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question in Japanese Core 1000: Step 1 on 2016/06/23
Hi, I'm a newbie and I found this website is interesting to use for practice japanese. I took some word practice, but I don't know how I can study grammar using this? or perhaps, I have to memorize pattern sentence in word practice?
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Hello and welcome to iKnow!
I think you need to study grammar with a textbook that provides proper grammar structures in order to learn Japanese efficiently. I find iKnow very helpful in learning vocabulary and getting used to different Kanji readings. Grammar... not so much. Because the English translations provided are not always very literal in a sense that allows you to distinguish components of the sentence properly. 

I'm using Minna no Nihongo textbook to learn grammar (it's a pain because the book is used in classroom, not recommended for self-study). Many people recommend Genki. Actually, I don't think Japanese grammar is too difficult at first - well, I found French and German much worse with noun genders and the conjugations that follow.  
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question in Japanese Core 6000 on 2016/06/15
Hi guys!

So I am trying to fit about 8 hrs per week for my Japanese learning on iKnow. I used to take a 3-month Japanese course two years ago, so I have pretty good grasp of Hiragana, Katakana, very basic grammar and roughly about 100 Kanji characters.
After about 39 hours here with Core 1000, I am quite pleased that I'm exposed to a lot of new grammar and Kanji. However, I wonder if I can keep up well for the Core 2000 or 3000 because there's so much to learn, and the translations some times do not provide literal meaning of the Japanese sentence, which makes it even more confusing to remember the Japanese grammar, since I look up every grammar structure for each example sentence which I feel "there's something wrong with this." The examples are countless, but let me show you one:

隣の家には犬がいます。They have a dog next door.I think it should be "There is a dog in my neighbor's house."I was planning to get pass Core 3000 (with all the additional grammar I can learn from textbook) in six to eight months, but I am afraid that my progress will get much slower later on. Do you guys encounter similar situations?
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I would say the more you learn the more you will have to review and longer things will take. I think it's only natural that you'll slow down a bit. I know I'm getting though Core 2000 a lot slower than I did Core 1000.
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This program is good if used in conjunction with other learning materials.  Learning grammar and listening to naturally spoken Japanese is also key to learning.  And don't worry, the deeper you go in, the harder the words get.  Less frequently used words will be harder to retain.  
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Eh, why this question shows up in Core 6000? I have no idea... Sorry!

I'm planning to swim reach Core 6000 in one year and a half (a bit too ambitious I know). More often I remember long, tricky words better than shorter ones, like "mezamashidokei" 目覚まし時計 or "jidouhanbaiki" 自動販売機 better than shorter words like "atama" 頭. I always confuse short words that sounds alike, like "hiza" 膝 and "hiji" 肘 and find them painful to recall which is which. Is there a way to fix this kind of brain fart?


And what are the main difficulties in learning for you guys?
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question in Simplified Chinese Core on 2016/06/10
Hello, I am currently taking the Japanese Core 2000 and have about 600 mastered items. However, since I did a bit of Chinese Core 1000 a (long) while ago, my mastered items still count those of the Chinese, going up to about 800, even though I don't use nor do I have the Chinese course on "save" or any other tab. How can I update my stats (time, started items, mastered items...) so they can reflect only the Japanese Core? Thanks!
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I'm afraid I cannot help, but that's also what I am concerned about. I am learning SAT vocabulary at the same time with Japanese Core 1000. If iKnow can set up separate tabs for progress of each language it would be more helpful. 
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question in スタート! on 2016/06/06
Does anyone else on here think the Kana mode is poorly designed?  or borderline useless?  I have a lifetime membership to iknow because I believe in their product, but I have a suggestion and I'd like to see what others think.

- In Kana mode now it shows Kana and Romanji for the sentences, and word introduction.  NOBODY needs the Romanji if they're studying in Kana mode.... nobody.  That's what Romanji mode is for.

