Frequently Asked Questions

Table of Contents

General

Who built this site, and why?

We set up Memorista Limited to build and run a website that would systematize mnemonic use and make the technique widely available, because:

  • we wished when on foreign holidays that we knew and could quickly recall some local vocabulary, but we didn't have the time or inclination to take formal classes
  • we knew the power of the mnemonic memorization technique but lacked the discipline or system to use it consistently.

For more information, contact us.

What are mnemonics?

Mnemonics are explained here

Mnemonics are a waste of time. I prefer learning the old fashioned way.

No problem, then this site probably isn't for you. Not everyone has the same learning style. But this site systematizes the use of mnemonics, which you may not have been able to do before, and hence you may not have had much success. You can try us anyway for free for as long as you like.

I've built up a good set of my own cards and mnemonics. Why can't I make them public for everyone?

Good question. We want to make sure that the "official" cards have our quality control applied: that they are correct, and have a set of mnemonics that are reasonable, are not offensive, etc. That way, a user can have confidence in the content, and start using them immediately.

You can still post suggestions and comments for cards, explaining what mnemonics you use. There is also a voting system, so that others can vote for suggestions you post, and you can vote on other's suggestions. We strongly encourage you to participate! The "Most Valued Posters" are commended and identified on the site homepage and elsewhere. More information is available here.

I need to learn more than just vocabulary! What about language grammar?

Learning vocabulary is a great start to learning a language and our website can help you in many situations, for instance if you need to learn some vocabulary quickly before you go on holiday, or if you need to learn some vocabulary for a formal language course you are studying. However, our website isn't a full replacement for formal language courses.

Problems

Your website doesn't work for me.

Have you checked that your web browser meets our web browser compatibility guidelines? You should also check you have a recent browser and that you have both cookies and JavaScript enabled.

I got a message saying "Oops!"

Our apologies for that, you may have hit a bug in the website. When that happens, we get an automatic detailed bug report, so we'll be looking into it, and hope to fix that problem as soon as we can.

The website seems a bit slow at the moment.

We're under rapid growth, and occasionally we get spikes in demand. We do monitor the ongoing situation, and where necessary and practical we can put more resources in place to cope with extra load.

I got an "exceeded quota" message.

We have decided to impose a fairly reasonable quota of 50 creates or edits for your own cards per day, and a similar amount for your own mnemonics. Everything else is unlimited at the moment. Sorry, but that's the way it has to be for now. We might change our policy in the future, and if we do, we'll post a message to that effect.

I never received your Confirm Registration email.

You should receive the email fairly shortly after registering, certainly no longer than a few hours. Did you give us your correct email address? Has your email software wrongly routed our message into a Junk or Spam folder? Also, you could possibly check the status of your internet connection, and also if your ISP (Internet Service Provider) is blocking email for some reason.

When I click the link given in the Confirm Registration email, I get an "Activation key invalid!" message.

There are two reasons this might happen. Firstly, if you already clicked the link in which case your account has already been activated. Secondly, the activation key is only valid for a limited time as noted in the email, after which it becomes invalid.

I registered a while ago, but I can't remember my username or password.

No problem. As long as you have the email address you used to register, you can use the "Reset Password" link on the Login page. The Reset Password form asks you to fill in the email address you registered with. We then send you an email with instructions to get your username and password.

I sent you an email detailing a problem and you didn't respond!

Our apologies for that. We are a free service, and we don't currently offer a support option. We can't currently guarantee to answer every problem email we receive, but do rest assured they are all read, and help us to decide how to prioritize our effort. Thank you sincerely.

When I repeated a test, the graph and my memory score remained the same!

What happened was correct. If you repeat a test soon after, the earlier results stand to your memory score. Your first test on a given day is what counts towards your score, otherwise, later results will be skewed because you've seen the answers recently.

Blog articles and contributions

Can I contribute to the site?

Yes, and we strongly encourage it. Blog postings and cards/mnemonics are open for comment. You can leave comments against cards and mnemonics suggesting to other users what mnemonics you find useful for that particular card. You'll need to register and be logged in to comment.

A second very important way you can contribute is by voting on comments. You can cast a secret vote once on any comment (except your own). Vote totals are displayed alongside each comment so you can see which comments and mnemonic suggestions have been ranked highly (or lowly) by other users. Top contributors (judged by the number of votes they received on their contributions) are commended on the home page in the "Most Valued Posters" list.

How can I see the comments for blog posts?

The headline title for each blog post on the home page is a hyperlink. Click it, and you'll be brought to a page where the blog post is displayed along with any comments. Other options are available on this page: view the author name, post date and tags if any, share the blog, and go to a permalink page. There is also a link to the blog archive page, so you can view earlier posts made in that category.

What's a "permalink"?

A permalink is a special page displaying a blog post at a URL that can be safely bookmarked or shared with other users.

What's the RSS link on the blog archive page?

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a format for publishing regularly updating information, such as that found in blogs. A piece of software known as an RSS Reader can track updates to RSS feeds that it is subscribed to. Some web browsers have a built-in RSS Reader, please consult your browser's documentation for more information.

The RSS hyperlink given is the URL that is required to give to your RSS Reader. When updates appear here, your RSS Reader will see the change, and notify you in some way.

Technology

What technology is used in memorista.com?

Memorista.com is built on a free and open source software stack, principally Django, Postgresql, Linux and Apache.

Future plans

Are you planning on creating cards and mnemonics for other languages in the future?

Possibly, it depends on demand. Our plans are to add many more languages this year, certainly. We also plan to add more Card Packs to existing languages, and new cards into existing Card Packs. We will be concentrating on major languages before lesser-spoken languages, and also will prioritise languages which use roman characters. That does not mean we will not support languages like Chinese or Japanese - merely, they are not currently our top priority.

If I can add my own cards, why can't I add my own subjects/languages/card packs etc? Also: You should have a regular poll feature (or some other cool feature X)

We are a growing site, and we will be adding new functionality in the future. We can't predict what functionality will be added first, or what exact features yet, though, and certainly no promises. Announcements will be made in due course.

English is not my native language. Do you have plans to translate your website into my language?

We do have plans to translate our concept for languages other than English. We would be doing that for the more widely spoken languages first, before lesser-spoken languages. We will make announcements in due course.

You could cover a non-language subject, such as Anatomy!

Absolutely correct. If you want to see a particular non-language subject covered, let us know your opinion at feedback@memorista.com. But it will depend on demand, no promises.

We're currently building up this page based on what people often ask us ... as the site is relatively new, we don't have much material yet! Send us your suggestions for questions to: feedback@memorista.com or if you are having problems with the site: problems@memorista.com