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https://www.duolingo.com/Dante_Cardoso

Fix the "Practice all skills" and "Practice weakest words" system

Dante_Cardoso
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A bunch of words in my vocabulary are weakening, but they never appear when I "Practice all skills" or "Practice weakest words", while some sets of words appear again and again and again. Sometimes a set of weakened words belongs to a single lesson, but when I practice the lesson only a single word appear. So, the only way to recover the word strength is practicing them one by one in the vocabulary section, what is quite annoying, time consuming and inefficient. Please, fix it.

5 years ago

53 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/tatou
tatouPlus
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Thanks everyone for staying on top of this! We finished a fix yesterday and rolled it out to several accounts, including everyone who spoke up in this thread.

Please test "practice all skills" and "practice weakest words," and let us know if you actually get your weakest words more often now (these are words highlighted in blue in translate challenges, and displayed on a scroll at the end of the practice session).

Also let us know if you experience any other new weirdness. The fix was pretty complex (sorry it took so long) and we want to make sure we didn't break anything else in the process...

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lizard.King

Thank YOU ALL for the hard work and for making Duoling better everyday!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/willpalmer13

Thanks for all your hard work.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/IG88
IG88
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Yes, it seems to be fixed! Thank you very much.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/IG88
IG88
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Well, now I'm seeing words I've never seen before added to my French practice and my word count has increased since this morning or last night even though I haven't made any more progress.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_pinkodoug_
_pinkodoug_
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I don't know if you saw my experiment that I described elsewhere in this discussion yesterday afternoon, but I'm curious whether the changes you describe were in place at that time or not (around 17:00 CDT). At the time, I did 3 "Practice weakest words" sessions, and got 26 of my 27 worst Spanish words (3/4 bars that had degraded from full in the previous two days). The one that was not given seems to be a bug which I've described elsewhere in this discussion as well as in bug report feedback. I had a similar result with one practice session I did with my German vocabulary at the time, getting 9 of my 11 weakest words.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tatou
tatouPlus
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Yes, your experiment was probably only a few minutes after we deployed the fix. :)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/fer84
fer84
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Really cool for working on this! If you need another beta-tester, I'd volunteer !

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_pinkodoug_
_pinkodoug_
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Cool. I rarely use the "practice weakest words" option, preferring to practice individual words, so I had no real context for my results to know whether it was just a lucky streak or what. The fix seems to be working exactly as one would expect!

Thanks!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mptmpt
mptmpt
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I was curious what this blue frame was! Another mystery solved ;-)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/IG88
IG88
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Yeah, I love this site, but to me its most frustrating aspect now with its best practice options non-working is how difficult it is to review most of what you've learned and the total failure of the strength/decay system for some users like me. The more vocabulary you gain and the more lessons you complete, the harder it becomes to effectively practice.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nicktaylor3

Newspapers and books are apparently the only objects in Germany.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Lizard.King

Oh my... Finally I see people complaining about this! It seems french people only need milk and bread, only use coats and they don't do anything but drink and eat :P

The idea behind the "practice all skills" button is great. But I'm really tired of practicing the same sentences over and over and over... I get it's difficult to develop the logic so it proposes exercises based on your weak words... but why not just do a random selection over all your completed lessons? The way it is today, it's like there's only 30-40 sentences and words and they are repeated over and over until it makes me want to close the page.

Please, do something about this since it's a key functionality for all languages and students. I volunteer myself if you need help. Have a lot of experience in IT and web development.

Besides this, thank you very much for all your hard work and the amazing site you're creating!

Martin

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Luis
LuisPlus
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Thank you for bringing this up. We're working on fixing it and it should be better by Friday.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_pinkodoug_
_pinkodoug_
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In a similar vein, I've encountered word forms which show up on my vocabulary list from time to time as degraded, yet they're never presented in any practice sessions - even when practicing the word individually. I've reported several of these on various occasions, but the reports haven't been addressed yet. Is it possible for this related issue could get some attention as well? Two recent examples that I've seen are the "llegan" form of the Spanish verb "llegar" and one of the two listed forms "buscar" for the Spanish verb "buscar".

