AnkiWeb Shared Decks: Filtering to limit noise

In my opinion the 3 pillars of Anki that make it great are:

  • Anki itself
  • Mobile options
  • Shared Decks

But AnkiWeb and Shared Decks do not seem to get the love and attention that the other 2 get.

I consider AnkiWeb as the only source of shared decks, but finding good decks is actually quite frustrating.

This suggestion is to help find relevant decks more easily.
This would be done via search filters.
Currently you can search for keywords, but that produces a bunch of noise.

First click the Link to show “Japanese” decks.
Then, search for “core”. The intent is to find Japanese core 2/6k etc decks.

What is returned is a list of about 230 decks. Some contain the word “core” most are Japanese (coincidentally).
Remove all decks that don’t have “core” in the title and you are still left with ~200.
Manually remove all non Japanese core vocab decks and you get close to 70 decks.

Most of these are just re-uploads and some have slight tweaks.
But the main point here is that less than 1/3 of the results matched the expected criteria of “Japanese” And “Core”

I know the “Japanese” link is essentially a search for Japanese, and that gets overridden by the search for “core”, but its not obvious at first, at least I didn’t think that was the case when I first used it.

What I suggest is better filtering. It might require that decks be uploaded with more information, things like predefined tags. ‘Japanese’ as an example of a tag.
More filters can be to search for exact matches, to search only title, or description, or both. To show only decks that have been updated in the last x days, or have x number of downloads.

I could name some other suggestions, but they are probably more technically involved. Things like having a Git like source control over the decks and the ability to Fork a deck so that there is always some deck lineage so people can see where things are coming from. The ability to pull deck changes from AnkiWeb and “Merging” the changes that you want (to allow the author to fix issues, but still allow you to maintain your local changes where appropriate)
These changes are all trying to solve the problem of High Noise and low quality decks.
Maybe an archived database or tag for decks that have not had a download in a while. Decks without downloads could be a sign the deck is no longer a useful deck even if it has amazing ratings. In that case it would be nice to filter out such decks to show only the decks people are currently interested in.