[Request for Feedback] Clarify "Practice All Rem In This Document (Without Spaced Repetition")

There has been confusion about how the “Practice All Rem In This Document (Without Spaced Repetition”) option works, and we’re considering changing the practice options to the following:

1. Practice Rem in this document with spaced repetition
(Same as existing option)
2. Practice all Rem in this document (without updating spaced repetition dates)
(New option)
3. Practice all Rem in this document (and update spaced repetition dates)
(Same as existing option)

We are mainly considering including the 3rd option to avoid breaking existing workflows, but would prefer to remove it to simplify the interface. Would removing this existing 3rd option break anyone’s workflows?

(By the way - Longer term, we’ll design new spaced repetition algorithms that don’t need these workarounds.)

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The main reason we need #2 is because we would like to just browse the cards. Or maybe take a look at what our progress is so far, where we are weak, if the cards are all right, etc.
So perhaps koo “Keep it simple”, we could have a “Browse cards in order” option, that replaces #2 and is separate from the other two.

Also

Renaming #3 to just “Practice all rem” without the extra details (whether srs is updated or not) is going to be clear. Because you already have a “Browse” option.

The options I suggest (TL;DR):

  1. Practice the Rem in this Document
  2. Practice ALL the Rem in this document
  3. Browse ALL cards in order.

Note: #3 will still have active recall implemented. Just clarifying, since “Browse” may mean that you’re not practicing.

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Actually using #3 was breaking my workflow (at least the last time I used it) :stuck_out_tongue: Since it allows you practicing cards multiple times a day and each time crediting the full schedule increment you could end up with a next due date of multiple months/years just from a single day of pactise. So it should

  1. the next increment from today and not the next due date actually isn’t this fixed elegantly by 2. as well?
  2. grant smaller increments the more recent the last practice was
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You can remove 3 tbh because for me, it only messed up my workflow.

And a few additional requests on this topic: 2 should only have a right or wrong rating because four only make sense when you are using srs. And the second thing is that RemNote sometimes forgets your progress after a while or when moving between devices. Hopefully this could be changed because it‘s annoying when you go through almost are your cards the night before and then when you wake up to learn the rest, you‘re back to zero.

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I’d suggest a mix of #2 and #3 where the spaced repetition dates will only be updated if I press “forgot”.

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We’re going to change the spacing algorithm to handle “early” responses differently. When you input an “early” response now, this will effectively override the previous response. This has a few effects:

  • Repeatedly interacting with the card will no longer cause the intervals to explode
  • For the Anki-SM2 scheduler, the next scheduled interval will be sensitive to how many days early you interacted with the card, as this scheduler looks at the more precise delays themselves. For example, practicing the card 2 months vs 1 day before the scheduled time will yield different intervals.
  • You’ll still get “credit” for practicing these cards in the “Practice all Rem in this document, even if they’re not scheduled to appear yet” option.

We’re unsure if we should also include one of the following two options:

  • A “Browse cards” mode that displays your cards in order with “left” and “right” buttons, but no feedback buttons.
  • A “Practice without spaced repetition”, mode that has only a “remembered” and “forgot” option, and doesn’t affect the long-term spacing options at all.

Would you find utility in one of these two extra options? I see that they could be useful for “lower-stakes testing” or “checking my cards” activities, but also don’t want to cause confusion.

6 Likes

Including “Practice without spaced repetition” mode not affecting the srs would actually be beneficial imo. My vote goes for one of these 2 options to be included.

2 Likes

Seems like both of those options are better served by Hannes’ Active Recall at the moment.

The most future-proof way would be to move the “practice rem in this document with spaced repetition” button to the top of the menu and add menu for “special practice options” below that, which you can populate with as many options as you like and let people pick.

5 Likes

I second this @Martin! The ability to Practice REMS in order without spaced repetition will/would be great for cramming. AHAH I know… but we all need to do it one time or another.

And if you add the feature this way only the ones who wanted to use it would use it! Currently in Anki we already can do it!

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With regards to this…

Side note: This entire comment assumes that the “Practice without spaced repetition” mode mentioned above is the same as # 2. mentioned in the original post.

I would prefer the “Browse cards” mode, but I would also like to have the option to choose between whether I want to see the cards in order or at random (shuffle). I agree with @UMNiK (his mention of “special practice options” in an earlier comment).

I think the two options cater to two similar, yet different kinds of users (50/50).

  • For the user that knows their material and is “just checking” — the “Browse cards” mode, wherein they simply go through the cards (not strictly for self-testing).
  • For the user that isn’t feeling too confident or doesn’t know ALL the material — the “Practice without spaced repetition” mode, wherein they are able to rate their cards (remembered/forgotten) + intervals aren’t modified → By the end of the session, the user is able to identify what topics they must focus on more than others.

Put these two together, and call it “Browse cards”. That way, since the interaction won’t affect the long term SRS, we can effectively browse the cards with left and right arrows, maybe tweak the scheduling for each card (?) and maybe even have something like a gallery view of what’s up (!). The browse option should be a browse option, but the forgot, and remembered button will be nice to have. Like @Anisha said:

So why not merge them as one. It’s pretty easy to do the “Just Checking” and the “I wanna see every card I have here because I am not confident” together using the “Browse” thing.
Just keep it separate from the regular practice this document (with SRS) and practice ALL the rem in this document (Without SRS but still changing the scheduling). That’s what confused us in the first place.

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Related: Study a folder without affecting SRS

Suggestion:

Actually you can change the third option to something like review ahead by ____ (day/s) and update the spaced repetition dates. Sometimes, when i want to take a day off i review cards a day before.

Please add the lower 2 options

@Martin, could you clarify if the option now available “Practice all of these Rem, even if they’re not scheduled to appear yet” updates the spaced repetition dates of the cards? Id est, is it the equivalent to the 3rd option of this post Practice all Rem in this document (and update spaced repetition dates)?

For me, keeping this 3rd option is very important. I would use it to force me to review all the content of the document, but ensuring that this early reviewing of some cards will postpone some of my future effort; it makes much more sense than simply reviewing all cards without updating SR dates. Why would I, exempli gratia, want to review in two days again a card with an 8 months interval that I reviewed two days in advance? I would not be expending the minimum effort to the task (intended by the whole SR conception).

What I still miss is the ability to practice all Rem in the document in the order they appear in the document. This was very difficult (almost impossible) to achieve in Anki, because of its unlinked structure (single cards not related); and it should be very easy to achieve in RemNote, using the advantage of having and organized document, but it is still not an option!

It is very common to study by using a number of questions following the order of exposition of the content in a book or article. The idea is to follow the reasoning of the book itself, and getting used to how the book develops the whole concept. This requested fuction would emulate this and allow the possibility of performing this kind of studies.

This is discussed in a separate topic.

If your exam is tomorrow and you got enough time to review all your cards, you might as well use that opportunity. This way you can make sure that you are well prepared and during the exam you will also be able to recall the answers more quickly.

Also a comment about learning in order: I’ve seen it being requested pretty often but I personally don’t really understand why that is. An issue I experience with learning things in order is that I passively start to memorise the answers based on the order on not the front side of the flashcards. This for example happens to me when going through a list of vocabulary multiple times in the same order. Also for that same example: vocabulary lists in schoolbooks often group similar words together and when learning in order I can often guess the answer based on the previous answer.

I totally agree. I just think it is much better to alter the future review dates (for remembering in the long term), considering that your actual review (in advance) would permit you to postpone the next review of these cards.

About learning in order, it would be like re-reading a content, but using active recall instead of just passively rereading. In my point of view, it is much better for learning than just reading the document (Rems) again.