Customizing Flashcard Wizard

Because software such as Flashcard Wizard is designed to be used frequently, it is useful to be able to change certain aspects of its interface and behavior. The nine screens of preferences with over 100 options have been added to that purpose. However, don't let the wealth of options drown you, the factory settings of Flashcard Wizard should be sufficient for the average user so no one should let the bewildering array of choices in the preferences confuse them.

Below is an overview of all the preferences of Flashcard Wizard. Most preferences are in the form of check boxes which are either on or off. You may access these preferences in the file menu.

The General Preferences

  1. By Default Save Sets As - This pop menu allows you to override Flashcard Wizard's habit of saving all sets as Flashcard Wizard files. You may choose from over a dozen file formats. They will all be saved as type TEXT but will change the creator code of sets created so that you may launch the desired application when double clicking on the sets in the finder.
  2. Inline Input - With this selected, users of Flashcard Wizard can input non-Roman scripts directly into fields. The only disadvantage is that inline input has known to cause strange behavior on some machines and versions of the system or language kit software.
  3. Automatically Start Flashcard Mode - When this is on, opening a set in Flashcard Wizard will start flashcard mode immediately.
  4. Display Warnings - With this on, Flashcard Wizard will prompt the user with "Are you sure?" warning messages when they delete user sets, and perform various other actions that they might regret. By deselecting this checkbox you do not escape all messages, but a few of the more annoying ones.
  5. Display Welcome Screen - This will determine whether the welcome screen at startup will be shown. This includes the option of viewing the help files or a brief introduction to Flashcard Wizard.
  6. Automatic User Open - With this on, Flashcard Wizard will automatically load a user of your choice upon opening the program. This is useful if you use Flashcard Wizard at home and there are few, if any, others using your program. If this is selected, a button "Choose User" will appear and allow you to select a user to automatically open at startup.
  7. Default Special Paste - The "Edit" menu has a number of "special paste" commands, one of which is "Default Special Paste". To determine which kind of special paste will be used in the default case, enter a single character here. You may use three "metacharacters" as well, use "\t" to represent tab, "\s" to represent a space, and "\r" to represent a return.

Interface Preferences

  1. Metallic Backgrounds - By selecting this option, Flashcard Wizard will remove all the metallic backgrounds. On some machines this may improve performance slightly. Others simply don't like the backgrounds and will choose to remove them for that reason.
  2. Auto-open Tools - By selecting this option, Flashcard Wizard will automatically open the toolbar on startup. Those who have a small screen or simply wish to use the menus and keyboard shortcuts instead may wish to disable this option.
  3. Toolbar - If this is selected, the tools window will take the form of a horizontal bar. THIS IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Some may choose however to disable this option so that the tools appear as a small palette. The palette, however, does not display messages so most users will prefer the toolbar.
  4. Show Progress - This will display a second horizontal bar along the base of the screen which will display a progress bar and other information when Flashcard Wizard is processing tasks. During flashcard study it will for example show how many words are being reviewed on a second or third cycle.
  5. Auto-open List View - With this selected, should a set not be set to "Edit Via Prompt" then it will automatically open in the list view mode upon opening. If this is disabled, no windows will be opened when the set is opened (as long as "Edit via Prompt" is also disabled for that set). Users who go directly to flashcard study of a set may prefer to disable this feature.
  6. Show Comment - If this feature is enabled, the comments of each entry will display below when entries are selected in the list view.
  7. Open as Long and Tall - if this is selected, when opening the list view, the window size will automatically be set at long and tall, the largest size window and only fully visible by users who have larger monitors or monitors with higher resolutions.
  8. Hide other Applications - if this is selected, a grey background will hide all other applications. This is useful if you find other background applications distracting to your study.
  9. Display User Set Users - If this is selected, the name of the user to which a user set is attached will be displayed in the toolbar.
  10. Double-Clicking User Sets - this final preference determines what happens when a user set is double-clicked in the User Sets window. If this preference is enabled, double-clicking on a user set does not open it but edits its set properties.
  11. Arrow Key Behavior - If on, then the arrow keys will only move entries up and down in the list when the "Shift" key is held down. Otherwise, the arrow keys will simply move the focus to an entry above or below.

