itt: stories of yr attempts to master tongues via DUOLINGO

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i am learning welsh obviously (plus brushing up french)

the welsh is going badly -- french is telling me i am 24% fluent, which is a fib imo

mark s, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:23 (two months ago) Permalink

should I install this and see how bad my German has become, y/n

the Hannah Montana of the Korean War (DJP), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:28 (two months ago) Permalink

(I'm already downloading it)

the Hannah Montana of the Korean War (DJP), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:29 (two months ago) Permalink

Duolingo is a great way to absorb language basics and grammar rules, but once you have that stuff down and are in the mode of adding vocabulary I found it kind of inefficient.

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:29 (two months ago) Permalink

xp You will learn many duck-related German sentences ime

JoeStork, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:32 (two months ago) Permalink

i have been surprised how much french i still know in terms of vocab: my grammar was and is terrible

mark s, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:33 (two months ago) Permalink

polyphonic otm, I finished the French tree and have never gone back, currently use Memrise (and used Lingvist until I ran out of words) to build vocab

rob, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:35 (two months ago) Permalink

in welsh i have discovered nothing about ducks but i have encountered a DRAGON (draig)

mark s, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:38 (two months ago) Permalink

I completed the Japanese Duolingo and it is good for absorbing things by wrote but I grew frustrated with never having any of the grammar explained to me. It’s provided a good base.

There’s some more discussion of Duolingo

Do You Speak A Second Language?
日本語は話せます 🇯🇵

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:39 (two months ago) Permalink

pimsleur >> duolingo

𝔠𝔞𝔢𝔨 (caek), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:39 (two months ago) Permalink

well but Duolingo is free

rob, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:44 (two months ago) Permalink

honestly DL is more like a fun app that helps you read stuff in a foreign language

rob, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:45 (two months ago) Permalink

huh 46% fluent

not bad I guess

the Hannah Montana of the Korean War (DJP), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:45 (two months ago) Permalink

Was going to say, however tell me more about why pimsleur is good? Everything else I have been trying has been lower cost but really falls down on getting me to speak. I’d pay for some live interaction.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 19:51 (two months ago) Permalink

I used to be fluent in Portuguese but haven't used in 20 years - wonder if this could get me back on my bullshit.

xyzzzz__, Tuesday, 7 November 2017 20:27 (two months ago) Permalink

Duolingo fluency shield suffers from grade inflation especially when you are progressing through, say, the first third of the course or have just taken the placement test. At some points if starts to drop off and decay and you may regret giving into your ex-clever schoolboy’s craving for this particular form of external gratification.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 21:49 (two months ago) Permalink

Think last word should have been "validation."

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 7 November 2017 22:00 (two months ago) Permalink

whenever i type "nos lau" (thursday night) it tells me i have a typo and that the correct spelling is "nos lau"

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 09:20 (two months ago) Permalink

Did you type a lower case “el” (wrong) or a capital “eye” (correct)?

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 09:42 (two months ago) Permalink

oh right that makes sense yes

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 09:43 (two months ago) Permalink

That was really it?

Some of the answers in some of the courses are messed up so that it will tell you about an alternate answer or typo which seems to be dependent on some punctuation, or even some other “invisible punctuation.” There seem to even be cases where it is supposed to accept some letters from say, a standard English alphabet, without certain diacritical and just tell you to “mind the accents” but it gets into some looking glass world where it doesn’t accept the correct foreign alphabet letter. Feel like I️ saw this happen in Turkish, with the non-dotted i, the ı.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 09:56 (two months ago) Permalink

i haven't gone back in and checked but yes, it's quite likely tha:, since i realised when i read yr post that i was listening to DL's pronunciation of Iau and thinking "wow the initial i sound in front of those vowels is really like an L isn't it?" -- based on assuming my grasp of welsh pronunciation is actually worse than it is

(the pronunciation i learnt as a kid IS different to the version they're using: spoken welsh has surprisingly strong regional variation: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/13474058/Dialects-much-more-than-a-simple-north-south-divide)

(but it's not really the consonants that vary)

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:04 (two months ago) Permalink

Ah, some weird keyboard autocorrect is now putting something strange when I type the letter capital “eye” I.

