Flashcards with Excel

  Flashcards v1 in action.

So I've been wondering how to make a flashcards program for Chinese with the least amount of work, and I decided to go with Microsoft Excel and VBA. Why not use Quizlet, you say. Well, Quizlet doesn't show three languages like this (Hànzì, pīnyīn and the English translation), and modifying and adding stuff to this is a breeze.

It was an easy solution and took just a few hours to code it from scratch: just write a couple of simple macros and that's it. I always have fun while playing with Excel and, to be frank, coding in general! In Chinese you'd say

Tā duì nǎozi hěn hǎo!
It's good for the brain!

Excel is such a masterpiece and it has been that for over 20 years! It's so versatile that the possibilities are practically endless. Some years ago  I coded a macro to gather weather data and fuel prices from a web site. After a while I stopped it gathering the fuel prices because it got me so mad. Fuel prices, I mean.

Just paste your word list to the Quiz_data sheet, beginning from the cell A2. The A column should contain the Hànzì, B should contain the pīnyīn romanization, and the C column the English translation.

If you're interested in the nuts and bolts inside the program, I'll explain a bit: it starts with setting the cursor to A1 in the Quiz_data sheet. When you go to the Quiz sheet and press "Next word", it goes to Quiz_data's A2 and pastes the character to Quiz's E2. It all happens nice & tidy to the user's eyes; only the last row of each function updates the screen so you won't see the ugly updating process with the program flickering about, only the result. Please check the macros yourself to see what is happening and when.

It's very simple and easy to use. If you find it useful, please comment :-)


BTW: Don't forget to allow macros in Excel!

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