Ross Rogers

blog projects resume

Anki audio flashcard importer

16 Sep 2014

I'm trying to improve my Spanish fluency, and I was inspired by How to Become Fluent in Spanish to go through 2001 Spanish and English Idioms with translations graciously provided by the nice hispanic office cleaning lady.

Unfortunately, the process of chopping up the audio she recorded for me and then associating it with the Anki flash cards one by one was very laborious. So, let's automate it!

First, I needed to chop up the audio she provided without manually selecting each chunk and exporting it. By getting her to pause for 2-3 seconds between each phrase she was saying, I could use Audacity to find the chunks of sound and chop them up using the sound finder:

Then export these files with File->Export Multiple... (select Numbering before Label/Track Name)

Now I have a bunch of audio files that are chopped up in time order

0001.mp3
0002.mp3
0003.mp3
[...]

Then, I record the English and chop them up the same way into a different directory.

Next, I use a plugin that I wrote for Anki called "Audio Flashcard Importer" to automatically align the two different sets of mp3s:

You can do all the entry using only the keyboard by tabbing through the form. If the audio is out of alignment, you can use your and keys to select which mp3 should be aligned with this card. If an audio chunk is missing or was chopped up by Audacity incorrectly, you can drag and drop a different mp3 file onto that button.

I have yet to use my new system for actually learning.... but at least it is automated. The fun part of learning a new language is not learning it but automating it :-D.