Tuesday, March 08, 2005


Version 0.2.0

So I was going to update this as I did work between releases, but that hasn't happened. So, since version 0.2.0 is out, here's what I've been doing:


There are now three question asking modes. There's random, in order (the least recently asked question is always picked) and autolearning. The auto-learning mode is the snazziest. It's loosely based on the Leitner System. The idea is that you have five boxes. All of the cards start in the first box. Every time you get a card right you move it up a box. If you get it wrong, it goes back into the first box. Once you have them all in the fifth box, you're done. Most programs based on this system show you the individual boxes. I just prioritize stuff so that cards from lower boxes get picked more often, and so that questions that were asked longer ago get picked more often. The box picked and the card chosen from that box are still done at random though.

I abstracted the question selection process, so it's super easy to add any other modes now, if I ever think of them. Now I just need to abstract the question asking process so that I can make the interface match the selection mode, and allow for typing in of answers, multiple choice, etc.

Build System

Using MonoDevelop as my build system sucked. This release has my first crack at using the GNU autotools. I cribbed pretty heavily off of muine and blam, because autoconf and automake aren't really designed to work with Mono (they are pretty C-centric), so things are still a bit rough around the edges, but it's a start. Now you have configure, make clean, make install, make uninstall, and all that nice stuff.


I'm using gconf to store preferences now. GConf# is pretty snazzy, because it makes it super easy to have preferences auto-apply and all that.


Not much work here. You can sort the questions in the editor view. There's a preferences dialog to handle the question selection mode. That's pretty much it.

Thursday, February 10, 2005


First Release

Just made the first release ever (0.1.1). All of the basic features are there. You can create lists of questions, save lists, open saved lists, and have it ask you the questions one by one. It isn't very smart about asking the questions. Right now it just picks them randomly and makes sure it never asks the same one twice in a row. A smart question chooser thingee is at the top of my lists of things to do. Also, if you save while it's asking questions, weird things may happen. It'll definitely lose your progress since the last time you were in the edit mode, and worse things could happen. I'll have to fix that.

Check out the new release on the sourceforge website.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005


It works!

Score. Everything I need to make the thingee work is done. You can now create, save, and load questions. You can ask questions and see the answers. The statistics aren't updated right now, but that's coming. Then, I need to figure out an algorithm to make it ask questions more intelligently.

Asking a question:

And the answer:

Sunday, February 06, 2005



I've been working on a flashcards app for a few weeks now. I'm writing it in Mono (an opensource reimplimentation of C# that also includes class libraries for Gtk, Gnome, and other Linuxy stuff). The idea is that it'll allow me to learn Mono and Italian at the same time, because I'm trying to learn Italian in time for my semester in France this summer.

Anyway, since I got tired of coding, I thought I'd document my progress a little bit, for posterity.

The main window:

This screenshot shows the edit mode of the app. Right now that's the default mode the app starts in. Clicking the "Start" button in the toolbar switches to the currently unimplemented question asking mode.

Adding a card:

So far the only things that've been implemented are adding cards, removing cards, editing cards, and saving the list of cards into an XML file. Once I add the open command I'll at least be able to start compiling lists of questions.

The next step is opening decks of cards. Then, a first stab at question mode. Once I do that, I'll probably start working on my vision for the final interface, where the app keeps track of and lists all of your decks of cards instead of just letting you work with one deck at a time. By the time I finish that I'll probably be in France anyway.

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