gold coin banner blocking my view
Wulfgar 27165 24656 3914
I don't think the gold coin banner is so important that it should be allowed to block the text when I'm reading. It's bad enough that the reading space was significantly reduced in the last update, so please make the banner stop covering the text.
February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    Ah, the Pokemon power up bar. The least useful part of the website covering a large part of the most useful part.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    If you don't like Spatterson's solution there's at least one alternative. Maybe you've tried this, but you can see more of the text by simply reducing the font size. On Windows the shortcut is "Ctrl -". It doesn't fix the empty space on the sides, but at least you can see more text at a time.

    @ColinJohnstone I find the Pokemon power up bar more useful than some lessons...
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ kcb

    Maybe the Pokemon bar was covering the useful parts of those lessons.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @Colin I doubt it since I can still read every line of text. My avatar's bar isn't so big.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    So you genuinely prefer the tunnel vision approach they have gone for over the wide-screen approach of spatterson's update?
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @Wulfgar - Thanks for the feedback on this. We're making some updates to the Lesson page that should improve the look and feel on mobile devices, and will continue to make improvements here.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @Colin I don't think you've asked a fair question. But yes, I do prefer the LingQ lesson page as is. Having said that, if I'm simply reading a lesson I go to the print lesson page. If I need to look up a word I go back a tab and find it in the LingQ list.
    February 2014
  • Wulfgar 27165 24656 3914
    @jolanda - thanks, but I'm trying to get LingQ to fix this
    @kcb - I need big text size due to mediocre eyesight. And I can't see every line of text. The pokemon settles over a couple of lines and won't budge. It used to be a rare occurrence, but now it's almost every lesson
    @alex - I'm using safari on my laptop, not a mobile device
    February 2014
  • jolanda 38178 23820 13845
    @Wulfar

    "but I'm trying to get LingQ to fix this"

    sure!
    but in the mean time really it is a big favour for your eyes.

    j:-)
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ kcb

    "Having said that, if I'm simply reading a lesson I go to the print lesson page. If I need to look up a word I go back a tab and find it in the LingQ list."

    I do this sometimes when I am rereading lessons I have already read a few times. So you don't really like the highlighting stuff in the text?

    Anyway, it seeems to me that the reason the Pokemon power up bar and all the other wasted space in the reading interface doesn't annoy you is that normally you don't actually read within the reading interface.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @Colin Yep basically. If I read a lesson, I lingq my words after having read through it on the print page. If I have no plans to read the text, I will go from lingq to lingq and then new word to new word without reading more than a few sentences when I need context. I'm not going to force myself to read stuff I don't want to and I enjoy mining new words in this way. The power ups make the process feel just a bit livelier somehow. I can see how they'd be distracting if you were reading something long, but I've never read long texts on the lesson page.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    I think the solution is very simple. The Pokemon power up bar should be in the dashboard and not covering the text. The lower section of the dashboard isn't particularly useful anyway.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    I agree it would solve the power up issue. But I feel there are many other more important things to fix and one of them is that very dashboard. Others are even more critical, like all of the ones inducing instant new user bewilderment. I feel that so many are turned off before they can give the site a chance. It makes me wonder how I stuck it out. Probably having some knowledge of Spanish beforehand made it less overwhelming. Plus I had heard people on youtube recommend it. Plus I'm pretty hardcore into learning languages. Come to think of it, it was inevitable for me. Other people, not so much.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    What do you think is wrong with the dashboard?
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @Wulfgar - Yes, my apologies. What I meant to say was that we're currently working on improving the minimized view, but we are also looking at improving other aspects of the lesson page as well.

    @ColinJohnstone, kcb - Thanks for the feedback. In the end, everyone uses the site a bit differently, which means we can't make things work perfectly for everyone. That being said, we've got some exciting changes planned for the lesson page (beyond updates to the minimized view) that should make it easier for everyone to use.
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @alex Always exciting to hear there are changes brewing.

    @Colin This list is going to sound harsh, but I really do love this site. And as I said before, there are other problems I find more critical.

    In general
    -Not customizable at all (size, what shows, where things are).
    -Cluttered
    -Confusing for newbies
    -Many of the things that contribute to clutter are, in fact, pointless. Oh and they are also confusing for newbies.