-Kanji mode causes me to miss a lot of words, when quizzed on Kanji recognition that I otherwise know very well.  "I plan on finishing the 6000 then going back and doing the kanji.  I need to increase my speaking skills fast for work, and Kanji isn't something I need immediately.  I can read about 800 in context, but it's not what I'm studying now".

- My suggestion is that Kana mode show the full Kanji text where it is now showing Romanji.  The Romanji is absolutely useless if you can read Kana, and this would allow passive learning of the Kanji without forcing you to miss words you know when you want to see the full kanji sentences.


----------------------
Would anyone else like this feature?  I only speak at work and never read anything.  Kanji is something I want to passively take in, but not actively be quizzed on at this point in time.  I learned about 800 before, and understand how they work, but I don't have time to focus on more Kanji right now.  I'm sure there's others like me out there, right?
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No name person:  You didn't read what I said at all.  I'm working in a Japanese company speaking Japanese, NEVER reading or writing anything and I NEED to increase my vocabulary asap.  I have a decent grasp on a lot of Kanji already, but I don't have time to study it NOW.  

Passively seeing the kanji is what I need, not kanji specific drills.  Once I get a little further in iknow I'll pick up Heisig's book again and finish it.  That method worked better than anything else for me personally.

A 74 hour work week doesn't leave me the luxury of studying as much as I would like.  We don't all have fantasy lives.  I basically have to get less than ample sleep in order to study Japanese 1-2 hours a day.  12hr Work>gym>Sleep>study in 24 hours isn't easy....
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This won't get you exactly what you want, but it's possible to use Adblock Plus to disable the transliteration by adding "iknow.jp##.sentence_transliteration" to your filters. Again, not exactly what you want but it could be a helpful alternative for the meantime.
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I would like something like this as well. Yet, just that the Kanji always shows furigana in kana mode, during answers and questions. In full mode, the furigana can be omitted. Passively seeing kanji helps a lot. Failing words you know, because you haven't learned the kanji slows down the ability to learn the vocabulary, as you have to learn kanji and vocab.
Displaying comments 3 - 5 of 5 in total show all
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/31

These are excerpts from TIME magazine.
I don't understand the meaning of '9ow'.

"It lets the Taliban 9ow, 'You may have thought America was eager to get out,' " says Hussain Haqquani, a former Pakistani ambassador to the U.S., but "that's not going to happen,"

For all that, you had only to look at the photograph of the President, tieless with sleeves rolled up s he sat on a plastic stool eating bun cha and drinking beer with celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain at a noodle shop in Hanoi, to 9ow counterterterrorism isn't where Obama's heart is.

Thank you.
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Hello there!
As far as I know, "9ow" looks like a big fat typo and nothing else! If you want to make sure if some weird-looking word is correct, try typing "what is [the word you're questioning, without the bracket]" to Google search.

Google will give you a range of results.I have accessed the the TIME article with the "9ow" thing. Apparently I guess the word in question might be "show" or "know". You can also see that, "counterterterorrorism" is not a legit word. It's counter-terrorism!

I hope it helps!
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Oh, it's just a typo... Yes, if 'know' is put in the place, it can make sense.
Thank you for your time and help! 
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question in Japanese Core 6000 on 2016/05/29

Is my reasoning not clear, or am i
missing something here?I have heard 2 diffrent te form songs, and
i am very confused. Am i supposed to learn both? Is both correct? Ore
is only one of them correct?I have several books and used several
sights to learn japanese like: Puni puni, genki, youtube,  kanjilink,
yesjapan etc.And i cant say i have ever heard both te form lists
at the same time. All of them seem to only use one of them. And they
are talking about them like its the only one (from what i gatherd) ,
and if you learn that list you know how to conjugate te-form in
a sentence.So if there are 2, why are not both of them mentioned?
I guess i am missing something here, so please explain this to me
:)Here are the 2 versions i have heard:
う、つ、る・・・・・ってぬ、ぶ、む・・・・・・んでく・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・いてぐ・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・いです・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・してする・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・してくる・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・きていく・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・いって。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。い、ち、り・・・・・・・・ってび、み、に・・・・・・・・・んでき・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・いてぎ・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・・いでします・・・・・・・・・・・・・・してきます・・・・・・・・・・・・・・きていきます・・・・・・・・・・・・いってand
are there eaven more that should be in this list???(please excuse
my spelling, i am still learning:) )Thank you in advance ^^
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These are both correct. One is teaching you ~て form for the dictionary form (i.e. "root/stem") or the Japanese word, the other is teaching you for ~ます form.  

