Did shortcuts disappear?
I haven't logged on to Duolingo in a couple days and I've noticed I can't take a shortcut anymore. I also wasn't able to find any other discussions on this topic explaining what happened. It's kinda sad since with shortcuts, natives are able to send as many reports as possible and make the tree better for everyone. Of course, they're still able to do it by testing out each skill, but the shortcuts are definetly a simpler option. So.. why are they gone?
Like psionpete says, the checkpoints vanish if you've tried them three times. I had a similar issue because my iPad froze up on the second last checkpoint a couple of times, and I didn't realise there was a limit, and when I went to the test on my computer it had gone!
However, the other checkpoints are still there - the ones I've passed, and the last one which I'm about to pass. The checkpoints you don't have, I still have.
It's possible there's a technical mishap somewhere along the way, if yours have disappeared without you 'using them up', but at any rate, there hasn't been a mass deletion of checkpoints :)
Huh. That's weird, I've tried out a certain checkpoint for more than 10 times and it didn't disappear, up until yesterday. Why does it disappear after 3 attempts though? They could be used as a sort of benchmark to evaluate one's progress. Well, thanks for clearing that up for me :)
I don't know. I guess the limit is to stop someone brute forcing through a checkpoint they're not really ready to pass? But that's a best guess. Someone mentioned they made an announcement at some point, but I think that was before I was a regular.
If you reload the page without going back to the home page, I believe it doesn't count as a try, which may explain being able to take a test ten times, or you may just have been the lucky recipient of a bug!
eta: I have 3 left and I know I lost one - the first two I skipped in the initial test out, I've just passed the last one, and I'm as such as I can be from memory that I didn't lose another, so I feel fairly confident saying there are four checkpoints on a 'fresh' Russian tree.