[Feedback] Advanced Japanese Vocabulary course no longer displays phonetic kana readings in reviews

(Bobowen1) #1

which is obviously a problem if you forget how to pronounce the characters. It doesn’t seem to be a bug but a change in the design along with the new font and slightly different layout. I don’t know which version of Memrise this was introduced in as I only downloaded the two December updates today, but please please sort this out as I’m having to look up each word in the dictionary after reviewing it to make sure I got the pronunciation right (there is no audio for this course) and consequently it’s taking ten times as long to get through! Please fix this!!!

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(Noforgetnihongo) #2

This. On the iOS app, I’ve been studying the Japanese ‘JLPT N1 2000 Vocabulary’ deck and the removal of kanji readings in the update makes it basically impossible to study. In the previous version, the pronunciation would flash up for a second after every answer so you could check that you knew the correct reading of the kanji. Now there is no way to know if you read it correctly without leaving the app and looking it up in the dictionary. I really hope this it is changed back soon as possible. This is a major problem for people studying Japanese (or Chinese) vocab decks!

(Ella Bjorck) #3

A while ago, I started doing the course JLPT N2 from Memrise Beta. I found it very helpful, and I enjoyed the layout a lot. But the recent update brought along some unfortunate changes, in my opinion.

So, in this course, you first learn 15 new words in hiragana/katakana. And then in the next lesson you learn the corresponding kanji, and so on. Before the update, the kanji reading would always pop up when you studied the hiragana reading, and the hiragana reading would always pop up when you studied the kanji reading. I found this very helpful.

Since the update, however, this feature has been removed. The corresponding reading still shows up when you are first introduced to a new word/kanji. But not when you repeat it. In my case, this has led to me sometimes knowing how to write a word in kanji, but not having any idea how to pronounce it.

If others have the same opinion as me on this, I would be very happy if it could go back to the way it used to be. (I’m not the best at expressing myself in English, but I hope this made sense.)

(Marcus W) #4

Since the recent updates of the iOS app the columns marked as “show after test” are no longer shown after the tests as they previously were.

(Enjoy Kanji) #5

“show after test” not working on iphone app.

(Sakura33) #6

I have to agree with you. This is pretty annoying when you don’t see the corresponding Kanji for all the kana words. This last update takes away 50% of the Memrise usefulness when learning Japanese. Can someone from Memrise please confirm that this will be fixed in the next update?

(Thomas Heiss) #7

@bobowen1 @noforgetnihongo @ella.bjorck @Marcus.W @EnjoyKanji @sakura33

Hi all,

I am well aware that you placed this thread in the IOS mobile app bug section.

But as I am reading that there is no uploaded audio in the course for any of the kanji or hiragana/katakana symbols and you have to rely on the “show after-test readings” I thought you might appreciate if I leave you a tip here.

If you would use the Memrise web portal for the learning or classic reviews, you could install this Tampermonkey user script from Cooljingle to enable the missing TTS audio: [Userscript] Memrise Audio Provider

I enjoy this audio plugin (on the web) very much for my PT BR courses like “Duolingo vocabulary” or “50 languages” where those words or sentences have no associated mp3 audio uploaded from Forvo & Co.

I tested it successfully to be working in the preview for the first level with a valid Japanese definition column: https://www.memrise.com/course/45725/jlpt-n1-2000-vocabulary-words-japanese/1/garden/preview/

It also works for me in on the first or third level where the words Japanese definition is given but the audio is missing for the most time: https://www.memrise.com/course/24151/jlpt-n2-from-memrise-beta/1/

However the 2nd pronunciation level crashes with some script errors (probably because of the missing of the 1st Japanese definition) at the moment in the learning or previewing mode and I will be reporting it to Cooljingle.


Interesting fact: The Memrise web portal also still works with the “show after-test” pronunciation column which will definitely be displayed when I planted my first words for level 1 for the above linked JLPT N2 course.

Maybe you just need to find a way to install a Japanese hardware keyboard to be able to type the Japanese/Chinese symbols on the Memrise website instead of strictly relying on your smartphone/tablet touchscreen until the Memrise team fixes this IOS app issue or if you want to have the TTS Japanese audio permanently enabled (I would, what is the point in learning words/sentences for any course with no audio at all?).

I am curious: How do you turn the Japanese audio on for both courses on the mobile apps when the audio uploads are missing? Are there mobile app workarounds?

I have not tested yet the Tampermonkey or Violentmonkey addons on the mobile browsers Firefox or Chrome, only on Firefox V52.9.0esr (Windows) or Firefox Quantum V63.x./64.0.

The alternative non-typing solution for the web would be to use Cooljingle’s user scripts “all tapping” or “all multiple choice” and to avoid any typing answers.