    New words list page
    -No practical use other than scanning the list for a word.
    -Shows up by default

    Lingq list page
    -Clicking a lingq from the lingq page goes to lingq definition and word on page, but not feasible to go through that list and edit (all better done from vocab page after selecting the lesson in dropdown, but then you don't have the text)

    Lesson Info page
    -Useless to me

    When selecting a blue word
    -Not clear for newbies that selecting a definition actually makes a lingq
    -Not clear for newbies that poor Google Translate/user definitions aren't Lingq endorsed definitions
    -Not clear for newbies that a pencil stands for edit (other places on this website it means "Writing" "Post and Submit for Correction")
    -Some of the definition isn't visible on long entries. Confusing for newbies.

    When editing a lingq
    -Phrase box is pointless. I can read the whole sentence in the text. Why display a fragment of it beneath the word? Confusingly pointless.
    -Example sentences from other lessons only make things more cluttered
    -I don't care about other examples from other lessons
    -Blue popup window is in the way and contributes to clutter. Sometimes shows previous definition.
    -Ask a Tutor line is misleading, not to mention useless for me.
    -Flag dropdown is confusing to newbies. Not everyone associates a flag with a language, especially when so many apply to a language. Not clear to newbies what the flag is even doing there.
    -Status 4 = check mark, so why have both? Cluttered.
    -Tags...I tried using them, but they're pointless.
    -What is the + button anyway? Oh you can add a second hint. Pointless. Cluttered. Confusing for newbies.

    Summing up, pointless and cluttered and confusing for newbies. And now for the library...well, I think you can generalize at this point.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    Wow, what a list. I guess I will write my own tomorrow when I am on a computer with a keyboard instead of typing with a phone.
    February 2014
  • Administrator
    steve 7243 161 55542
    It is difficult to strike a balance between functionality that some people use, and simplicity. "One man's meat is another man's poison" goes the saying. I can only comment on how I use the site. I am sure that there are countless different ways of using the site. I am sure I have left a few things out but to comment on kcb's list;

    Introducing the option to customize things would add complexity and might make things more confusing.

    I often edit or even change my sample phrase, which then appears on my Flash Card, or on the LingQ widget whenever it shows up again in another text. I review them and often edit them when I review words in the Vocab section. So to me they are not useless, but quite useful.

    I find example phrases very useful for getting the hang of how words are used, and especially now that there is text to speech for each example phrase. I am disappointed when a LingQ does not generate enough example phrases.

    I use Tags to collect similar grammar patterns, or useful connector words (therefore, although, in my view etc.). When they stopped working properly we had a lot of unhappy LingQers, so I am not the only one. I would like to see the Tags on our Flash Cards, and other have asked for this.

    There are people who use the "ask the Tutor" function quite regularly.

    Yes there are things that could be improved, functions added, functions taken away, design improved etc. We appreciate all the feedback. There are also glitches from time to time, caused by a variety of internal and external reasons. We are working to provide a learning environment and community that satisfies a variety of users with a variety of needs and preferences.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ Steve

    Have you tried spatterson's Greesemonkey script? I would be interested to know what you think.
    February 2014
  • Administrator
    steve 7243 161 55542
    What is it?
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @steve I get that you have limited resources, etc. I don't buy that customizable makes it more complex (at least from the user's perspective). Newbie's don't go rooting around in the settings page, so if you put the additional options there it wouldn't make them more confused.

    I'm just happy you guys are constantly trying to improve the site. Keep doing that and I'll keep being satisfied.

    PS I was going to respond harshly to that guy you deleted. Perhaps it's better you got rid of him.
    February 2014
  • Administrator
    steve 7243 161 55542
    kcb, don't assume that your observations fall on deaf ears.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @kcb - By the way, regarding the customizability vs. complexity, the "+" button next to the hint is a perfect example of this. It was added to give learners the option to add multiple hints (more customizability), but in your list above you noted that it is clutter. Adding options to customize the layout of the page may be good for you, but for someone else they may not need this at all and see it as unnecessary.

    Not that either of these are wrong, but they're different and each has its pros and cons, and that's always the challenge :)
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @alex My point is that more customization does not necessarily mean more confusion. Adding options to the settings page is completely different than adding buttons in the dashboard. Each needs to be evaluated on its own.

