Show "Tips and Notes" on mobile + Capitalised words spoil some answers
I have been using Duolingo for some time on my android phone, but recently I decided to do a few lessons on the PC. To my surprise I see there's a section called "Tips and Notes" on every lesson, full of useful information! I did not realise this exists, it would have been a huge help for doing the lessons. Why is it not in the mobile app? Now I have to use my phone's browser to read the "tips and notes" section, before I do the lesson on the app...
Also, I've noticed that in the lessons where you select words to form a sentence, the answer is often spoiled by one word being capitalised (so it naturally goes to the beginning). Here is my suggestion: have all words in lower case, and automatically capitalise whichever word you select first.
They have done tests where they take away the capital letter. It reduces usage, i.e. Duolingo's stock-in-trade, so for all intents and purposes it won't be happening. The app is more useful if you attempt the translation yourself before looking at the tiles anyway.
The Tips & Notes are supposed to be coming to the apps, albeit in abridged versions, but things that are supposed to be happening can take a very good while indeed in these parts.
People can value the sensation of progress more than actual progress ;) If it actually keeps them coming back, they may well over time achieve more than they would have otherwise. I very much suspect that over the average usage duration of a new Duolingo user the far and away biggest driver of how much they learn is how long they keep coming back (i.e. I do not expect that average duration is very high at all).
True. I've been at it for almost 230 days straight now (but DuoLingo's server problems killed my progress a couple of days ago), and the feeling of progress very much motivates you to keep going. And also to set a reasonable goal that you are able to maintain - I have 20XP/day and it's often just small enough that I do it, but sometimes I do a lot more.