The formatting of that comment turned out weird and was hard to read, but basically both of those are the exact same thing,  for example:


まつ=待ちます=待っていますThere are no more ~て form combinations than the ones listed above. Personally,  I recommend you learn both of these songs, if learning them helps you in the first place, because if you know both ways to conjugate a verb you'll do better at higher levels
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/25
Where'd all the Italian courses go and can someone help bring them back or recreate them?
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/22

So according to my understanding,
もらう always go with からlike:
彼女からプレゼントをもらいました。
and くれる would go with “が”- to marked as the subject in:
友達が誕生日プレゼントをくれた。
I cannot come up with a literal English translation for this one… I sensed that it is something along the line of “I got the birthday present which my friend (gave?).” If so, is this sentence correct?
彼は彼女が誕生日プレゼントをくれた。
(He got his birthday present from his girlfriend.) Thank you and have fun learning!
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Thanks for the reply, toeicoo!
Yes, the passive voice as in "I was given a birthday present by my friend" sounds awkward. Anyway, I think もらう have a strong contextual meaning to it... 
Like this sentence "友達が娘にクマのぬいぐるみをくれた。" it would be clearer to use the verb くれる because if we use もらう , then 娘 would be someone's daughter, not necessary the speaker's? 

I think your English is very good. Try reading The Atlantic, The New Yorker, or the blog called Wait But Why... they're not that difficult to understand! Be confident with yourself.
I've been learning and using English for about seventeen years anyway... I can handle a conversation but my grammar is too broken for someone who has been learning for that long.

To be honest I wanted to learn Japanese because I love Kabuki theater and Japanese literature very much. I have a loooong way to go ;-)
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Hmm, maybe it's beyond my ability to explain the difference between もらう and くれる.

The sentence "友達が娘にクマのぬいぐるみをくれた" (My friend gave a stuffed bear to my daughter.) would be rewritten by using もらう like this.
"娘は私の友達からクマのぬいぐるみをもらった。"(I added 私の here to make it clearer that the friend is speaker's.)

くれる is usually used when we or our family or people in a close relation ship to us are given something.  While, もらう can be used for both cases that the recipient is the speaker (or their family) and the person who gets something is someone else. It means to get, receive or have.
e.g.
誕生日に プレゼント を もらいました。
I got some presents on my birthday.
田中さんは山田さんから誕生日プレゼントをもらいました。
Mr Tanaka got a birthday present from Ms Yamada.

So もらう can be used in the situation where you're (or your family) not the one who gives or the one who receives something.
から is used with もらう, when the speaker wants to clarify from whom they get the thing. 

Thank you for the kind word and advice. I checked the blog and watched the TED talk video too. It looks fun though I couldn't follow his speaking speed very well. I think I need more practice for reading and listening in English.
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Hello!