    My list above is my personal response to Colin's question and the bullets were not meant to be direct suggestions for change. Of course, I certainly wouldn't mind such changes :)
    February 2014
  • [[donhamiltontx]] 18662 45031 7145
    @kcb "-Status 4 = check mark, so why have both? Cluttered."

    As I understand it, clicking 4 means you know the word, but the word will still show up in your SMS words to know.
    Clicking the check mark means you know the word, and the word will not show up in your SMS words to know.
    February 2014
  • [[galina]] 43 1070
    That's right @donhamiltontx!
    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @don I don't know anything about SMS, but I'll take your word for it. Still the distinction isn't immediately clear for new or, in my case, longtime lingqers.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ kcb

    I enjoyed reading your list. I think you are a bit harsh on a few points. A lot of the things you call useless are used by others. Here is my own take on these features.

    New words list page and Lingq list page
    - I never use them and don't know how I would. Could be useful for others I guess

    Lesson Info page
    - I always check it for the percentage of new words in the document before reading the lesson. Other than that, I never look at it and don't know what is on there.

    When selecting a blue word
    - This is very confusing for newbies. It took me a while to work out that the user hints are not dictionary definitions. I was so appalled at how terrible they were, that I initially gave up on the site and went to use ***.
    - I don't use the pencil but maybe other people might find it useful.


    When editing a lingq
    - I never use the phrase box and I never look at the phrases. As I understand it, a lot of other people do, so clearly not pointless.
    - I never look at the example sentences, but probably other people find them useful. However, I notice that the example sentences are usually the last thing to load when I select a LingQ, which makes me wonder if they are slowing down the reading interface.
    - What is the blue popup window?
    - I never use Ask a Tutor but lots of people do, so not pointless. I think it is misleading. It actually leads to asking a question in the forum, so it should be 'Ask in Forum'.
    - I have noticed the flag dropdown and have no idea what it is for. I notice that when studying Russian, while it is usually the British flag, it is sometimes the German flag, and I have no idea why.
    - The check mark is misleading. It looks like it is meant to be used to make existing LingQs known (and by that I mean genuinely known, not just status 4 LingQs). Instead, it appears to do nothing when you click it, and it is not until you become an expert at the inner workings of the website that you work out it has something to do with some sort of SRS or something.
    - I use tags. They are not pointless. I only use them for phrases.
    - I don't add multiple hints to one LingQ, but I can imagine that others do.


    February 2014
  • kcb 80238 31208 3739
    @Colin Thanks for your list. The loading time of the example sentences was something I had wondered as well.

    Some points to bear in mind for this new list:
    My first list was not meant as a suggestion list; this one is.
    I'm intentionally ignoring how difficult/resource heavy these changes might be since I have no idea on that front.
    My feeling is that new/other users who might be overwhelmed with choices would simply not notice them since the choices would be on the settings page.

    SETTINGS PAGE check boxes

    [Lesson page Dashboard]
    -Show example sentences
    -Show phrase box
    -Show + button
    -Show new words list
    -Show lingq list
    -Show Lesson Detail list
    -Show Notes box
    -Show Ask a Tutor
    -Show Add Tags
    -Show Hint Language flag
    -Show speaker button
    -Show green checkmark

    [Lesson page Reading Window]
    -Show dotted line under level 4 lingqs*
    -Yellow and blue words treated as one when using arrow keys
    -No fun mode (Eliminate background, maximize reading window, and no Avatar bar)