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/weedleburd

If I get "my sister is old but I am young" one more time!!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mike.mcg
mike.mcg
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I have the same problem, for me one of the words that come up all the time is "manteau", which is a pretty basic word that I've known for a long time. At the end of a practice, it tells me that I've strengthened "manteau" to full gold bars, but when I check in my vocabulary to verify that, "manteau" still only has two gold bars. I try to click "Remove this word from practice" (because I know it perfectly), but it refuses to do so. There is obviously something wrong with the program, so I hope that this gets fixed soon so I can use the practice options again...

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Fuente

Gotta agree with you. I've gotten the same basic words over and over but the more complicated stuff doesn't seem to get touched.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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To each their own. I love practicing my week words one by one. I do not find it annoying, time consuming or inefficient. It enables me to target the most weakest words. But, I do see your point. The logic of the program should be designed in such a way that it would work either way.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dante_Cardoso
Dante_Cardoso
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You say it now you have less than 500 words learned. Wait until you reach 600 while 50 are decayed.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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agreed, friend

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_pinkodoug_
_pinkodoug_
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Not necessarily. I've got over 1000 words learned with 20 or so decayed, yet I prefer to practice the weak ones individually. I agree, however, that the problem with "Practice All Skills" / "Practice Weakest Words" is something that definitely needs to be fixed asap for those that prefer not to do it that way.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Dante_Cardoso
Dante_Cardoso
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Maybe it the problem is relative to some languages.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/_pinkodoug_
_pinkodoug_
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Quite possibly. I haven't used the "practice weakest words" option for Spanish in quite a while. As an experiment, I just made a list of all of my words which had degraded from full bars (27 in total) and then did three "practice weakest words" exercises. The first exercise presented me with 9 of my 10 weakest words. It inexplicably skipped "buscar" which was my 6th weakest word according to the strength sort on the vocabulary list. The second exercise presented me with the 11th to 19th weakest words on that list. The third exercise gave me the 20th to 27th plus the 8th again (9 words per exercise seems to be the limit). The 6th weakest word was never presented, but all my other degraded words are are now full bars.

This would seem to indicate that the "practice weakest words" options works, more or less, as one would expect for Spanish.

Edit to add: I just repeated this experiment for German (doing one practice session only this time), and the exercise presented me with 9 of my 11 weakest words. It skipped two forms of words that were practiced in other forms during the session, so perhaps their selection algorithm gets a little hinky when multiple forms of a word appear closely to each other on a list of weakest words.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mptmpt
mptmpt
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It is much faster and easier if you open words in a new tab (or window). I used to do it all the time, 50 to 100 words a day go very fast like that, les than an hour actually.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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yes, I do that too

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/liamtbrand
liamtbrand
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The fix seems to be working! Thanks guys xD

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ancianarica

This is the single worst problem with the practiced system. I have now reached crown level 567 which is as far as possible. So the entirety of the language is available to practice. But when I go to the practice function I get the same few items over and over again.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cah75

I agree completely with this, if possible, this section of the program should be develop further. I love this program so much and I know it must be difficult to keep up with all the suggestions or demands that everyone throws at you. But this section of the program does need to be strengthen, so it captures everything that you have learned to date. Nonetheless, thank you for developing what I personally consider one of the best online language learning programs around.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SaxyLady
SaxyLadyPlus
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I know I'd be able to better practice if more sentences were added to the mix. After awhile I just end up memorizing the sentences without really knowing why they are structured a certain way.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johnw4
johnw4
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I am having the same problem in Spanish. The only lessons I get are about the word 'parece' or it seems. Can you please make the system move on to test me on other skills. Thanks.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/karint
karint
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Hi johnw4 - what a beautiful golden tree you have!:) Unfortunately our fix yesterday does not seem to fix things for you - sorry about that. We'll take a look and see what might be causing this. Thanks so much for your patience!

