Skritter 2.0 Beta is up and we're looking for feedback!

At the beginning of the year the Skritter team started working with a designer to completely overhaul the Skritter experience and bring a more modern look and feel to our application. For months we’ve been referencing “Skritter 2.0” on the forums but we’ve been fairly closed mouthed about what’s been going on. Today, we’re ending the silence and letting you get your hands on what we’ve been working on.

The beta version of the site is now being hosted on We would love for users to check out the site and provide us with feedback. At the moment the html5 site is only aimed at desktop browsers and we’ve been testing using the latest of Chrome, Firefox, IE and Safari. The link will direct you to the login page, where you’ll need to reenter your Skritter username and password. After that you’ll be taken to the new Skritter dashboard!

The entire site is gathering information from our servers so it might take a few seconds to load all of your information. We’ll be working on speeding up this process (and adding some load indicators) as we gather more data from users. Before you press the Study button, please be sure to set a Daily Goal!

Daily goals, and the monthly progress heat map are some of the biggest updates to the interface. We’re working to transform Skritter into a daily tool that helps guide you on your path to character mastery. You can set a time goal or an item goal, but you wont be able to do both. Once your daily goal all setup, you’ll be ready to jump onto the study page. It will take a little time for the server to fetch prompt data, so please be patient while it loads (again, load indicators are on their way). Visualization of the daily goal is already designed and will be added into the study page shortly.

The study page might seem a little baron for now, but all the prompt types work. Give us time to add in all of the additional features that you’re used to seeing on the Skritter website, they’re coming soon! For now, we’d really appreciate if you’d spend some time studying on the new site and give us your feedback along the way.

Speaking of feedback, here’s what we’re really looking for:

  • What do you think of the Daily Goal?
  • How does the new design look and feel?
  • Does the streak counter help motivate you to study more often?
  • Bug reports

You can submit feedback by using the Contact button located at the top of the page. We’ve separated things into two separate sections: Feedback, and Bug Report so please try to sort your comments into those categories. As mentioned on the the contact form “All submissions will be read and analyzed by the Skritter team and we’ll be working hard to making improvements. We’ll be sure to get in touch if we need additional follow-up information.”

Thank you in advance for helping us to test the future of Skritter, and for your patience in the process. For now, go forth to Skritter 2.0 and enjoy!

(This section will be updated as we continue to make progress on the site)

Current Limitations
The current beta will only allow users to view the dashboard and study page. You will have to manage vocabulary, lists, etc. from the Flash version of the site. Once the other pages, views, settings etc. are ready for testing we’ll put them on the new site. We promise it will be worth the wait!

In Development
Before anyone starts sending reports about what’s missing, or what’s not working, here’s a list of things that we’ll have up and running in short order:

  • Daily Goal Display on Study Page
  • Single Character Pinyin Spacing (for characters with multiple readings)
  • Swipe-Up to erase
  • Automatic Audio
  • Teaching Mode button
  • Right/Wrong Grading Button
  • Item adding plus button
  • Keyboard Navigation
  • Writing prompt auto grading

3 problems and a question:

  1. You can’t submit feedback using the contact button button if you can’t login
  2. If you mess up the password there’s a problem with the display and you can no longer get to the password box (Win8 tablet - there are workarounds but none the less.)
  3. failed password error clearly needs tidying up

    Is there a working skritter option for win8 tablets at the moment?

Just to add to this - when I do get in the only button that does anything is the study button - and that takes me to a blank screen. No option to set targets, settings cog, contact, and logout buttons do nothing

and the non-metro version of IE (v11) just gives me a blank screen. (I’ve cleared my cache between each attempt.)

Same for me. Just blank screens and unresponsive buttons.

It might be a good idea to display a message that explanes the HTML 5 doesn’t work on the iPad and give a redirect link to the App Store when you click on study while using the iPad.

At first I thought it was just the iPad but when I tried clicking study on Chrome and Firefox (on Win 7) I get the same thing, a wood background with nothing else.

@mikemills Right you are, should probably make the error message a bit less verbose (aka don’t just display the entire stringified json object).

@Benjamin @ddapore99 Looks like I’ll have to do a bit of debugging to figure out why things aren’t loading up on the study page. At the moment the html5 site is only aimed at desktop browsers and I’ve been testing using the latest of Chrome, Firefox, IE and Safari. If you’d loaded up the previous html5 version is might be a good idea to clear the cache for that site.