Multimedia Preferences

  1. Manual Resizing - This will allow manual resizing of the "Picture" palette window. This is only useful if Auto-Resize if off.
  2. Auto-Resize - This controls whether the "Picture" window is resized to fit the current picture file.
  3. No Floating Palette - When this is active, the "Picture" window will not be a floating palette but rather a normal window. Note, this will not be resizable, even when (1) is active.
  4. Auto-Open - This controls whether the "Picture" window displays pictures when the "Add Entry" window is open.
  5. Picture Centering - This controls whether the picture is centered when the window is larger than the picture file. This is only relevant if the Auto-Resize option is off.
  6. Auto-Close - This controls whether the "Picture" window closes when the "Add Entry" window closes.
  7. Auto-Display - This controls whether the "Picture" window opens when entries are selected in the List View.
  8. Cache Control - This controls whether the pictures are cached in window. If they are not cached, Flashcard Wizard performance will slow but might help with memory constraints.
  9. Imbed Pictures - This controls whether pictures are imbedded into the "Flaschard" window or displayed in the "Picture" window when conducting flashcard study.
  10. Black Background - This controls whether the background is black or white when the picture is smaller than the "Picture" window. This is only relevant if Auto-Resizing if off.
  11. Lock Window Size - This will lock the window to a certain size if Auto-Resize if off.

Set Creation Preferences

  1. The set creation preferences window looks almost identical to the window of choices given when a new set is made. However, all the fonts, sizes, and field names entered in the preferences become the default for all new sets and imported sets. Thus, choose the fonts and field names that will accompany the majority of your sets to save yourself time in creating a new set.

User Creation Preferences

  1. The user creation preferences, like the set preferences sets the default settings for new users. Here you may indicate a default TTF schedule for new users.

Flashcard Preferences

  1. Font Sizes - At the top left of the flashcard preferences window you may choose the default font sizes for the three flashcard fields. If the information in the field is more than four or five words long, try a smaller font to ensure that all the information is displayed.
  2. Shortcut Keys - At the bottom left of the flashcard preferences window you may indicate which keys you wish to indicate a correct or incorrect answer. The "q" key will always be another way to indicate "correct" and "w" will always indicate "incorrect" but in addition to this you may assign the return, enter, or space keys the response of "correct" or "incorrect" as set here.
  3. Show Comment Field - By selecting this, the comment field of each entry will be displayed on the flashcard as you review.
  4. Show Field Names - By selecting this, the two or three field names of your entries will be displayed on the flashcard as you review.
  5. Display Statistics - By selecting this, a percentage and a total right out of total reviewed statistic will be displayed at the lower right of the flashcard as you review.
  6. Show Check Boxes - When this is active, two or three check boxes will be visible at the left of the flashcard as you review. With these check boxes you can change what fields are displayed by default as you move from entry to entry.
  7. Show "Edit" Button - By activating this button, an "Edit" button will be visible on the flashcard as you review allowing you to jump to the "Add Card" window as you study. This is not available during interval study. Even when the button is not visible, it is activated by "e" on the keyboard.
  8. Show "Back" Button - By activating this button, a "Back" button will be visible on the flashcard as you review. This will move you back through the cards you have already reviewed. This is not available during interval study. Even when the button is not visible you may move back by holding the shift key and clicking on the card or pressing "b" on the keyboard.
  9. Show "Advance" Button - This will toggle the visibility of the "Advance" or "Show All Fields" button during flashcard mode. When this feature is off, you simply click on the body of the card to advance (you may still click on the body of the card when the feature is on).
  10. Start Over - When this feature is active, Flashcard Wizard will automatically start over after you have reviewed all words correctly in flashcard or interval flashcard review. This is useful for those who, even when they review all entries, wish to continue to review by practicing another field. For example, if showing field one by default the first cycle, they may wish to review showing the third field as default the second cycle.
  11. Random Order - When this feature is active Flashcard Wizard will select all entries randomly from the set and not review them in the order they are found in the set. It is recommended that random study is on otherwise you may come to remember entries by associating them with the entry previous or following it.
  12. Show X - When this feature is active a small red "X" will appear when you register an entry wrong. If you have the timer turned on and have set it to automatically register entries incorrect after a certain number of seconds, this is especially useful so you may better notice when entries are registered incorrect.
  13. Default Fields - You may indicate here which fields you wish to be displayed by default when you review. These may be changed as you review if you have the "Show Check Boxes" feature activated.

More Flashcard Preferences

There are more flashcard preferences available if you push the "More..." button in the flashcard preferences window.

