Tower of Babelfish
The Blog

In search of more efficient ways to learn languages.

  • Recent Posts

  • February 2014
    M T W T F S S
    « Dec    
  • Archives

  • Meta

  • Tags

  • Announcing and the Kickstarter!

    Posted on by

    After a loooong delay, I’m happy to finally have some announcements and updates!

    Fluent Forever Proofread

    Announcement The First: The book is done. It’s been edited, copy-edited and proof-read. Now, the letters and packages my publishers send me start off with “Here’s the book. If you want to change something, please don’t. Seriously. Stop. We’re taking any changes out of your advance. No. Stop it.” For those of you curious about what a proofread book looks like, feast your eyes on this baby: 350 single sided sheets of printer paper, corrected with a red color pencil. Awesome.

    Fluent ForeverAnnouncement The Second: The site is moving to All future updates will be located over there. Why? Because no one knows what a Tower of Babelfish is, and because Fluent Forever is a friggin awesome book and brand title. Apologies to all who enjoyed the fish theme; you have 30 days to appreciate it before I take it down foreverrrrrrr.

    Announcement The Third: For the next 29 days, the whole world is going to be all Kickstarter, all the time. Thus the giant, unignorable banner up top. This Kickstarter is my baby. It’s a tool I created when my editor asked me “OK, if pronunciation is so important, how do you actually learn it?” And I realized that my answer was “Well, if you had the right resources, you could learn it this way, but no one has made those resources yet…”

    Kickstarter LogoI’ve been planning it for about a year, and I’m currently unable to sleep out of excitement, and am writing to you now at 4:30am, after a hefty 4-hour-night’s sleep. The Kickstarter is off to a tremendous start: more than 25% funded after less than 14 hours, and I haven’t even announced it on the site yet. Insane. If you’re reading this, then do these three four five things:

    1. Check out the Kickstarter. If you like it, back it. Even $1 makes a huge difference; the more backers we get, the more the project will show up on the front page of Kickstarter.
    2. Share on Facebook. If you want something to copy/paste, try this:
      If you have ever wanted to learn a foreign language, check out this Kickstarter campaign: It’s an amazing project; help spread the word!
    3. Share on Twitter, if you use it! If you want 140 characters to copy/paste, try:
      Ever wanted to learn a foreign language? Check out this awesome Kickstarter campaign and help spread the word:
    4. Share on Google Plus, if you’re into that kind of thing.
    5. Share via eMail. Email tends to be a bit more likely to actually reach people, given all of Facebook’s promoted posts and ads and baby announcements with 700 Likes. Here’s a generic email to copy/paste:
      Happy December! A blogger I’m following – Gabe Wyner – is developing an amazing language learning app. He launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund its development and I’m helping him spread the word. Check it out at, and if you like it, please share it with your own friends and colleagues!

    That’s all for now. Now that the book’s done, my life’s starting to get in order and the Kickstarter has launched, I’m going to start updating the site frequently. I’ve said that before, but now I’m not lying to you. I promise.

    (PS: To everyone signed up for site updates via email, sorry for the double email today! Shouldn’t happen again!)

    4 thoughts on “Announcing and the Kickstarter!

    1. Rob

      Hi Gabe, great to see you pushing ahead with all these projects. Have backed the KS and have been looking forward to reading the book since you first announced it. The new training packs also sound great. Thanks for all the useful info you’ve shared over the years at no charge. It’s been brilliant. Will be sad to see the ‘Tower of Babelfish’ brand change. Although Fluent Forever is good, there’s nothing quite like an ancient history / Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy mashup.

    2. Georg

      Hello Gabriel,

      First off, thank you for this wonderful and resourceful site!

      Secondly, I understand your need to consolidate your future activities under your new brand.


      If it is possible at all though, please - *pretty please* - keep the tower of babelfish active at least as entry point. I found you through some link to this site and I worry that someone might miss out on this very intriguing concept of language lerning if those links would go dead.
      Also - ah, the geek inside of me - I’m *much* more likely to remember a tower of babelfish for the rest of my life [it felt like an instant 'click' in my mind: tower of babelfish ( "geeky :-) " ) - many pictures with fishes - learn language with pictures ( "me likey! want more!" )] when I think about language and cool than some “fluid-something, what was it again?” (yes, my physics background doesn’t help there )
      I know this will get less of an issue with wider spread of your new brand, but _please_ have a heart for us geeks and Douglas Adams fans.

      Thank you again and in advance,

      1. Gabriel Wyner Post author

        Hi Georg! Thanks so much for your note :)

        Alas, I must kill off the whole TowerofBabelfish idea, despite how much I too like the Douglas Adams reference and pictures of fish. It’s just too confusing to have two different domains for the same thing (and it wreaks havoc on my Google search rankings).

        As for dead links, there won’t be any; I’m going keep the domain as a forwarding service, so any links that direct a reader here will automatically redirect a reader to the equivalent page on

        Best regards

        1. Georg

          Hello Gabriel,

          Yes, the forwarding should keep everybody happy :-)

          BTW, I just added another cloze card to my ‘Misc’ deck:
          “Tower of Babelfish becomes {{c1::fluent-forever}}”
          Anki to the rescue again :-)



    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Note: For anti-spam reasons, if you put a link in your post, it will be moderated. Post *another* comment (without any links) referring to your other comment and I will look through the moderation queue and save it from certain doom