Speaking of which, at some point iOS seems to have added a Welsh keyboard, which may um, assist you in your answers.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:04 (two months ago) Permalink

"wow the initial i sound in front of those vowels is really like an L isn't it?"

or maybe the other way round, anyway i was struck by how different their pronunciation was than mine would be -- which is because i was misreading the letter

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:06 (two months ago) Permalink

Sometimes wonder if the Welsh as taught is just some sort of approximation standard that is in fact spoken by no one at all, like Bokmål/Nynorsk, I️ think.

How is your pronunciation of the letter double el?

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:12 (two months ago) Permalink

Ach, still the weird “ego problem” or “ego trip” with the capital eye. Think I️ need to delete my autocorrect dictionary.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:13 (two months ago) Permalink

Tom, delete ILX all my bookmarks my autocorrect dictionary now!

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:15 (two months ago) Permalink

Ah, that didn’t seem to work. I’m stymied.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:16 (two months ago) Permalink

my double ll pronunciation is p good i think! the nearest large town to where we went on family holidays when i was a kid is machynlleth and i know how ppl who live in it say it

this was before welsh was actually taught in schools -- indeed, it was actively discouraged in schools back then, and i know someone who was made to leave school at 16 because he preferred to speak welsh (as did his entire family, of hill farmers)

(he became a mechanic and a builder, and is now very comfortably off and owns half the town)

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:18 (two months ago) Permalink

Ah. I have never been in the presence of a Welsh speaker as far as I know, apart from John Cale at an instore.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:25 (two months ago) Permalink

I against I against I

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:27 (two months ago) Permalink

(Had to chose the *RONG* spelling for each of those eyes to get the correct one)

Seems to me the pronunciation of Welsh, especially the “ll,” involves a lot more spittle than, say, English.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:30 (two months ago) Permalink

At one point I was having some problems with the days of the week with when to put the word for day in there, such as “dydd Iau.” Seem to have sorted it, can’t remember what the problem really was.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:39 (two months ago) Permalink

The other thing to remember of course about the “i” is that the word for Thursday starts with j for Jupiter-or Jove! do u see?! in most Romance languages.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:47 (two months ago) Permalink

yes i haven't worked out when not to use Dydd yet!

(tho i also haven't yet been marked wrong on either, and have been assuming -- perhaps wrongly -- that they are effectively interchangeable, at least in this limited context)

ooh handy steer on the root of the day names, i'd spotted they were "a bit like French" but hadn't taken it any further

mark s, Wednesday, 8 November 2017 10:50 (two months ago) Permalink

To throw a spanner in your welsh works - Memrise has a course in Belter Cant.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Wednesday, 8 November 2017 11:01 (two months ago) Permalink

Sut mae, Marc? Sut dych chi?

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 November 2017 01:13 (two months ago) Permalink

Dych chi eisiau coffi?

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 November 2017 01:17 (two months ago) Permalink

Learning Dutch thru this atm and I like it.

Acid Hose (Capitaine Jay Vee), Thursday, 9 November 2017 01:17 (two months ago) Permalink

Hartelijk gefeliciteerd!

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 November 2017 01:25 (two months ago) Permalink

Both the Dutch and Welsh courses have been spruced up in the past few months, so you guys are on the cutting edge.

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 November 2017 01:27 (two months ago) Permalink

/too much time on Duolingo

Bazooka Jobim (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 9 November 2017 02:50 (two months ago) Permalink

"The grapheme k was also used more commonly than in the modern alphabet, particularly before front vowels.[3] The disuse of this letter is at least partly due to the publication of William Morgan's Welsh Bible, whose English printers, with type letter frequencies set for English and Latin, did not have enough k letters in their type cases to spell every /k/ sound as k, so the order went "C for K, because the printers have not so many as the Welsh requireth";[5] this was not liked at the time, but has become standard usage."