Update: We found what the issue is and it'll hopefully be resolved soon (it has to do with you being too good at Spanish, haha). I'll send you a note on your stream when it's fixed:) Thanks!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/johnw4
johnw4
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Thanks for the compliment karint. I've done some more exercises today and although I get asked 'parece' questions I also get a mixture other others too. So thanks for fixing that bug...and getting back to me so quickly!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/karint
karint
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Great to hear! Thanks for the update:)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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Karint since this fix, I am having trouble with practice. I like to practice words, one at time. Since this fix I get advanced grammar that is way down my tree and therefore I am getting all my answers wrong. Please help!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tatou
tatouPlus
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jfgordy -- I looked into this, and it appears to me that "Practice all skills" is trying to give you grammatical concepts you learned (for example, the "Prepositions" and "Dates & Time" skills). But until this recent bug fix, we hadn't actually been getting you to practice them for the past 2-3 months.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jfGor
jfGor
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Thank you for the reply. i do not do practice all skills. I practice decayed words, one at a time. It does not give me grammatical concepts that I have learned. Quite the opposite, as I get grammar that should be down the tree.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cestmarrant

I'm learning German, and I'm getting so frustrated with the practice sessions. it seems to focus mainly on the words wasser and brot, over and over and over and over in virtually every practice session i do. i wouldn't even mind if they changed it to, say, ente and spinne - but REALLY, i'm an expert on wasser and brot - truly i am! can this be fixed? other than that, i'm finding the course really good.

3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/sasha-jen

I've started 5 Welsh skills and golden 2 (greet 1 & 2). I'm also on level 1 of work 1 as my weakest skill right now. The several times I've used practice it's 100% been from work 1.

What's going on here? Why is there a "practice" button when then says it includes words that you've learnt if it is the same as choosing a skill to specifically learn? I was under the impression that it would literally be mixing everything I've done. A greet sentence after a present 2 followed by a work 1 and then a greet again etc.

In fact, I would expect the skills I've golden to come up on practice more so that to keep up with all my golden skills with one practice session while skills I've just started on level one are the skills I have to manually specify a whole practice session into.

1 month ago

https://www.duolingo.com/bolletjeb

It does not seem to be like this in all languages. I get so many unknown words that I can hardly finish any of my "Practise all skills"...

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Libpor

I'm positive the practice system never worked, and it seemed to have degraded before I even got here. When commenting on the account conversion that took place I already figured that out. On the other hand, I stay to practice the massive list of German sentences with accurate translations, I don't spend more than a few minutes to wonder and second guess the content wrapper.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BobWeisenberg
BobWeisenberg
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This is great. I make a point of alternating each new lesson with a round of vocabulary practice, so this fix is really important to me. Thank you.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo
olimo
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Today all skills practice is for some reason more difficult to me than usual. Maybe it really shows me my weakest words and phrases now? :-) I hope it won't stop.

I encountered a funny thing today: http://i.imgur.com/hD1Psot.png

I got only one question in timed practice of all skills.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mptmpt
mptmpt
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I have seen the same thing several times in single word practice, not timed practice.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/olimo
olimo
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Single words are another story. This was a "Practice all skills" session. Even if all my words were equally strong (which is not the case), Duolingo could give me 20 random sentences.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/mptmpt
mptmpt
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Even in single word practice it is a bug, because you have one heart and one question, so no mater how wrong the answer is, the word gets strengthened and you get the 2 points. So I wrote it here because there is probably a connection between the two bugs.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/karint
karint
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Hi olimo - I think this relates to johnw4's issue. We'll take a look into this once we're in the office tomorrow. Thanks for the report!:)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Allinuse
Allinuse
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More than just a few extra given seconds after a correct answer would be appreciated and a little more time to start with. Or maybe an option in personal settings where we could adjust the time ourselves.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dnovinc
dnovinc
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report on practice weakest words (PWW)

I use PWW in the vocabulary of the skill I want to strengthen. It actually goes first through all the full strength words (I first thought it goes by the number of times I have seen a specific word but it actually seems random).

9 words per practice and when I finish with all those then I suppose it goes for those weakest ones I wanted to practice all along. (I only used PWW three times = 3 * 9 = 27 /56 words, since I was too lazy to go all the way until last 10 i wanted to practice. same happened with a different skill)

side note: Practice skill also goes only through those full strength words, but it shows randomly those words I practiced moments ago while PWW doesn't do that.

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tatou
tatouPlus
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Hi dnovic, we are experimenting with a fix for this right now, so I added you to the group of users in the experiment. Please try practicing again and letting us know if the problem is fixed for you! :)

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dnovinc
dnovinc
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Great, problem fixed :) thank you

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SNAH0

a

3 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/JackMcCoyDA

The only way to do this would be to make the lessons longer, which would make sense.

5 years ago