What is this strategy cited in manual?

I did this for a backlog of 800 cards with filtered subdecks. Worked
very well for me.

Just Due filter with: “is:due prop:due>-7”

Over Due filter with: “is:due prop:due<=-7”

The Just Due deck will then contain cards that became due in the past
week. That’s the deck you should study every day as it gets the cards
that become due regularly. With this you can study as if there wasn’t
any backlog.

The Over Due deck will contain your backlog, cards which you didn’t
study in time. You can study them the same way you would study new
cards. They go back into the regular cards, so the number of overdue
will never grow as long as you keep your Just Due deck in check.

Could someone briefly explain this strategy, I don’t understand it.

is:due prop:due>-7 -> cards that you were supposed to study from 7 days ago till today but you still haven’t studied
is:due prop:due<=-7 -> cards that you were supposed to study more than 7 days ago but you still haven’t studied

you can just set the filtered deck on relative overdueness so it’ll show you older overdue cards first instead of doing this (and dividing overdue cards to 2 decks).

Suppose you have a deck with a 2.000 cards backlog. Anki shows you the cards in the order due. That is, it will first show, let’s say, those cards due a year ago; only then those cards due 11 months ago; then, those due 10 months ago, and so on.

As your cards have an enormous overdueness, you’ll probably have forgotten lots of things. Your lapse rate will be high. Suppose in your first day dealing with this large backlog you were able to answer 200 cards, and that your lapse rate was around 30%. It means that you will have sth around 60 cards that you failed today, and that would be presented tomorrow to be reviewed again. But as Anki show cards in the order due, there are 1.800 cards to be seen before. Probably that will take you, let’s say, an entire month. So, that card you failed today, and should be reviewed tomorrow, will probably only be presented to you in more than a month. And you’ll have forgotten it again.

That doesn’t work. So, what this strategy proposes is to keep up to date the “fresh” overdue cards. Rebuilding every day the “Just due” filtered deck, you will, in our example, review that 60 lapsed cards tomorrow, as you should. After dealing with these just due cards (in which your lapse rate will be low), you can tackle with a bunch of those very old cards (very high overdueness). You can take the time it takes to subdue all that deck, with the certainty that those cards you are dealing with will not be forgotten, as long as you keep your “Just Due” cards up-to-date.

That’s the idea. I have used it and am very sure this is the better approach possible for dealing with these things you shelved for a long period, for any reason, but that now you want to recover.


just to share my input. I use hoochie mama add-on, which reorders the review queue. I do use it for backlogs, setting the order of queue to most overdue cards first. i.e. overriding the due order. So I only review from one large deck and I keep reviewing lapsed cards along next most overdue cards. In my personal opinion, this simplifies the process to get to a backlog which took me almost a month to overcome (~12K cards).

doesn’t >-7 mean cards due within the last week?

It does

I have 2 questions.

I didn’t understand some things but I think your main point is this: With default Anki, by the time you go through all the overdue cards first, you did not properly relearn many failed overdue cards. The strategy in the manual allows you to see the most overdue cards while also being able to properly relearn failed overdue cards. Is this correct?

If so,wouldn’t this be an improved strategy: One should not see the most overdue cards (cards that have the most days elapsed since their due date) but rather the most relative overdue cards. Also, one filtered deck should have prop:due>-1 prop:due<1, which allows you to relearn cards properly & another deck with prop:due<=-1 to cover all overdue cards. Does this strategy sound good?

Did you switch around your definitions by accident?

corrected it :expressionless:

The main point, as far as I can see, is not about which overdue cards will I attack first. For this last point you may use sundry approaches, such as relative overdueness, or the default Anki procedure of using the “absolute” overdueness. Cards that were due a long time ago will very probably have been forgotten, and there is nothing you can do to change this fact. The approach of relative overdueness helps when this relative overdueness in not too big, but if you see today cards with a 10 day interval a year after it was due, probably no approach will save you from failing most of these cards. The remaining fact is that you lost the efforts you have made on those cards, as you didn’t follow the rules the algorithm sets upon you. If you do not follow the schedule, there is no assurance of remembering things. What is lost, is lost. Period.