"why doesn't welsh have the letter k?"
"we ran out that one time and never restocked"

mark s, Thursday, 9 November 2017 09:46 (two months ago) Permalink

grrrr i am just as bad now at grammatical gender in french as i was aged 13: le cheval but la souris whyyyyyyyyyyyy pourquooooooiii

mark s, Friday, 10 November 2017 11:06 (two months ago) Permalink

some rules and patterns here (but of course no clue why le cheval but la souris):
http://www.french-linguistics.co.uk/grammar/le_or_la_in_french.shtml

mark s, Friday, 10 November 2017 11:07 (two months ago) Permalink

my devoted year+ on duolingo french got me enough of the basics that I was able to get a civil servant job in France where I speak French full time. it helped that I was living in France most of that time and that I'd already spent a lot of time reading french (or trying to, with much dictionary use) and that I already spoke Spanish pretty well (son of a native speaker but didn't grow up speaking it, only learned it in school). so I am yay duolingo!

I spent some time on the japanese tree earlier this year as I learn that language next but I'm going to need more than just duolingo to do it because I don't have a great sense of the grammar whereas learning a second romance language, I already grokked the main structures, what I really needed was enough confidence in applying those structures to go ahead and speak it irl.

although I think the japanese accent is easier than the french accent, so duolingo may be ok in that regard (japanese mostly sounds like it looks, unlike french)

droit au butt (Euler), Friday, 10 November 2017 15:55 (two months ago) Permalink

I'm doing German which I'm already sorta conversational in as my Dad is from there. I wasn't raised speaking it though and what I do know is only what I've picked up listening to him speak with friends and relatives and the times that I've spent there. I'm really enjoying it so far though and am excited to improve :).

Benson and the Jets (ENBB), Friday, 10 November 2017 16:03 (two months ago) Permalink

i just discovered the chats-with-bots feature (after several days of just ignoring the you-have-mail signal): i like that it goes "excellent response!" after what is (in another, more accurate sense) a pretty basic not-actually-rude response

mark s, Friday, 10 November 2017 16:14 (two months ago) Permalink

I spent some time on the japanese tree earlier this year as I learn that language next but I'm going to need more than just duolingo to do it because I don't have a great sense of the grammar whereas learning a second romance language, I already grokked the main structures, what I really needed was enough confidence in applying those structures to go ahead and speak it irl.

I can recommend the ‘Human Japanese’ App for this.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Friday, 10 November 2017 20:29 (two months ago) Permalink

"I want 91 lemons"

Do you? Do you really?

mark s, Thursday, 23 November 2017 16:15 (one month ago) Permalink

Psst! It’s a U2 reference.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 23 November 2017 16:29 (one month ago) Permalink

Also, should we post here when we get Duolingo feedback

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 23 November 2017 16:30 (one month ago) Permalink

Anyway the Health Shield is a much better deal and as well as being more useful than just buying a refill

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 23 November 2017 16:54 (one month ago) Permalink

Dragons appear in the Korean course as well.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 02:16 (one month ago) Permalink

except for french (35% fluent!) i am basically spinning my wheels on practice sets to keep my health ok

mark s, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 10:01 (one month ago) Permalink

If you use web/desktop or Android you don’t have to deal with that.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 11:23 (one month ago) Permalink

Or on iOS you could also buy a Health Shield and forge ahead for half an hour without worrying about that

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 11:24 (one month ago) Permalink

wtf are you guys talking about

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 11:39 (one month ago) Permalink

i think practice is a good thing!

mark s, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 11:51 (one month ago) Permalink

also i just got through my first tranche of vietnamese -- blimey what a lot of hard-to-distinguish diacritical marks

mark s, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 11:52 (one month ago) Permalink

Practice is a good thing, except on those days when you want to learn some new stuff - so you can practice it later!- and keep running out of health and having to go back to the well and repractice earlier stuff.

wtf are you guys talking about
Have you used this app? On an iPhone? In that case it assigned you a circle of five arcs of health which you lose when you submit a wrong answer on a new lesson, one of which will be automatically restored every four hours or so, otherwise you can regenerate by practicing old lessons or purchasing in store with lingots. No health means no new lessons can be studied.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 12:09 (one month ago) Permalink

hmm i haven't used it in a couple of years, i don't remember that system. i finished my "tree" and then did a couple of bonuses lessons and that seemed to be all the content that was on offer.