I think I'll stick with もらう, it seems like a more straightforward word. You've made your point clear enough, it's only because the nature of Japanese is very different and heavily contextual. Moreover, the fact that I'm a beginner may make it more difficult for you to explain things to me.
About Tim Urban (author of Wait But Why)'s TED talk, it's very entertaining. If you find it hard to follow, try reading the script (I believe it's available there on TED, I am not sure, but other TED talks have scripts). 
Displaying comments 4 - 6 of 6 in total show all
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question in Japanese Core 1000: Step 2 on 2016/05/18
Hello iKnow folks. There is this sentence:
すてきな色のセーターですね。
Which was translated to "I like the color of your sweater." 
However, I thought "すてきな" is supposed to mean "lovely" or "nice"? Is it ok to understand the sentence as "Your sweater is in a lovely color." even though that sounds awkward and unnatural for a compliment?Thanks for your explanation.
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> as a beginner I am quite concerned about the literal meaning.
I understand how you feel. The example sentences of the course look very natural and helpful. My English is not good enough, but I want to help people who learn Japanese. It's also a good opportunity for me to write in English and think about my native language.

Thank you for answering my question. 
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I am a native English speaker.  Many of the translations are a bit off, which is disappointing to me. More literal translations would help me progressive in my Japanese faster.

However, in this case "Your sweater is a lovely color." is natural English. I would definitely say that to an older lady, or a client in a business setting. "Your sweater is a lovely color, isn't it?" Is a bit unnatural because that sounds more like an actual question.  We use "isn't it" to confirm things sometimes, but more often than not it's a legitimate question.  Therefore, if I said "You're sweater is a lovely color, isn't it?" The person I was speaking to is likely to think I was asking them if they liked their own sweater, which would be weird all around.  
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@Arlian
Thank you for the explanation about the tag question form! I've totally misunderstood it since I learned it many many years ago. I thought it just made the sentence come alive.
Displaying comments 3 - 5 of 5 in total show all
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/18
Hello. I have tried to download the course 5.9 for more than one month on my smartphone. I always receive the message: "The server cannot find the course. Please try again later". Is anybody could explain me when will be "later"?
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Hello.

I have a similar problem on an older iPod. I get the error:
"Server error
Not found
Sorry for the inconvenience. Please wait and try again later"

Version is 3.4.3
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question in Japanese Core 1000: Step 1 on 2016/05/17
Hi guys, so there is this sentence:

誰かに聞いてみてください。
Which was translated to "Please ask someone"However, I suppose "- te mite" should be translated as "please try V-ing" so I think the English translation changed to "Please try asking someone"Is my understanding correct? Thanks for your explanation!
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Thank you for the explanation!
So "田中さんに聞いてみてください" would mean "Please try asking Mr. Tanaka", right?
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Yes, you're right.
"田中さんに聞いてみて下さい" is a specific advice. The speaker tells the listener to 'try' asking.

While, when you say, "誰かに聞いてみて下さい", you just imply that you're not sure of the question. It means "I'm not the right person to answer the question because I don't know about it."
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On the Japanese core 1000, there was a sentence And there was two rolls of Japanese characters. I'm not sure what does each roll mean. I need help
Displaying comments 2 - 4 of 4 in total show all
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/11
For some reason, at some point my study courses started to all get stuck at 99% complete. I have over 14 hours on one course, though the items are not all in the 'mastered' category, it used to not be a requirement because I have many courses in my review section which aren't 100% mastered on every word.

What is going on here?
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iKnow is based on 'the forgetting curve' which hypothesizes the decline of memory retention in time. You have to wait until they recommend you to review the remaining words. If you make mistakes at the 'review time', you have to wait again for the next review time they recommend. So 14 hours on one course doesn't work for this system. It's said that it takes about  6 months to complete a course.

However, many users have experienced the 'getting stuck at 99%' frustration and iKnow have noticed our complaints.
According to the following blog, they improved their system lately. So you'll complete those courses soon.