I don’t know if it helps or not, but I was getting further than this last week on the win 8 tablet. It was giving me a handful of cards or chars before hanging. It’s hung fetching the next card and it’s hung after having presented a writing canvas.

It’s now giving me a totally blank screen (all white) on launch on the desktop IE11 on win8 and the Skitter dashboard (with only the study button active) followed by a blank study screen (header row and wood background) on IE metro and android phone and tablet.

It is working for me now. I like the speed of things. Much faster than the current site, at first glance. But I’m only getting to practice tones.

One thing I found odd:

If you get the tone wrong by accident (the first tone in particular seems too sensitive to position), there’s no way to change it. You can mark it as correct, but it merely shows an incorrect tone in green, which really threw me off.

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@Benjamin sounds like a programming oversight that we’ll have to get fixed up. Glad to hear things are working at least!

Did you set a daily goal?

I made a note in the original post about the site only being focused on studying in a web browser. We’ll work on providing links to iOS and Android apps in the future.

I did set a goal but as of now it is not loading. It says 0 items. It would be nice if this linked to Beeminder in some way, Just a thought.

Goal takes a few seconds to update once it’s set. It’s possible that the Goal settings only pull from the time/items after the goal is set, but @josh will have to confirm that one.

@Benjamin The goal progress should load silently in the background when the page is first opened. It’s based on progress statistics that are fetched from the server. If you’ve reviewed a few items and it’s showing 0, then something isn’t working right. Is it showing 0 when you change the goal to one based on minutes as well?

It is set to minutes. But right now it’s displaying the number of items. At least the value is no longer 0.

So skritter 2 is just for html ar the moment?

@Xiaomai The plan is for HTML5 to replace the current flash site. Josh is building all of the features that we’re implementing by using the Skritter API. Once the features are all created and working properly we’ll roll them out in an updated version of Android.After those two clients are up and running we’ll be upgrading the iOS to match.

As we continue to add new page views and extra features to the study page, I’m curious how you guys feel about the new Skritter look? Are you finding the goals and monthly progress streak to be motivating factors when studying online?

We’d love to get your feedback! Feel free to leave comments here or send us your feedback via the Contact button on the site.


I’m also seeing some weird behaviour with tones, for example, 蔬菜 came up with two neutral tones (on the large character on the left). I think it misrecognised it and then when I selected “got it” didn’t correct it.

It’s a long time since I didn’t use raw squigs mode, so that confused me a little. The snapping of the strokes is a little distracting for me, it seems like they jump around first before getting into the right place.

I miss the touch shortcuts from iOS, e.g. double tap to show character, up to erase, but sounds like that’s coming. Also I think the jump backwards to previous word doesn’t work, and the jumping forward after getting characters right seems different.

No translations for example sentence and more info / stars missing for characters, I guess that will come in future though.

Streak is not too useful for me as I tend to study every day anyway at least a little. Also it seems a bit odd to cut it off at the beginning of the month. I’d love more detailed analytics and prediction, but I think that’s been discussed before. Goals are not a big priority for me either - I don’t have consistent time available for study, so although I have a mental goal of about an hour a day, averaged out over a week or two depending on how busy I am!

New design seems generally clear and neat.

Tested this with touch on a Windows 8.1 tablet, wish I had this when I started out with Skritter.

I think the new look is great, and I’m quite picky about webdesigns. Very clean. The streak thing is nice, although I study all but a few days a year so it’s not particularly meaningful to me. I hope we get to see some nice charts/ graphs/ badges implemented in this new design. Maybe some user profiles, with place to display those badges… room for user blogs… comment boxes for words and characters?!.. oh the possibilities are endless.

I have to say I hate having other people’s mnemonics in my face like they are. It’s one of my pet peeves with the iOS app. I automatically scan what’s on screens when they appear and the mnemonics are extremely distracting and hard to ignore. Is there any chance of at least making them a twisty or equivalent?

I should say I do like the rest of the layout - though I haven’t had a chance to have a proper look at it since before the announcement.

I got it working on android but only on a phone so far and that’s obviously unworkable at this stage. It’s still trying to start up on a win 8 tablet. Cleared the cache first. Dashboard has loaded and populated, with the exception of ‘list queue’ which is still going round in circles some 10 minutes later.

Despite some initial scepticism I do like the targets.