Blog / January 2017

  • 29 January 2017Today's update

    • Restored ability to review distinct due piles (3+, 4+, etc) (click / tap the orange bars in the chart if you want to review well known cards before the recently added ones). #53

    • Fix bad link to the detailed flashcard list #50

    • Back button on Review Summary after a SRS review goes back to the SRS page, not the home page
    JapanesePod101.com
  • 26 January 2017Issues I am aware of

    Here are some issues I am aware of, that have been created on Github:

    • Restore ability to review distinct due piles (3+, 4+, etc) (ie. links in the SRS bar chart) #53
    • Make stars yellow on hover/click. #49
  • 25 January 2017The mobile / responsive update is live !

    I'm kinda tired but I wanted to update the website because it's taken so long!

    There are of course still areas to improve but I hope you'll find the experience MUCH better on your smartphones! No more zoom. There is a mobile optimized navigation pane. The study page layout is much better. The Restudy and Learned flow has been improved. There is a brand new landing page for new visitor, which I hope introduces the website much better. Sign out to see it and let me know what you think!

    Please note "Add to Home Screen" is not ready yet, but it is the goal eventually to be able to remove the browser bars so you get an app-like experience.

    When I started in November last year, I genuinely expected to be on my merry way just updating CSS and HTML. But soon I realized I had to catch up a LOT on modern Javascript, and the only way to go forward was to learn new tools and techniques. It was all worth it because the website has a new lease of life. I started writing Vue JS components, such as the mobile navigation (reduce the browser window size if you want to see it). The website also now builds with webpack 2 and Babel. Meaning I can finally use modern ES2015 Javascript to write better code.

    Compatibility

    In terms of compatibility to summarize, most people are on Chrome, Safari and Firefox. All these browsers should have no issue at all. Internet Explorer represents less than 3% of the users, and 96% of these are on IE11 which should be fully supported. IE10 is the minimum target. IE8 and IE9 are not supported, but represent literally 0.012% of the visitors (according to Google Analytics).

    In terms of mobile devices, my ideal target is 360px wide in portrait (iPhone 6). Most pages should work down to 320px. I can't realistically optimize for older devices because it's just overwhelming work, but you'll likely find the website usable anyway (and certainly a LOT more usable than before this update =)).

    Whew... I need a break

    I am going to take a well deserved rest from programming for a few days. I think I might create a social account but I'm not sure... Twitter, Facebook? I am also thinking about writing a more detailed blog post on Medium to highlight the changes. Keep an eye on the news!

    Thank you!

    Many thanks to everyone who's helped me with testing the mobile site particularly: Carlos, Torben, Toby, Mark, Ernir, Christian, faneca, Ellie. Special thanks to Ellie who contributed an SVG version of the Koohii logo (which should be sharper in low and hi dpi screens).

    Feedback and Bug Reports

    You can now follow Kanji Koohii development in all its gory details on Github. Have a look at planned NEXT items. For bugs and suggestions create an issue , or post in the Gitter feedback. You can do both with a simple Github account. You can also send me an email of course if you prefer.

    Finally we will have HTTPS encryption eventually, I hope before the end of February. I still need to research whether it's worth moving servers or just buy a multi-domain SSL certificate.
  • 22 January 2017"Not Secure" Thanks Google

    Thanks to the powers at Google, sometime very soon you will be notified by Chrome version 56 that the login page is "Not Secure". due to not implementing SSL.

    Oh well, I guess it's the kick I needed to finally move to a different web hosting. I will add SSL but it will take some time. I have to figure out which hosting to move to, and then moving the site will be quite a bit of work too.

    Update: maybe it's not worth the trouble moving servers. Presumably I could buy multi-domain SSL for 80 USD a year which isn't that bad. And I think the hosting is good overall. The main downtime people would see is simply the daily backups of the database that freezes everything for a minute or so. It's not ideal, but I prefer to ensure regular backups. Developing...
  • 21 January 2017Mobile visitors please use staging.koohii.com

    For smartphone and tablet users I recommend using the development version of the website at staging.koohii.com. It works much better! You can use the same account there.Just keep in mind if something breaks you can always go back to kanji.koohii.com (the "live" version as I call it). Please post feedback and bug reports to Gitter and / or Github issues.

    I'm looking forward to finally update the live site within next week! Then I will use feedback and issues to plan next changes.The development is as open as can be right now, you can see upcoming changes labelled NEXT on the issues list. (Note "NEXT" means next update, when they are cleared I will select another batch of next items and so on.).
  • 20 January 2017Redesigning the Shared Stories for usability

    I'm redesigning the Shared Stories list. See kanji-koohii/feedback on Gitter where I will post work in progress designs like that from time to time. Input very much welcome.
  • 17 January 2017On the bleeding edge

    Would you like to test the latest version of the website? The upcoming update is a significant update which improves the mobile experience a lot, as well as benefit desktop users too. For example the Restudy workflow has been improved, the design in general is cleaner and simpler, etc.

    To join in: (step 1) sign up on Github so you can post or comment on issues (bugs / features) (step 2) login the kanji-koohii/feedback room on Gitter with the same login you've just made for GIthub (so you only need one account for both). (step 3, optional) install the Gitter app on Android or iOS then you can follow updates easily from your phone or tablet.

    I'd like to get more users on Gitter who have a mobile device. I will post changes there, and from time to time ask to test a page, and report if it displays correctly, or if it's convenient to use on a smartphone, etc.
  • 16 January 2017What app to use for feedback with users?

    I just posted a question on the forum: Do you know a good chat app that would help me collect feedback as well as let me announce changes to the site for quick iterations? Let me know in this thread.
  • 16 January 2017'member when the bar chart was all isometric?

    Are you knowledgable about CSS, SVG and Javascript? 'member this codepen I posted some time ago demonstrating the Leitner bar chart with VueJS ? Well meolox is sad to see the isometric bars go, and I certainly am too!

    Update: thanks to faneca the "3D" Leitner bar chart lives on! It was originally made in SVG and lost in translation as I had to find solutions for mobile. Now it's back with some CSS. Plus, it can have a nice depth effect too on a smaller screen. See this picture and this CodePen, and 3D Leitner Boxes issue on Github!
  • 15 January 2017Mobile / Responsive Update feedback moving to Github!

    I am in the process of moving feedback (issues and suggestions) to Github! This will make it easier for anybody who wants to be involved to discuss changes, as well as keep track of things I'm working on.

    If you are motivated to review the mobile / responsive update just look for fabd on Github and you will find the Kanji Koohii project there as as well as the link to the "bleeding edge" version of the site in the README =)

    I am currently moving feedback to the "Issue" system on Github. So if you'd like to provide feedback now you just need a Github account, and then you can simply follow updates by "watching" the repository, as well as keep track of issues you posted yourself or subscribe to.

    Feedback so far is pretty positive and I am hearing that it works already quite well on smartphone for daily use. I find also that in many ways optimizing for smaller screens helped me to simplify areas of the site as well as refresh the design overall.
  • 13 January 2017Japanese Podcast and Streaming Audio Thread

    Thanks to gaiaslastlaugh's efforts one of the most visited threads on the Koohii Forum is now updated! The (New, Not-At-All-Outdated) Japanese Podcast and Streaming Audio Thread.