. If you open the .csv file in Excel, you should be able to see the type of information that's stored in each column ("Column A" in Excel becomes "Field 1" when importing to Anki, and so on). Based on what you reported, my guess would be that Column A has an ID number, B has the question, and probably C has the answer.

Next, click on the "Change" buttons next to each of the fields you need to reassign. You should get a window that looks like this, with options that say "Map to [whatever fields your note type has]":

import_screenshot2.png
(14 KiB) Not downloaded yet

Depending on what note type you're using, you probably want to do something like map the question field to "Front," map the answer field to "Back," and ignore all other columns. If you change those settings, the cards should import properly.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby dablasian » Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:49 pm

tksaleija wrote:
dablasian wrote:
armitage wrote:I got the same problem a while ago and used some online service to convert .json to .csv, like https://konklone.io/json/ or anything else. It could be a problem with the original Anki add on. But the csv should work


That's exactly what I do now to create Anki decks.


Alright I'm just straight up bad with computers so if anyone feels nice enough to send me a quick run through of how to make flashcards from the .csv format it'd be a huge help. It keeps labeling the ID as the question, the question as the answer, and the actual answer is nowhere to be seen.


Another solution might be what I do. What I do is convert a .json file into a csv. Then I copy the csv onto a Google Sheet. On the Google Sheet, I delete every column that isn't the question or the answer. After that, I move the question and answer to columns A and B. Download the Google Sheet as a csv. Upload to Anki.

I know this is a very long way to get to the solution, but it works for me lol.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby armitage » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:05 pm

Your output should look like this. The left is the file Mike's program creates. The right is a csv file.
Do this with the website from before. You should get something like this ("Download the entire CSV").
Then you can import as tab-spaced text.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:26 pm

Thanks, these were all really helpful and I have about 900 flashcards now! As I was making tossups cards, I realized that you can't make bonuses like you do tossups for obvious reasons. Is there any way to make bonuses into flashcards or do we just have to cover up the answers while we read the question on the QuizDB website?
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby Mike Bentley » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:19 pm

tksaleija wrote:Thanks, these were all really helpful and I have about 900 flashcards now! As I was making tossups cards, I realized that you can't make bonuses like you do tossups for obvious reasons. Is there any way to make bonuses into flashcards or do we just have to cover up the answers while we read the question on the QuizDB website?


I'm not sure what those obvious reasons are. The tool makes each bonus part into a flashcard with the leadin + clue as the front and the answer as the back. You sometimes lose context but i haven't found that to be much of a problem.
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Re: Flashcard Resources

Postby tksaleija » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:30 pm

Mike Bentley wrote:
tksaleija wrote:Thanks, these were all really helpful and I have about 900 flashcards now! As I was making tossups cards, I realized that you can't make bonuses like you do tossups for obvious reasons. Is there any way to make bonuses into flashcards or do we just have to cover up the answers while we read the question on the QuizDB website?


I'm not sure what those obvious reasons are. The tool makes each bonus part into a flashcard with the leadin + clue as the front and the answer as the back. You sometimes lose context but i haven't found that to be much of a problem.


Sorry, I wasn't making reference to or demeaning your converter program in any way. I was just noting that in my head, making bonus cards seems like it could be difficult because it could be easy for the program to assume you want the lead in on the front and the rest of the content on the back, which would defeat the purpose of a flash card. But if the program you made makes it easy to create bonus cards, I'll certainly utilize it. Sorry for the confusion, and thank you for the clarification!
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