Short Background

I started learning Emacs 5 months ago and it has been a tough but awesome experience! I would like to get more muscle memory on some keybindings and commands and I think a flashcard system could help me. Thus, I tried using Anki. I even found this Anki deck that seems thorough.

Unfortunately, Anki is too expensive for me. As a consequence, I was looking for (cheaper) alternatives. As an accident, I came across org drill. What a good surprise! Using Emacs itself as a flesh card tool to improve my learning of Emacs :)

Real question

1 - Is there a way to convert this anki card file (.akp) to .org (with org-drill markers)?

2 - In case there is not, what would be your suggestion to tackle the problem? Would you build a short script to do the conversion? How would be the draft of this script? Maybe a task that is too challenging? Is it hard to know the potential quality of the file conversion without really trying?

3 - After knowing that I want to train Emacs keybindings with ord-drill, what would be your suggestion? Do you know a .org file to train on org-drill about Emacs?


  • 1
    I'll give you my own very personal opinion: you're "over-engineering" your Emacs journey. I've used org-drill and it certainly helped me but I don't see how it could in this case. Learning Emacs is rather easy. I have been using Emacs for 3 years and learn things EVERY day. Use emacs, discover and explore it (hit C-h C-h), read parts of the manuals (Emacs, packages, Elisp, etc) as the need comes, etc. The only external source worth reading is "Mastering Emacs". Emacs is just a tool. There's usually REAL work to be done.
    – aadcg
    Oct 9, 2021 at 13:08
  • 1
    You may find these ref cards useful: gnu.org/software/emacs/refcards.
    – aadcg
    Oct 9, 2021 at 13:12
  • 1
    You could manipulate the .akp file: it's a zip archive that contains a Sqlite3 database. The database contains five tables, presumably to satisfy the needs of the anki applciation, but the notes table contains the text of the cards. But I agree with @aadcg: instead of writing programs to scrape the database and make cards in a different format, you could do the Emacs tutorial C-h t) and read the manual (C-h i g(emacs)) and practice, practice, practice. It's no different than playing the piano, except that it doesn't sound so bad when you hit the wrong keys :-)
    – NickD
    Oct 9, 2021 at 14:22
  • Thanks, guys. I decided to try this out: github.com/pdelfino/emacs-flashcards Let's see how it goes! Oct 13, 2021 at 22:52


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