Tower of Babelfish
Personal Anki Deck Downloads (A disclaimer and some tips)

At popular request, and perhaps against my better judgement, I’m making my personal Anki decks available here to download.  A word of warning: I have never had a student or friend who has used my personal decks and succeeded at sticking to their language study.

Why?  Anki is ideal software for reminding you about a learning experience so that it stays in your memory.  It’s much less than ideal for actually learning that material the first time.  The goal when reviewing your cards is to get into a rhythm so that you’re answering each card in ~5 seconds.  When you have 100 reviews and 20 of those cards involve 1 minute of trying to decipher what the card could possibly mean and perhaps consulting a dictionary, it becomes all but impossible to set up this rhythm and using Anki becomes tedious and ineffective.  Also, because you spend so much more time reviewing, the net time you spend over several months will end up being greater than if you had just made the deck yourself.

The best learning experience I’ve found is in actually making your own Anki deck, choosing the pictures you find most appropriate, and coming up with the way you’re going to store a given word or concept.  Using someone else’s deck robs you of that experience.

That being said, if you’re dead set against making your own deck because you have no hands or something, you can make using someone else’s deck more effective by splitting the memorization and learning steps.  Download the deck, install it, and suspend every single card.  Go through the suspended cards and choose the ones that are clear in meaning to you.  Use a dictionary to make sure they mean what you think they mean.  Un-suspend those cards and learn them over a week or so.  Now go back and un-suspend more cards.  Keep doing this, and you’ll eventually learn all the concepts, and then be able to use Anki to effectively memorize them.

In the future, I’m going to make Anki decks for a general audience and go through them in YouTube videos so that the learning step occurs in the videos.  English or Russian may be the first ones I do, then I’ll move on to the other languages.  Until then, you’re free to look at my personal decks under the conditions that you’ve read this disclaimer, you use it for your own private use only, and if you share it with friends, you share a link to this disclaimer, and not to the download page.  The link is in the second to last paragraph where I talked about your having no hands.