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skishore

Inkstone: my free, open-source Chinese writing app

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Shelley

@avren In the first post of this topic there is a link to a free version, just click the word Inkstone that is underlined and you can down load an apk.

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abhoriel

I have a quick question: If you have two word lists active which have the same word in, what is the app's behaviour?

 

Being able to rewrite the current word (as practice basically) is a much needed feature!

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furiop

What about another feature: the app can read the clipboard; if we select & copy chinese text, we can send this text to the app, an study more and more the characters involved in a statement... until learned completely...

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skishore

Hey everyone! I'm sorry for the lack of updates. I've been really busy with many life events these past few months (all good, though..new city, new job, upcoming marriage, just very time consuming). I hope you all have been doing well too!

 

I don't have a new version of the app, but I do have one new development: I've completely extracted the handwriting UI from the rest of the app's code. What that means is that an Anki integration is now feasible if someone (@HerrPetersen?) wants to try it out. The handwriting library is here: https://github.com/skishore/inkstone/tree/library

 

@abhoriel If you include the same word from multiple word lists, it'll be added to the deck exactly once. It'll stay there until you disable all lists it's in.

 

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Matthias

Thank you very much @skishore for pulling out the logic, and congratulations on your new job! I got a new job and moved to a new city recently as well, so I can feel how busy you are.

 

With the library it should be straightforward to create an Anki plugin, maybe even so that it works with Ankidroid if the plugin just writes everything into a new card template. If I were still studying handwriting I would give it a try, but I stopped learning to write by hand pretty much the moment I found out I can take the HSK5 using pinyin and a computer keyboard. I appreciate your work nevertheless, maybe I'll come back to it someday.

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HerrPetersen

Hi skishore,  sorry for the late reply.  I am taking a break from Chinese as my new work is in South Korea and my language time goes into learning Korean. 

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flautert

Hi all,
I got this app 3 days ago and I like it a lot. But many most people said, a Redo button and Ban words would be a huge improvement.
Anyway, sometimes it happened that, after completing a character, I touched the screen in a way that, at the bottom of the characters, four icons appeared: a star, and a stop, play and pause buttons (I am not sure). When I clicked on the Stop the character would go red (as in an error), while the Pause would make it yellow. It happened like 6 times, I am not sure what is the expected behaviour.
Has it happened to any of you? Do you know how to make the icons appear?
Thanks!

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skishore

That's the "re-grade" feature - swipe up when a character is complete to override the automatic grading. It's...really well hidden, only mentioned in the help section.

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flautert

Excellent, thanks!

I went again to the tutorials but I still could not find it in the Help :oops:

What happens when we click on the blue star?

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skishore

That increases the spacing for the word by 4x, rather than the 2x that green does. It's a way to say "this was way too easy".

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CherrylS

I really like this app. It would be nice if you could add a delete button to delete words you don't want to learn.

Also it would be nice if it allowed me to keep writing the word until I got it 100% right.

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skishore

I've got some time to work on the app over this holiday. Rewriting and blacklisting words are the two most popular requests, so I should definitely get those two features done, along with a few bug fixes I've had in mind. I'll let you know when that update is ready!

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skishore

So, I have a question about the "rewrite word" feature that I wanted to get some opinions on.

 

Suppose that I get a word wrong the first time and want to rewrite it. After writing it correctly, what should its grade be? I see a few options:

  1. It should still be graded "red" / "forgotten", since it was wrong initially.
  2. It should now be graded "green" / "remembered", since it was written correctly.
  3. It should appear "green" / "remembered", but be scheduled as if it was "red" / "forgotten".

All of these options have some problems. 1 could look strange because the word was written correctly but is still marked wrong. On the other hand, 2 would result in poor scheduling, and 3 introduces "hidden state" that could confuse people. I lean towards 1 but would be okay with 2 as long as the "override the automatic grading" feature was more discoverable, which I plan to work on anyway. What do you all think?

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furiop
5 hours ago, skishore said:
  • 1 It should still be graded "red" / "forgotten", since it was wrong initially.
  • 2 It should now be graded "green" / "remembered", since it was written correctly.
  • 3 It should appear "green" / "remembered", but be scheduled as if it was "red" / "forgotten".

In my opinion 1 is OK: a further check, next time, can transform red in green. 2 is the second choice. Thank you for all! Furio

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skishore

I have a new version ready! It includes a few things:

  • "clear canvas" and "blacklist word" options, both accessible from the top of the writing page
  • A more prominent icon for changing the automatic grading (you can choose to hide it in settings)
  • Handwriting recognition fixes for 成 and a few more rare characters.

However, I ran into some problems while testing it. I actually don't have an Android phone at the moment, and while things work in the simulator, the deployment process wasn't as smooth this time around as it was before. If people are willing to test this build before I make it available more broadly, I'd really appreciate it!

 

If you installed the APK directly (not through Google Play Store), you can download the new version here:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/1k0ct4o51ub978a/inkstone-armv7.new.apk?dl=0

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furiop
5 hours ago, skishore said:

I have a new version ready! It includes a few things:

  • "clear canvas" and "blacklist word" options, both accessible from the top of the writing page
  • A more prominent icon for changing the automatic grading (you can choose to hide it in settings)

 

Hello! I tryed it on

- Google Nexus 5X (LG) Android 8.0.0

- Samsung Galaxy Tab A6 Android 7.0 (I installed it 2 times because there was a stop in downloading file 21)

 

All was OK.

 

Some note

- Rewriting word is OK (it is word driven and not character driven: your choice for word repeating is OK, single character has poor meaning)

- Blacklist is OK

 

Further note

Sometimes a student need to study only a subset of words of the level involved in a specific lesson. It is easy to do it if there exists a "whitelist" beside a "blacklist".

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大块头

This app is excellent. Thank you for creating it.

 

A random thought that occurred to me when studying today: Have you ever considered using some sort of machine-learning algorithm to grade the responses? The present grading algorithm works fine, but this seems like one of those scenarios where I think a neural network is supposed to work well.

 

Just food for thought!

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