Stroke-by-stroke handwriting feedback

Fluhkes

Member
I wonder whether stroke-by-stroke handwriting feedback, similar to Skritter or Lexikan, possibly in combination with Spaced Character Recognition, is a feature you might consider for a future version of Pleco to be used as a powerful learning tool...
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
I'm not really big on that sort of system, actually - I don't like the feedback of drawing a stroke and having it be rejected / disappear. It feels very awkward / frustrating - every user action should come with clear visual confirmation - and it's too easy to write the correct stroke and have it be rejected (or try several different strokes in the top left corner until once of them is accepted).

I do like the visual feedback in Skritter of morphing your strokes into the correct character - assuming they don't run right out and patent that (if it is even patentable - I think I may have seen a few other pieces of character training software using the same technique) that might be a nice thing to add to Pleco in conjunction with our handwriting recognizer or a differently-structured stroke order test system - but unless there's a ton of user interest I'd rather not add a feature where you draw strokes on a blank screen and they either show up or disappear depending on whether or not they're correct.
 

daniel123

榜眼
mikelove said:
I'm not really big on that sort of system, actually - I don't like the feedback of drawing a stroke and having it be rejected / disappear. It feels very awkward / frustrating - every user action should come with clear visual confirmation - and it's too easy to write the correct stroke and have it be rejected (or try several different strokes in the top left corner until once of them is accepted).

[...] - but unless there's a ton of user interest I'd rather not add a feature where you draw strokes on a blank screen and they either show up or disappear depending on whether or not they're correct.
I like the stroke by stroke feedback Scritter gives you. First off all it makes fun. Second it helps you really learning how to write being less frustrating. After about two or three wrong tries it shows me the next correct stroke and I it can shows me the correct result for a short time. This is very usefull at the beginning because it makes the beginning of learning a new character less less hurting.

I think when training hundrets (or even thousands) of characters with many strokes there is more kind of differentiation needed than just a flashcard was wrong or right (or unknown). Mostly I know something of it but it is not completely correct. At the moment this "knowing something" always would lead to "wrong". This makes less fun while learning and is more frusttrating.
I need something that helps me while I try to fill in. So it makes more fun to see the "small mistake" directly after I wrote the stroke than just waiting before I think I finished the whole (often long) character (often completely wrong).

Comparing Scritter for example with "Stroke Order" mode of Pleco: In Stroke Order I can see the character but I am not sure about the order. After filling in my assumed order I see I have chosen it wrong. There is nearly no learning effect. For example I often make more than one mistake. One mistake is based on the other. Any tool that help me directly while writing helps me to better remember it in the situation. The ideas of Scritter is IMHO really a big step.

I first studied Chinese just learning flashcards using Pinyin. After some time I saw that learning characters is important to improve the whole understanding of the language. Than I started to focus on training reading (and very few writing). But this is also restricted because so many characters look similar. Just when training to write Ican really learn how to distinguish. But I find myself training writing is a very very boring task. But when I used Scritter the first time it makes really fun.

The problem is just that I cannot use it on my mobile device. So any support by Pleco would be a great choice.

I think the problem is just that there a so many ideas what Pleco can do with new features helping us to improve our language power that implementing anything like stroke feedback is just one good idea of many other features. It is difficult to priorize because many users have their own focus.

Maybe you can write a feature list summary based on the wish list (arranged a bit by your own (consider complexity to implement and real benefit). Then you can let the users vote so that it helps you to get a better statisctic what features are most wanted.
 

mikelove

皇帝
Staff member
Good points. I suppose we could experiment with offering a similar sort of feedback in a way that's not quite so frustrating (to me at least) as Skritter's system; maybe we'd flash the outline of the character with the stroke it thought you were trying to draw in red, say. Certainly lots of possibilities here anyway.

We can certainly do some sort of an online feature list for 3.0, yeah - we ended up doing some things for 2.0 that hardly anyone actually uses, so it'd be a good idea to get some more detailed feedback this time.
 
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