Traditional paper flashcards have two sides, which are used for the question and the answer. When browsing cards, it is possible to choose which side is the question, and which is the answer. It allows to study “English-French” card pack from English to French and in the reverse direction. Though, if you want to add other information, like example or pronunciation, it must be written only on one card side. It is impossible to have a “third” side on a paper card and choose whether to use it in the question or in the answer.
In Fresh Memory, two card sides correspond to a dictionary record having two fields. But unlike paper flashcards, computer cards can have multiple fields. These fields can be used to store additonal information (pronunciation, example, word in a third language). The dictionary is configured what fields are used for the question and what for the answer. There can be more than one such configuration, and they are called card packs. They emulate different collections of cards with the same material.
With card packs, it is possible to study words in two directions: from foreign to native language and in the reversed order. The same dictionary records can be used with different card packs. Let us consider an example. The user has a dictionary with “English”, “French” and “Example” fields. One card pack defines that the English word is the question, and French and Example are used in the answer. The second pack defines that the French is the question, and English and Example are the answer. When the user starts studying, the application automatically generates cards from the records and selected card pack. See figure below.
The study directions can be more than two. Consider a dictionary, which has Country, Flag and Capital fields. The user can study cards in the following configurations: Country - Flag, Flag - Country, Country - Capital and Capital - Country.
There can be cards, which have the same question, but different answers (homonyms). When seeing such cards, the user would have nothing to do but merely guess which answer was meant for the question. The application instead automatically merges cards with the same question into one. The resulting card has the common question and the answers from all original cards.
And on the contrary, there can be a card with a complex question containing several words, which all correspond to the same answer (synonyms). Fresh Memory automatically breaks down cards with complex questions into several cards.
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