Anyway, I think you'd better start a new course, when you have many courses which are mastered more than 90%.
http://blog.iknow.jp/en/
 
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/09
Hi, I started using iKnow on my PC the other day and everything was fine. I then tried using it on my laptop and encountered a problem where I can hear everything except the reading of the words. Has anyone else had this issue, or know how to fix ? Ive all ready tried changing drivers and configuring audio devices and nothing has worked.
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/08
I am currently strapped for cash and am considering putting iKnow on hold, and studying purely from textbooks. I have the resources to continue, but I felt the convenience and easy usability of iKnow was worth the subscription. If I cancel my premium now, then come back in a few months, will my data all be saved? I would rather not have to manually edit the program or re-take the entry test as I already know the kanji, so test scores aren't entirely accurate as I can guess most of the answers without knowing any vocab. Thanks!
?
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You need to ask this question to Support. Scroll down, it's at the bottom right of this page.
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I've not renewed my subscription before and then came back to the site later with no problems. I've been doing this on and off over the past 3-4 years so it should be fine. I got a lifetime subscription a year ago, so if there have been any recent updates that would change this, I don't know about them but I think you'll be safe.
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question in スタート! on 2016/05/08

Could you help me understand the * *part, please?

Don’t teat young adults as teenagers

Over the past dozen years, the U.S. Supreme Court has issued several landmark decisions affirming that adolescents and adults are fundamentally different in ways that justify treating minors less harshly when they violate the criminal law. The court, drawing on psychological and brain science indicating that people under age 18 are not yet fully capable of controlling their behavior, abolished the juvenile death penalty and greatly restricted life without parole sentences for crimes by juveniles. As scientists and legal scholars who specialize in these issues, we have welcomed these changes with enthusiasm.  

But in recent months, a number of advocates have sought to extend the developmental immaturity argument to young adults, proposing that the age of juvenile court jurisdiction be raised to 21 from 18, *where it now stands in almost all states*. This idea has gained some real-world traction. Late last year, for example, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy of Connecticut called on his state’s Legislature to raise the age of juvenile court jurisdiction, and Illinois and Vermont are now contemplating a similar change.  

Questions  

1 What does this 'it' mean? 2 What does the phrase 'stands in' mean?  3 I don't understand the usage of the relative adverb 'where'. I think it's to do with the place 'it stands in', but where does it stand in?  
Thank you.
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@sbreyak
How did you know that I was really bad at listening in English? :D
Thank you for the link! The podcast is helpful for me to learn about brains and practice listening.
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Haha, I'm sure it's better than my listening in Japanese. If you like the episode, check out some others. Usually they put together some great interviews. Another NPR podcast on par with Fresh Air in topic and language level (and just being a great podcast) is This American Life (thislife.org). Enjoy!
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Thank you again! The podcast looks helpful to prepare for eiken test I'm going to sit for.
Displaying comments 5 - 7 of 7 in total show all
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question in スタート! on 2016/04/27
How is it possible to "activate" the Sentence Trainer?
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It's an option when you're studying the Japanese Core courses (and probably any other courses that have sentence examples. It's definitely not an option when studying courses that don't have sentence examples, like the Hiragana or Katakana courses.)

When you have Japanese Core courses in your "Studying" list, and you choose one of those (or choose Study All), then 4 choices pop up (iKnow, Rapid Choice, Self Check, or Sentence Trainer.) The Sentence Trainer option should be enabled if you're studying a course with sentence examples.
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If I'm reading your question right, I think you might be using the "Study All" button. If you study courses one by one the Sentence Trainer kicks in at every 10 or 20% of progress. But I use Study All as well and just do the Sentence Trainer occasionally.
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question in スタート! on 2016/04/25
I had some item lists from other non-Japanese languages some years ago but now they're gone.
The items I started from them however are part of my Started Items total.

I managed to find 17 of them recently from newer lists (French) that had these missing items in them but there are still 139 missing, so I added 61 other non-Japanese items to make it an even 200 so as to make counting my Japanese total easier.

Is there an easier way I can find these missing started items so I can reset them and see my true Japanese Started Item total on the Home page?
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question in Japanese Core 1000: Step 6 on 2016/04/23

This example sentence (for 答え) is given the translation, "He doesn't know the answer to the problem."