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 12:36 (one month ago) Permalink

Do people itt generally type the answers in or speak into the mic?

I have been typing only, but it does feel like I am neglecting a crucial language skill. Don't want to disturb the bf with repetitive badly pronounced foreign sentences. Maybe I should creep into the bathroom to hiss them into my phone for 20 minutes every day

(also just a lot more comfortable with typing and with the accuracy of rating typing vs speech in general, tho it's hard to type diacritics and it's frustrating to be slowed down by them on the timed quizzes)

a passing spacecadet, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 13:53 (one month ago) Permalink

do the speaking

i turned that part off on public transportation but otherwise your instincts are pretty right on imo

speaking around your bf might be good practice too, for getting over jitters of embarrassment! which is often a stumbling block when actually using a language in practice

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 13:56 (one month ago) Permalink

hmm i just used the word "practice" to mean two entirely opposite things

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 13:56 (one month ago) Permalink

Probably would be good practice for getting over the embarrassment, but maybe not for not being really annoying to be around!

I know the embarrassment is v real tho, I had a German neighbour for a year or two while I was learning German and did not dare to wish him so much as a Guten Tag

where I am at: I did a bit of German on this thing a while ago to supplement in-person lessons, though I am a completist and started at the beginning and never got near my actual level before getting bored. Since then I have dabbled with Irish and Czech but not got past the first few lessons of either. Never tried a Slavic language before and found even basic Czech greetings dishearteningly hard to get straight in my head.

Lesson 1 Czech has (or had, a month ago) an audio phrase which is just blank audio and the comments suggest it'd been like that for some time, which is a bit off-putting. iirc if your Czech L1 audio quiz is silent the answer is something like "thank you, good evening". Should get back into it but I hope there isn't more duff audio later.

a passing spacecadet, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 14:03 (one month ago) Permalink

also i just got through my first tranche of vietnamese -- blimey what a lot of hard-to-distinguish diacritical marks

It took me like three months of living in Vietnam before I realized ư and ủ were not the same sound

Vinnie, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 14:48 (one month ago) Permalink

just read this Wired article about Duolingo (which was interesting, but stopped just as I thought it was warming up):
http://www.wired.co.uk/article/duolingo-unique-view-on-learning-language

where I read that

It knows which users are least likely to progress (English speakers learning Turkish and Irish, it turns out)

so I may not be the only person to bail out of Irish after two evenings...

a passing spacecadet, Wednesday, 29 November 2017 16:51 (one month ago) Permalink

One problem with Turkish course is fuzzy logic is sometimes broken with respect to what it will accept as a correct answer:
https://www.duolingo.com/comment/25182151/Lesson-ki-shows-as-not-correct

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 29 November 2017 23:42 (one month ago) Permalink

I actually had that exact problem. I was doing that lesson on the iPhone and it wouldn’t take any answer I would give. I tried without punctuation, with all the punctuation as giving in the furnishes correct answer and a few other combinations in between. I finally switched to the laptop to finish the lesson or maybe switched to another lesson or even language for the duration of my Health Shield. Also had the lesser problem today where it wouldn’t match the capital dotted i from the Turkish keyboard with the same letter in the answer and I had to switch to lower case i.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 01:23 (one month ago) Permalink

Houston, bir sorunumuz var.

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 01:27 (one month ago) Permalink

Also seems to sometimes require the word “bir” for “a” when one might not think it is needed

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 01:30 (one month ago) Permalink

PRATİK YAP

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 01:47 (one month ago) Permalink

Btw, already knew fluency percentage is pretty bogus and just received some kind of definitive gaze proof of this

Modern Zounds in Undiscovered Country (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 01:55 (one month ago) Permalink

in the real world i have a bizarre German language level that is full of fancy vocab with persistent entry level grammar failures.
duo says i'm 65% fluent which is so bogus it's laughable.
it's free! what do we expect?
at level 23 the questions are the same as when i began.
earlier, duo responded to feedback about androgogically useless or unnatural questions, now they've removed the option to do so.
so much practical language that is simply missing.

massaman gai, Thursday, 30 November 2017 07:28 (one month ago) Permalink

A sentence that persistently shows up in the entry-level Korean, for both myself and others: 'yes, men are people.'

the ghost of tom, choad (thomp), Thursday, 30 November 2017 07:43 (one month ago) Permalink

#notallmen

mark s, Thursday, 30 November 2017 10:16 (one month ago) Permalink

Oes draig gyda ti?

