Virtual flash cards

Card Game

Article from Issue 248/2021
Author(s):

Anki brings a virtual flash card box to the desktop. Thanks to a useful collection of add-ons, you can adapt Anki to suit your needs, making it one of the most efficient learning tools.

The flash card is still one of the most effective methods for anchoring learning material in long-term memory. But instead of working with a physical index card box and decks of flash cards, today's students use computer programs. Anki [1], considered to be one of the most innovative learning programs for electronic flash cards, goes far beyond everyday needs and even offers a web-based counterpart.

Anki includes several convenient features that you won't get when shuffling through an old-school stack of note cards, such as built-in statistics to chart your progress. The program also lets you rate your success with individual cards, keeping the most difficult at the front of the deck for additional repetitions. The Anki: flashcard system also comes with a large number of add-ons that let you adapt the software to meet a wide range of learning needs. For learning foreign languages, Anki offers the ability to use different character sets, such as Chinese or Russian. Anki uses LaTeX to display formulas, making it ideal for higher mathematics. In addition, Anki can also handle multimedia content; unlike conventional flash cards, Anki can integrate videos, audio files, and images as learning content.

Installation

Anki is available in the repositories of all the common distributions. You can also download a tarball for 64-bit systems from the Anki website, which is recommended if your distribution's repos offer an older Anki version. To set up Anki, unpack the roughly 150MB tarball, which will add about 460MB of data to your hard disk. Then change to the newly created directory and install the package using:

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