    *My idea here is that perhaps the dotted lines (the level 4 words still being lingqs, in other words) contribute to how slow a lesson is. If it made a difference speed-wise whether my level 4 lingqs were simply known words, then I'd welcome the option to mass convert them.
    February 2014
  • Administrator
    steve 7243 161 55542
    Thank you for the constructive and useful feedback.
    February 2014
  • Wulfgar 27165 24656 3914
    @alex - Thanks for the clarification. But let me also clarify. I'm talking about a bug here, not an improvement. I can't read 2 lines of text in about half the lessons I do. Scrolling or reloading doesn't help. It's a specific 2 lines that the pokemon has decided to cover. So that's a bug. Of course, there are some improvement suggestions too, like moving the two toolbars (pokemon and new words) out of the way, allowing the big 'ol dictionary window to be minimized without needing to supersize my browser window, etc. But the reason I started this thread was to get the bug fixed.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @Wulfgar - Ah, I see. I guess things got a bit lost in the mix! Would you be able to send a screenshot to support (at) lingq.com so we can have a better idea of what you're seeing and what might be causing this?
    February 2014
  • Wulfgar 27165 24656 3914
    message sent
    February 2014
  • [[MikeK50]] 4917 0
    I have experienced similar issues the last two days(Wed. 02/19 & Thurs. 02/20) on mobile site (cell phone). I have used lessons on mobile for almost six months with no problem & great learning experiences, and even got by the recent upgrade with the pokemon bar interference issue by turning my phone quickly between landscape & portrait, but now I have to zoom in to find the play timer bar which doesn't always work and there are interferences from LQ words etc. Did recent attempts to fix pokemon bar issue change everything else? I enjoy using the mobile site and I know I can download the lessons, but this takes away from my learning experience. I use the mobile site half of the time while on LingQ and laptop for the rest.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @MikeK50 - As far as I know, nothing has changed over the past week regarding the Avatar progress bar (or the lesson page in general). We're aware of some display issues on mobile devices, and hope to have this resolved in a future update. In the meantime, was the site displaying properly for you before 2/19?

    We made the decision a few months ago to focus our efforts on improving the mobile apps for iOS and Android instead of spending significant efforts to improve the mobile experience on the site itself. The apps are coming along nicely, and will be well worth the wait :)
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ alex

    I love the iOS app and the website on my laptop, but the website on my phone is a complete disaster. I have never seen anything like it. It looks like a tornado came blowing thorugh and blew everything around. Just my honest opinion.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @ColinJohnstone - The new iOS app should be ready soon. I can't share too much more, as we don't want to spoil the surprise. Announcement coming soon... ;)
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    @ Alex

    Please please please please tell me you are not sticking the Pokemon power-up bar at the bottom of the reading part of the app.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @ColinJohnstone - I won't spoil it, but the new app is a minigame where you grow your Avatar by exploring the world of LingQopia, picking up LingQs (coins) and points as you travel around the various different cultural regions related to the language you are learning.

    In all seriousness, even you'll love the new app, but that's about all you'll hear from me until it's released.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    I really have to ask, why 'even' me?

    Anyway, you or mark said on the forum months ago what you were doing with the app, and it sounds great.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @ColinJohnstone - "even" was just in response to your particular comment about the Avatar and gamification of LingQ, didn't really mean anything by it to be honest :)
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    Regarding the list given by kcb above, I would not put in so many options. However, one option that I think would be good would be the ability to turn on and off the user hints. I like the user hints and I rely on them almost all of the time, but I know there are people who don't use them, such as Vera and Evgueny, and they would probably prefer that they were taken directly to the dictionary when they click on a new word. This would save them one click per new word, which, in a document with 250 new words, saves them a lot of effort.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    VeraI 18588 2664 651
    Thank you for this suggestion, Colin. That would be really great. And it would be like it was in earlier versions of LingQ :)
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    ColinJohnstonov 52700 1 7605
    In addition to this saving one click per word, it would also save the user a lot of time and effort moving the mouse around the screen.
    February 2014
  • Moderator
    alex 1705 656 31848
    @ColinJohnstone, VeraI - Thanks for your suggestions on this. We don't have any immediate plans to make any changes here. We've toyed with settings over the past couple of years to allow multiple behaviours, and have found that instead of adding settings or maintaining multiple versions of the same function, a better long term approach is choosing the path that benefits most users and spending the additional time improving other aspects of the application.

    Here's a good flowchart I stumbled across last week regarding this very issue: http://developer.android.com/design/patterns/se...

    That being said, we're of course open to hearing all your ideas and suggestions, and we consider user feedback with many of the decisions we make behind the scenes.
    February 2014
  • antom 31188 14 13436
    Regarding the gold coin bar: I feel that running a script to get rid of it is too much for me.
    What I do instead is: right-click on the coin bar, select Inspect Element (Chrome and FF have similar functinality), then change
    div id="avatar-widget" style="bottom: -10px; width: 599.833px; "
    to
    div id="avatar-widget" style="bottom: -10px; width: 599.833px; display:none; "
    and hit Enter. Note the quotation mark is closed behind display:none.
    February 2014