  1. Flashcard Timer - The flashcard timer will track how many seconds it takes for you to respond. If you have the timer, indicate how many seconds you wish to pass before Flashcard Wizard registers the entry incorrect. Alternatively, you may have Flashcard Wizard "silently" mark the entry incorrect. That way, you may continue to view the card even as Flashcard Wizard has already registered the entry incorrect. If not set to silently register entries incorrect you will be forced to move on to the next entry as it marks the current entry incorrect.
  2. Display Seconds - If this is active and the timer is on, the seconds will count down in the bottom corner of the flashcard.
  3. Automatically Save after Editing - This will save the set file automatically if you have edited the set while reviewing it in flashcard mode.
  4. Black Background - If you do not normally have other applications blocked by the grey background available in the Interface preferences, you may use this feature to provide a black background while doing flashcard study for less distraction.
  5. Window Sizes - There are 10 different sizes available for the Flashcard window besides the normal default. Consider using a larger size if you have pictures in your sets. The standard size windows only differ in the size of the fields. The large window is much larger and also offers one configuration which allows the first field to be displayed at the left of the window with one or two fields to the right.
  6. Black Background - When this is chosen, the background will be made black during flashcard study. This will block out distracting application windows that might be open in the background.
  7. Flashcard Window Sizes and Configurations - The pop-up menu allows you to change the size and configuration of the flashcard window. There are two sizes for the window but an array of different choices within each size to control the size of the fields. If you never use 3 field sets, you might like to shrink the third field so that it takes up less space on the flashcard.

Interval Study Preferences

  1. Setting Back Wrong Entries - If active, entries registered incorrect during interval study will move the entry backwards in the TTF schedule, a number of stages decided by the user. If this feature is disabled the entry will remain at its current stage.
  2. Show Statistics - If active, statistics about the current entry will appear in a separate window while conducting interval study. It will contain information such as the entry's TTF stage, total times reviewed, total times registered incorrect, average seconds, etc.
  3. Maximum Entries - In the center left of the interval study preferences window you may indicate the maximum number of entries you wish to study during interval study. After indicating the maximum, indicate how you would like Flashcard Wizard to select entries should the entries you need to study exceed the maximum. You may choose "Always Ask" which will prompt you to decide before beginning interval study, "Choose Randomly" which will automatically choose entries randomly. Finally, you may activate the "Entry Filter" which will allow you to find appropriate entries to study by filtering out those you do not wish to review.
  4. Show Set Name - This will toggle whether the flashcard indicates which of your user sets the entry originated.
  5. Flexibility - Usually, when conducting interval study, Flashcard wizard will look for entries that have not been reviewed exactly x number of days ago depending on your last review and what ttf stage your entry is at. However, if you reviewed at 9 in the morning, and you need to review the entry 1 day later, Flashcard Wizard will not find the entry until exactly 9 the next day. Thus, if you get up a little early or want to start interval study at 8:50 the next day, you need to wait or not review at all. By adding a few hours of flexibility, you subtract a few hours from the last 24 hour period that Flashcard Wizard calculates for the entry. It is recommended that you have at least one hour of flexibility but not more than 12 hours.
  6. Overflow Control - There are three options at the bottom of this window to control the behavior of Flashcard Wizard should interval study find too many entries. You may indicate a maximum "normal" amount of entries to study in any one interval study session (usually, students can't study more than 100 entries in one session without performance decreases due to loss of concentration and interest). Then you may choose what Flashcard Wizard should do should interval study find more entries that need review than the maximum. You may choose to use the powerful "entry filter" to filter out entries you need to study most, choose entries randomly, or have a dialog box ask if you want random or filtered entries.

Backup Preferences

  1. Always Ask Target Location - If this is active, Flashcard Wizard will always ask for a location to save backups. If you deactivate this option, you must indicate a default location, such as the location of your Flashcard Wizard application.
  2. Automatic Backup - If this is active, you may automatically backup users and their sets when they are loaded or upon quitting Flashcard Wizard.

User Logs

  1. The User Logs are by default turned off. When turned on, and a user is loaded, Flashcard Wizard may monitor a large number of statistics about a users actions in the application. You may turn logging on and off for all of these in this preference panel. For example, you may monitor when a user reviews lessons, modifies them, conducts interval study, etc. All of these logs are viewable in the "User Log & Statistics" option in the "User" menu.

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