But the big concern of this technique the manual presents of creating a “Just Due” filtered deck is to ensure that this new effort you are currently doing trying to bring back that knowledge you lost is not going to be in vain. It is like telling Anki “Ok, I failed with you, but it is not going to happen anymore. I’ll respect your schedule”.

And why do you need this approach? Because Anki algorithm is not fitted to handle these situations; if you have abandoned your deck for a long time, the default behavior of the software not necessarily will be the most efficient to help you getting out of the problem you created to yourself.

The strategy you proposed is way of answering the question “what cards to attack first?”. You can create filtered deck choosing “cards selected by” - relative overdueness. But in my point of view, if the cards have been abandoned for a long time, there would be little or no benefit at all compared with Anki standard approach, as it would continue to show you first the cards that are too much overdued, and you would probably fail them.

If the cards have been abandoned for a long time, I prefer attack first cards that are not so much overdued. That is, my approach is the inverse of the “relative overdueness”; I prefer attacking first cards with low relative overdueness, in which my chances of not failing are still high; the very overdued cards I already forgot and nothing will change this fact. But if I can save at least those cards not so overdued yet, great! A way of implementing this approach is to set the “Just Due” filtered deck with increasing negative values. E.g., commence with “is:due prop:due>-7”. When I see all these cards, I change the options to “is:due prop:due>-15”; after seeing all cards, -30 days, and so on. This will bring me these cards I most probably still remember and can yet avoid failing. And from time to time I go to the regular deck, that will present me the cards in the order due (the very old cards, which I will probably fail anyway).

I see no point in creating the second filtered deck “Over Due filter” with: “is:due prop:due<=-7”, as the manual says; it only makes sense if you will, for example, choose to use the relative overdueness. Otherwise, you can go directly to the home deck to see the older cards.

The most important thing is to have the “Just Due” filtered deck to ensure your current effort will be preserved.

The other thing you proposed of using two filtered decks, one of them set “prop:due>-1 prop:due<1” and the other “prop:due<=-1” does not make sense to me. The first one will show you the cars due exactly today. I think the “Just Due” settings “is:due prop:due>-7” are better, as if you do not see and rebuild it for one or two days, you will still see that cards that you very probably will not fail and so you do not loose your recent effort. Remember the point is to keep this filtered deck always up-to-date, leaving the trash in the other deck, to be dealt with when you have the stomach to deal with cards that you fail a lot, what is very disappointing. And the second (prop:due<=-1), as I said before, I think you don’t need it, only if you select “relative overdueness”; and if you will, you cannot use this “-1”; you MUST see as soon as possible these cards that you almost certainly did not forget yet, otherwise you will loose your current effort; use the proposed “-7” instead, or something like it.

I don’t know why I wrote this giant text! Sorry about that!


I’ve been using a filtered deck to hold my backlog and the main deck for anything I’ve reviewed recently (there’s a bug in anki mobile which means the opposite strategy won’t work)

Could you please describe the bug on a separate post?

Turns out it’s not actually a bug but rather just how the v2 and v3 schedulers behave when the “reschedule” option is turned off for a filtered deck.

Hello Hugo, hope you are doing well.

Suppose that today I am done with is:due prop:due>-7. But today ANKI does not allow me to create a is:due prop:due>-15 option. How can I create it or how long a need to wait to create it? Please see image bellow.

Attentive to your prompt response. Thanks in advance.


Anki will not allow you to create a filtered deck with an empty search. I advise you to create with a larger period (like prop:due>-30), that will not be an empty search (you can try it on the browser first to see if there will be any match) and, in the future, change it to the desired prop:due>-30 (I mean when at least one card will satisfy the search criteria).

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Hello Hugo, thanks for your response.

Today I was able to complete 8 cards. After completing these cards, how long to see them again or more than 8 cards?

I tried prop:due>-7 today and I have 416 cards. That means I have those cards available?

If I change to prop:due>-15 I have the same amount of cards. Same with prop:due>-30. I am a little confused.