I can not think of a good way to use a mouse on a PC and to have to click on all the on-screen shown keyboard symbols in the “classic review” mode on the Memrise web portal.
Anyways, most course owners have set their courses to “non-typing” which you can overwrite with Cooljingle’s “all typing” user script.

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(Noforgetnihongo) #8

Thanks, Thomas, for your helpful and detailed reply. It’s useful to know that audio can be added to the web version. I primarily do my reviews whilst on the train via the iOS app and am not able to use a laptop, etc. As far as I know it isn’t possible to install user scripts in iOS browsers. The main website is actually very difficult to use in a mobile browser anyway. In the iOS app the audio isn’t really necessary if show after test is available. The app was working perfectly before the last update so it very unfortunate for mobile users that the feature was removed. I will try your suggestions on my laptop, though. Thanks.

(Kana) #9

:cherry_blossom: :cherry_blossom: :cherry_blossom: :cherry_blossom: :cherry_blossom: :cherry_blossom:
Hi everyone in this thread!

Thank you very much for your valuable feedback, this is very very useful for us.

Recently, some changes were made to iOS apps for cleaner user interface. In the course of that, memrise has removed the literal translations/pronunciations from our question screens as we thought flashing you with the literal translations for such a short time was not very helpful, so we are hoping to find other more effective ways to show them to you in our future versions. If you were a big fan of seeing them even for such a short time, we’d love to hear more thoughts on this. I’m especially interested in whether you thought the original length of time that the text appeared for was enough to process the information. Were the text on screen long enough for you to read it?

Thank you as always!

(Bobowen1) #10


Yeah I think the original length of time that the pronunciations appeared for was fine, and the text size was just right. They may only appear for a short time, but appearing for a short time is infinitely better than not appearing at all. The pronunciation in kana is essential information and should not appear only when the word is first introduced!


(Marcus W) #11

I found the previous setup to be good and I think that brief time was enough for a reminder of the kana when giving a kanji answer. I defended miss it now in my learning sessions.

(Noforgetnihongo) #12

Hello, thanks for looking into this. It worked well before. Sometimes it felt a little too short but generally it was fine. Without it, it has been impossible to continue the courses I was doing. I hope it can be added back soon so I can start studying it again.

How about giving users the option to turn this on/off in the settings? You could potentially also give us the option to adjust the length of time it is displayed.

(Bteyema) #13

Thank you for your response to this.

Although I am not currently studying Japanese, I am using a custom course to learn Chinese and have encountered the same problem. Personally, I found that flashing the pinyin (phonetic text) and translation after each correct/incorrect answer significantly helped me, especially since the audio recording quality of the custom course I take is less than ideal. Because the sound files of this course were not professionally recorded (which is no fault of Memrise), the phonetic text was crucial in making sure I can correctly pronounce each Chinese character without straining to make sure I heard correctly each time.

I understand how a more minimal interface could be nice, but frankly the phonetic text was unobtrusive and much more of a help than a hindrance. I’m not exaggerating when I say that this significantly derailed my study process with Memrise, since I was heavily relying on the app to supplement the in-person classes I am taking. The length of time that the text displayed was also not an issue for me at all, since it only takes a brief glance to confirm.

I really hope the team at Memrise will reconsider this change and add the pronunciation text and translation back to the iOS app as soon as possible. I’m sure that most learners of Chinese and Japanese would agree that re-adding it would be best. Thank you for reading!

(Hayley Rachel Eppsb5) #14

I found the previous length of time and version of the app was good for me and would like it to go back to that way.

(Thomas Heiss) #15

How good is Japanese or Chinese TTS audio (e.g Duolingo, Google translate)?

If you like it better than the custom non-professional recordings in your custom Chinese course, you can overwrite the played sound in the default settings of the Tampermonkey “Memrise Audio Provider” user script on the web portal (not the mobile app) by enabling the “Override all audio” setting.

So far I only have some experience with the Portuguese Brazil TTS audio from Duolingo/Google or Spanish audio on Lingvist (superb, crystal clear), but not with Asian languages…

(Kana) #16

Hi Everyone, and thank you very very much to all who have sent in your thoughts.

After internal discussions, the team have decided to put that feature( additional information popping up after tests). This will happen in one of our future app updates; as soon as we have the codes ready we will put it back in.

Thank you for your patience and contribution on this.

The Ultimate Kanji Course no longer shows both the readings and meanings at the same time during reviews
(Noforgetnihongo) #17

Great news. Thanks for listening to our feedback. Looking forward to getting back to studying Japanese again properly once it is fixed.

(Bteyema) #18

Thank you! We really appreciate this!

(Noforgetnihongo) #19

It’s been fixed in the new update. Thank you! Now I just have catch up on my 400+ reviews. Wish me luck!