Blog / November 2009

  • 28 November 2009Amazon UK wishlist update

    A couple weeks ago I added a Javascript programming book to my Amazon UK wishlist. To my suprise it was ordered just in the next few days. Thank you!

    Someone also reminded me recently that there are very few items on the list :). So I was looking for classic programming books that I would really want to have despite all the information readily available online.

    I've seen many good recommendations for Regular Expressions Cookbook and just added it to the wishlist. If you'd like to buy me a gift instead of a PayPal donation, there's a great way to make a gift and help me build a better website :) Thank you!

    Thanksgiving Sale  30% OFF Basic, Premium & Premium PLUS Subscriptions! (Nov 13 - 22)
    JapanesePod101.com
  • 22 November 2009Reconnect issue in flashcard reviews

    There appears to be a small issue with the handling of reconnects in the flashcard review page.

    When the network connection is really slow, or lost altogether a "Reconnect" link appears on the top right of the page. When you click this link, sometimes it would send the answers twice which would move a card up two stacks instead of one (answering No twice has no detrimental effect). This would happen only when using the "Reconnect" link.

    Until I can do a proper update of the website, as a "hotfix" I have increased the timeout interval to 20 seconds instead of 5. You should rarely see a timeout with this setting, however it can still happen if you lose connection entirely (maybe on wifi, or mobile phone?) in that case please check this topic about the hotfix.

    PS: this weekend I have been busy writing code for a "build" tool that will improve the page load time, especially for the study pages (the flashcard review page is kinda slow to load, but only loads once for a review session, whereas the study page needs to reload entirely for each different character).

    This tool is absolutely essential for developing other websites such as Reviewing the Hanzi, by allowing to share user interface code between different applications.

    If you're into development or creating web pages, it's very similar to Sprockets. I needed something similar but running in php. If it comes out well I'm considering archiving it and putting it up somwhere for download so others can use or contribute.

    A nice side effect of the javascript concatenation is that as a single file all dependencies are solved, and you can use advanced code checking with Google's Closure Compiler. (which you can do without concatenation but then you have to figure out the more complex way of handling external references...).

  • 15 November 2009Sunday, November 15 update

    Today's update added a couple features and fixed a few issues with the refactored web site update from November 1. See changelog on the wiki.

    Most importantly, there was a display issue on the homepage. The reported number of expired cards did not use the local time zone setting that you can set in your Profile page. This had the effect for some users (depending on their timezone value and time of day), that the homepage would show a given number of expired cards, but the review page would show a different number, or no expired cards at all.

    The View/Edit Story feature now available on the flashcard review page isn't really new, but I think the greater number of users who did not try the test version of the refactored site and/or did not see the related topic on the forum would not have known about it. So I expect this to be a new feature for many users :) You will notice a new button on the review page. The underlined letter on the button indicates the shortcut key.

    View and edit stories straight from the flashcard review page

    The other feature is the flashcard export, which has been restored in the new site. You will find it in the Manage tab. You can now easily backup your data anytime you want.

  • 8 November 2009The Reviewing the Kanji Changelog

    From now on I will try to maintain a public changelog for each update of Reviewing the Kanji. You can already find a detailed list of changes for the major November 1 update.

    The goal of this page is to document all changes, including minor bugfixes and tweaks. Many of those are not really suited for posting on the site news (here), since they are not very interesting.. but if you have reported a bug on the forum, you can check there and see if it was fixed already, and if not, feel free to bump the topic in the forum or drop me an email ;)
  • 2 November 2009This weekend's major update, and today's fixes

    I hope you all enjoy the site update. I wish I had taken more time to document the changes ahead of publishing the site, and to give a little advance warning to those who use the GreaseMonkey scripts (they are updated thanks to woelpad!) but... I had promised myself to update the website this weekend, so I went ahead. I just didn't want to get another chance at procrastinating on it.

    The way to re-study the cards from the red pile ("failed cards") has changed. Essentially you get an extra review, and the ability to review just part of your failed stack. Please see this post for a better description.

    Today's fixes are described on the Website Updates wiki page.

    I will try to post a full description of the changes, but I may not have time until this weekend. This thursday and friday I will be at Fronteers 2009 in Holland, a conference for front-end web developers! Right after that I have a week's worth of holidays during which I had planned to do some work on Reviewing the Hanzi (Chinese version). I may end up doing more fixes to RevTK though.. we'll see.