Anne Git Yorgun (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 23:03 (one month ago) Permalink

Nac oes

Anne Git Yorgun (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 November 2017 23:03 (one month ago) Permalink

HELLO DERE

Anne Git Yorgun (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 10 December 2017 21:24 (one month ago) Permalink

I did the french and spanish twice all the way through all powered up and I really had to use italki to progress further.

Yerac, Monday, 11 December 2017 03:12 (one month ago) Permalink

i am currently endlessly cycling in practice mode to keep up my streak but always too tired and/or busy to feel ready to progress at all

mark s, Monday, 11 December 2017 09:05 (one month ago) Permalink

I'm approaching 500 days and might finally give up at that point as I feel it stopped teaching me much quite some time ago. My only motivation now is maintaining my streak.

brain (krakow), Monday, 11 December 2017 09:24 (one month ago) Permalink

It definitely gave me a great base for learning a bit more deeply elsewhere though and I would always recommend it. Might try a new language instead to try and bring back the fun of it.

brain (krakow), Monday, 11 December 2017 09:28 (one month ago) Permalink

anybody try Rosetta Stone? it was the gold standard for awhile. also cost its weight in gold iirc

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Monday, 11 December 2017 09:29 (one month ago) Permalink

Rosetta Stone for Vietnamese was ok, used it for a while. They didn't provide any explanation of concepts, in order to make it totally immersive, which was super frustrating for stuff that wasn't intuitive

Vinnie, Monday, 11 December 2017 10:03 (one month ago) Permalink

I cannot recommend italki enough if you actually want to be forced to speak aloud and figure out what you would likely talk about in another language. When I lived in Lyon, so many French people were like, "why do you know this word?" I kept saying L'INTERNET!

Yerac, Monday, 11 December 2017 14:38 (one month ago) Permalink

HI DERE

Burru Men Meet Burryman ina Wicker Man (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 16 December 2017 23:41 (one month ago) Permalink

This cross-training/laddering definitely challenging and useful, not just a novelty stunt.

Burru Men Meet Burryman ina Wicker Man (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 16 December 2017 23:54 (one month ago) Permalink

How's yr soft mutation, mark?

Steely Rodin (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 27 December 2017 15:54 (three weeks ago) Permalink

lol i "took a break" before xmas and have not yet got back on con ngựa as they say in vietnam

mark s, Wednesday, 27 December 2017 16:18 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Just made up a bad bilingual joke and am feeling compelled to post it here.

Steely Rodin (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 29 December 2017 01:12 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Doesn’t quite work though, so never mind, I guess

Steely Rodin (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 29 December 2017 01:17 (three weeks ago) Permalink

Okay, it was something to do with someone offering Steve Martin chocolate covered ants in Paris and Steve raising his hands and saying “Fourmis”?

Dr. Winston ‘Merritone’ Blecch (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 31 December 2017 20:32 (two weeks ago) Permalink

« Fourmis? »

Dr. Winston ‘Merritone’ Blecch (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 31 December 2017 20:32 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Almanca dilinde artık %35 oranında akacılığa ulaştın!

Dr. Winston ‘Merritone’ Blecch (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 31 December 2017 20:35 (two weeks ago) Permalink

I am augmenting my Duolingo practice of Swedish in two ways in 2018:

- signing up for MHz Choice, an Amazon Prime channel that offers tons of international TV shows with English subtitles for $7.99/month; they have tons of Swedish crime shows
- reading Swedish crime novels with a dictionary close at hand; I've been able to find cheap paperbacks on eBay

grawlix (unperson), Monday, 1 January 2018 15:56 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Cool. Maybe you should start standalone thread for that. But maybe not

The Harmony Illustrated Encyclopedia of Blecch (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 1 January 2018 16:52 (two weeks ago) Permalink


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