Needs an option to revert to the old style

The new style is clunky, slow and lags on my laptop, so while bugs are ironed out we all need a way to revert back to the old version.

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The new style is simply awful. Please give us an option to revert to the old one, much better

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I completely agree. I have heard a lot about why the developers think it would take too many resources to justify keeping all of the features (including, somehow, a simple feature like the timer), but I haven’t heard a single word that justifies turning off the old version for people who prefer it, at least until they get a new version that isn’t super buggy and missing features of the old version. I don’t care one iota about the style, for what it is worth.

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Everything I think is wrong with the new version has been said many times, so I won’t repeat it. What I think is most troubling, however, is the mindset at Memrise that led to this. Memrise has always been kind of quirky, not as slick or as popular as many other sites, like Quizlet, but it had its advantages, at least for some people. It has been my favorite because the spaced-repeticion mostly works well, and I was able to use difficult words when I felt like it wasn’t perfect. I like the mems when they are there, but I never added any myself, but I know a lot of people really thought they were critical. And I have been here something like three years, and many others longer, and we have developed patters in our studying that has taken what works for us and made it into a routine. So when something that we have made part of our daily routine has been taken away, it seriously sucks.

Memrise as a company has been all over the place, with Decks (remember Decks?), with Mems (Yes!, No!, well probably, but no promises), and with everything really. And when the explanation is almost always “we looked at how many hours it would take, and we decided that your concern isn’t worth our trouble,” that is about as bad as it gets from a user-relations point of view, so one is left to feel that it is time for some professionals to get involved here.

The people who are the most upset are those who have been here the longest, have built a learning program around the tools that were here, and who chose this site over the bigger players because of its unique qualities. The fundamental problem here is the notion that looking at the percentage of people who use a tool or whatever is the wrong calculus, because it doesn’t take into account your best customers, the ones who keep the site going. At the end of the day, if you just aim for the least-common denominator, you will end up no with no advantage over the bigger players, and you will get crushed by them.

I, like many people here, will stick around for a while no matter what, because we have huge numbers of words that are in long-term review mode, and it would be murder to recreate that. But I, for one, have already cancelled my paid account, and I know that others have too. The bigger problem is that Memrise is doing the opposite of what any sane business would do, which is keep its best customers happy, while trying to bring in new ones. It is screwing its base, while making its product no better than anything else out there. And while I hate some of the changes, my bigger concern is that it will cease to exist, and the tens of thousands of words and phrases I have learned will no longer be on a schedule for review that has been so helpful over the years.

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attention, irony! and sarcasm. Sort of a joke

memrise ceos come for a tradition of a capitalistic paternalistic “nanny state” and of “soft power” and “nudging”… which was what the gist of public policy in the UK as they were kids. Borders not to "satanic mills of Albion but to “the burden of … the psychologist and web developer”, who knows always better and after a condescending smile, kicks out those who disagree with the eternal wisdom of the government… it is simply a business model. I feel like … duh, that would be not “woke” to say it

end irony

I couldn’t agree more with you @ndiver.

It’s also rather frustrating that they won’t answer the why of the web behavior that now emulates the apps. Why can’t I go through the new words in one go? Why is everything so enormous on the screen? Why do I have to go through four steps to “relearn” a word I missed. Usually for me it’s a typo so rewriting it once is sufficient.

It seems to me that the memrise developers want to code what’s easy rather than what is the best design/behavior for serious language learners. While I may be wrong, it also doesn’t seem like the testers are actually language learners. Of if they are, they’re beginners.

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I also completly agree. I would love to go back to the old version, not only visually (everything is too large now), but because some of the features I really liked are gone now. Not everything is bad in the new version, but still the old one was better. And from what I am reading people just need options. For example to put on a timer or not, to use Mems or not. One has to agree that a beginner has different needs than an advanced learner. Also the features you need/like might depend on your learning patterns or the language that you try to learn. So people really need to be able to adjust the learning experience to their learning style.

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@BenWhately I don’t expect you to bring back the old website to the existing platform, but what about an open-source and stand-alone project? You said something about open-source in the December’s chat, what exactly did you mean?

By the way, can you have a dialogue with users not once a five years, but on a regular basis? We know you are busy, however everyone is busy, too.

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We would be very happy to pass the old site over to a group to run as an open source project ; but that group would have to show that they are really committed to making it work and have the requisite skills. Anyone who feels that they can put such a group together, please get in touch!

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@BenWhately An open source version sounds interesting. Actually the recent changes to the website has motivated me to go ahead and start writing my own language practice app. While at the moment, my goal is just to get something that is usable for me, I may release it for more general availability at some point. However if an opensource version of memrise became available, I might be inclined to use that. And also add features that I have felt memrise and other equivilent apps has always lacked. FWIW, my day job is software development.

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Could you give us a recap on what technologies were used to create the “old site”? What exactly implies the term “site” - the website, database, apps (iOS, Android), …?

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Ah well, no answer after 10 days. Did anyone write directly to Memrise and/or Ben and actually got a reply RE those “requisite skills”?

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I did not write anything myself get an idea of requirements. I have continued just writing my own software and it is in a usable condition for me. Nothing on github to share with others at this time.
I am not even using memrise at this point. I just keep an eye on the forum to see if anything changes.
However another thought for memrise is if open sourcing old versions of their software is not practical, may they could document their api. That way if others are unhappy with the memrise UI, they could just write their own UI and use memrise as the backend.

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