Missing word translation as a hint?

Hello Clozemasters! Someone mentioned in the subreddit:

In Lingvist, you get the translation of the whole sentence and also the translation of the missing word. That translation of the missing word can be more than one meaning of it. It prevents most of the confusions, and also helps to better understand the word.

One of the more common points of feedback that we get about Clozemaster is that the missing word can be ambiguous given the translation, so we’re always on the lookout for improvements there. Seeing that comment above, we thought we could probably do something similar.

Do you think it’d be helpful to have a translation of the missing word as a hint when playing text input?


Hints like this are only shown before answering, are editable, and can be turned off in the game settings (only on the web at the moment, will be toggle-able in an upcoming release of the mobile app as well).

Curious to hear what you think - would this be useful? Or would you immediately turn it off? Would something else be more useful? Thanks for any feedback/input!


If you can manage to get good translations, it sounds like a good idea. I will probably want to be able to see a difference in the visual presentation, so I can distinguish between automatic translations and my own hints, though.


This could help for sure!

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While it would be certainly helpful in many situations, I would again urge you to make this easy to turn off in a global way, because the one thing that has really helped me improve is the mental work I have to do in Clozemaster to put a sentence together from context alone. If you add this prompt, you are drawing focus away from the context and onto the singular missing word. Again, I would not like anyone who could profit from this system to be deprived of it, but I would definitely and globally opt out of it. Having to deal with the total context of the sentences has radicalised my learning and there is no way that I’m going back. Cheers


I’m inclined to agree with @JioMc; I go as much as possible on context, but if this works for others, then great.

The only thing is… I can see this working well enough for a language like Italian (more or less, give or take), but even on the “baby steps” level in German I’m finding some words which have a very different contextual meaning from the standard meaning that comes up when I follow the link to Wiktionary (for example). (I’d give some examples but I can’t recall good ones off the top of my head; I do recall that one was used as an auxiliary verb which changed the meaning quite dramatically.) For the word translation to be useful it would need to be the translation that applies to that specific context. There isn’t always a nice, neat one to one correlation between the word in the source language and the word in the target language , though I note from the example .gif that in some cases an expression rather than a corresponding word might be used.

I know a certain other site that shall remain nameless (but you can guess from the look of disgust on my face) that gives word translation hints, BUT they just dump a bucket of every possible translation into the dialog. The result is usually entries in the comments section saying “But Dubbo The Fowl’s hints said that word Y means X as well as Z!” Which it does, just not in that context.

How this would go with non-European languages is something beyond my pay grade, but there may be issues there as well, I suspect.

I don’t think it would be a bad improvement, but as with JioMc I don’t see myself using it. If I really can’t get the word I’ll grab the complete sentence translation. If I still can’t get it I’ll hit the multiple choice option. I too prefer to avoid thinking word by word if I can avoid it.


I agree with your extended critique @LuciusVorenusX… how, for example, to translate the particles in Japanese or Māori so that they transmit the native sense of their use, instead of a bowdlerized English cod-version? I also really enjoy being bamboozled by a sentence - “how the hell does That mean That!!!” - only to later realize that it’s a native idiomatic use. That’s part of why the superrandom world of Clozemaster is so good.


I, too, have my doubts about the viability of single-word translations, especially between languages far removed from each other, such as Finnish to English, or Japanese to French.

Does anybody remember the old behavior (until May 2020 ?), where all sentence translations from Tatoeba were displayed beside each other? I actually found it quite helpful, even if the presentation (the different translations were separated by commas) was not visually appealing and sometimes confusing. It was especially useful for learning Japanese, where one phrase can be translated in so many different ways. How about a new take on that instead?


Hi! Mike. it might be a very beneficial feature for a number of people to try . speaking for myself, i am trying to avoid any helping features and hints as much as i can. again, you have to know what helps your memory. mine gets lazy and loses its grasping power if i know the help is there. multiple choice is banned by me for that very reason. i think knowing what is working for you and using different features offered by clozemaster, one can tailor for himself or herself the best course of learning. thank you for giving all those choices!


I’ve thought long and hard about it, so as long as Cloze keeps me “thinking” and “learning in sentences”, I’m more than happy. But with the Italian course, I’m probably in the no-hints camp, having experienced hints in the “other place”. Sorry not to be more technical :wink:


Thanks for all the input! Good point about context for the translation, and it does go against the idea of Clozemaster a bit (figuring out the missing word from the context of the sentence). :slight_smile:

The way we have it in mind to work at the moment is that it’d be hints you can overwrite, same as how you can overwrite translations. The downside is that all the hints would look the same, just like how translations work.

Interesting idea about having additional translations of the entire sentence. We could probably make that toggle-able option as well.

We may put this idea on hold for now as it sounds like most of the feedback is that the hints would likely be turned off :slight_smile: and context / good hints would indeed be a bit tricky. If anyone feels this idea would be particularly helpful or you have any other thoughts please be sure to let us know, and thanks again for the all feedback so far! :raised_hands:


If I understand correctly, this is something I would love!

How I’m understanding it is, if for example in English “you” is used, and the target language does distinguish between 2nd person singular and plural, that it will show you the 2nd option after having correctly solved the close? And in languages which distinguish a formal “you” (and perhaps even by gender), you would see additional sentences to cover those options too?

The main reason I would really find this helpful, is because in Italian, between the different possibilities when seeing “you”, and the different tenses, it can be difficult to know which person(s) the cloze verb you’ve just solved actually belongs to. Seeing all the options would help learn the distinctions better.

Though I guess that was the purpose of the original hints too, if I understood that correctly? “walk 2nd person singlar”, “got up formal you female”?

Either way, I think key for me in terms of helpfulness and not taking away from the overall learning process would be for any of those to appear as information “after” having already solved the cloze (or failed to do so - then it might help figure out why).


Actually, the old behavior was this (in detail): If the Italian cloze was “Lei {{è}} bella”, and there were two English translations, “You are beautiful” and “She is beautiful”, you would see both translations, separated with a comma, where you would now only see one (possibly the oldest). This added some clutter, but it was helpful, because it made the cloze unambiguous.

I think you can actually still see the old behavior in some grammar collections.


Thank you for the clarification! This is exactly what I’ve been hoping to see for those many ambiguous sentences in Italian! I wouldn’t mind clutter, for me personally it wouldn’t need to be a super polished feature, it would just really help overall understanding :relaxed: Though I can imagine you wouldn’t want to overwhelm people with this info, so probably an opt-in feature would work best for it:
“Enable alternative clutter, are you sure?” → “Sì, volentieri!!”
I just thought perhaps it was too complicated to pull or integrate this info, but now I can be hopeful that maybe it can be re-enabled in a non-intrusive way at some point.

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