What if you actually wanted to say that he doesn't understand the answer to the problem? Like, if he was given the answer and doesn't understand it?

top comment

3
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"He doesn't understand the answer to the problem? " would be translated as
彼はその問題の答えが理解出来ない。
(理解出来ない rikai dekinai)

理解する means to know AND understand.
分かる means to know OR understand, and when it is used with the word 答え like 答えが分かる, it doesn't always mean to understand the answer. So when someone says, "答えが分かる", there's a possibility that they just know the answer, but they don't know how to solve the question.
view in context
3
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"He doesn't understand the answer to the problem? " would be translated as
彼はその問題の答えが理解出来ない。
(理解出来ない rikai dekinai)

理解する means to know AND understand.
分かる means to know OR understand, and when it is used with the word 答え like 答えが分かる, it doesn't always mean to understand the answer. So when someone says, "答えが分かる", there's a possibility that they just know the answer, but they don't know how to solve the question.
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Thanks again, toeicoo! :)
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You're welcome.
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question in スタート! on 2016/04/22
I've seen いちどに translated everywhere as "all at once" but in this sample sentence from Core 3000 it seems to have a slightly different meaning. Can someone take a stab at either making another translation or explaining the use here a bit more clearly?

 皆の顔と名前を一度には覚えられません。

みんな の かお と なまえ を いちど に は おぼえられません。

I can't remember everyone's face and name all at once.

To me it sounds like it might be just the word order. Perhaps "All at once, I can't remember anyone's name and face?" Still though, the use seems a bit vague. I mean is this person talking about a shocking trauma or joking about how poor their memory for names and faces is?

top comment

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My English is not good enough, but it would be translated as
 'I can't remember everyone's face and name at one try'.
or 'I can't remember everyone's face and name from one look'.

Imagine you're a teacher and today is the first day for you to meet the new students. In front of you, about twenty of them are sitting. It's quite easy for them to remember your face and name because you have only one face and name :p But you have to remember twenty faces and names because it's one of your jobs.  It's a kind of pressure, but you need to remember them as soon as possible to know them well.
view in context
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My English is not good enough, but it would be translated as
 'I can't remember everyone's face and name at one try'.
or 'I can't remember everyone's face and name from one look'.

Imagine you're a teacher and today is the first day for you to meet the new students. In front of you, about twenty of them are sitting. It's quite easy for them to remember your face and name because you have only one face and name :p But you have to remember twenty faces and names because it's one of your jobs.  It's a kind of pressure, but you need to remember them as soon as possible to know them well.
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Ah! I get it! Thanks, Toeicoo! "All at once" usually means simply "suddenly" but in this case it means something more like "a lot of something in an instant."

You're really good at this! Thanks, again!
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"a lot of something in an instant." 
Yes, that's what I wanted to say!

You're welcome!
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question in スタート! on 2016/04/21
Is there a way to put in my own notes linked to specific vocab words? 

For example, I like to create mnemonics for vocab words and I would prefer to do it on the iknow.jp website rather than using another method like googlesheets (similar to Excel). 
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votes
You may be able to get by this by putting the mnemonic in the transliteration portion of the entry, but you wouldn't get sentences that worked correctly going that route.

For mnemonics, I think it may be best to split up how you're practicing into two parts.  For the word's use/definition, compounding words, sentences, etc - use iKnow.  For the mnemonic, itself, use it kinda like it's used in RTK, that being, focus on just the character, and the meaning.

I haven't done this yet, but I can imagine a fairly useful way of doing this is on paper, using real flashcards.  On one side, have the kanji (use a computer, so the balance comes out right).  On the back, have the mnemonic along with the picture of what the mnemonic is intended to be.  Basically you drawing it out from what the book you're using has it as (or better yet, come up with your own).

Personally, I find visualizing the individual kanji at first to help it stick.  Most times, that doesn't really stay for super long, but I've had a few that have.  E.g. 海岸 (かいがん), which I made an example sentence being 'Kaigan on the beach, practicing with his lightsaber'.  Still sticks to this day.  Similar things you come up with may work well...and doesn't really require a second study deck.