I’ve talked about using iMacros in the past. Basically, you click a button, a dialogue pops up and asks you “Which word do you want to look up?” and in 4 seconds, you have a Google Images link to the word, a Forvo.com recording, a bilingual dictionary entry and a monolingual dictionary entry. Magic. Typically, it’s a bit of a pain to set up, but in preparation for an upcoming workshop, I’ve decided to make it a lot easier.
Tips, tutorials and resources to aid you on your path towards fluency.
This is some early bookstore research for a bunch of foreign language dictionary reviews. I went to two large bookstores (The enormous Half Price Books and the equally enormous Barnes & Noble in Dallas) and wrote down the names of pretty-much every dictionary they had in every language they carried, and also noted whether they included pronunciation information (and if so, whether it was IPA, some formal system (pinyin, romaji), some random system they invented, or some terrible English approximation [Bawn-JOOR]). I’ve tried to provide Amazon links to as many dictionaries as possible.
Well so much for updating over the summer! I think I imagined having a bit more free time to fill, but instead worked ~14 hours a day all the way through. So! Russian thoughts and results:
In the last Q&A, I talked about getting words in context from Google images + Google translate. Let’s talk about this a bit, because it’s an extraordinary pair of tools.
This might be for a somewhat small audience, but if you have a jailbroken iPhone, there’s a great $2 app in the Cydia store that lets you customize a 5-row, 41 character keyboard (and if you really want to go nuts with it, you can set it up with 82 characters, taking advantage of the shift key).
This tutorial will explain how to set this keyboard up to make a Russian Phonetic keyboard layout, which doesn’t seem to exist on the iPhone at all.
I’ve been getting some really great questions via the contact form, and I thought some of the answers might be helpful for others, so I’m taking some of the questions and answers and putting them here! Today we’ll cover a few questions regarding grammar.
Q: How do you use Anki to work on grammar?
A: Most of the time, I use fill-in-the-blank style cards - the sort of stuff you’d see in any grammar workbook (in fact, I usually just copy a few examples from whatever grammar workbook I end up buying):
Front: Right now, he (to walk) to school. Back: Right now, he is walking to school.
Front: Right now, he is walking ___ school. Back: Right now, he is walking to school.
Q: What about verb conjugations? Do you do conjugation tables?
Recently, a reader asked me whether I had heard of the Assimil method, and whether I’d recommend it or not. I had never really looked into them, and now that I’ve done a bit of research, I can comment a bit.