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TAC 2014 - dEhiN - Page 11 - UniLang

TAC 2014 - dEhiN

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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Dr. House » 2014-10-26, 20:11

dEHIN: You're right about that.

Saim: Where is that coming from? Did you hear him not speaking it? Plus, it's evident that he is a polyglot, if you've seen his videos. You need to take in account, that a video recording can be and usually is worse than a normal, relaxed conversation. I've heard a phone interview with Ziad and his English was superior to what he'd shown us in the video. Also if you speak so many languages, nobody really expects you to know them at a C2 level. B2 is a fluency already.

The languages shown in Ziad's videos were: English, Arabic (MSA plus dialect), French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Russian,Polish, Hindi, Hebrew, Mandarin, Japanese and Vietnamese.
¨
EDIT: But this is really not the place to discuss it. Sorry dEhin.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Meera » 2014-10-27, 1:36

Ziad is a native Arabic speaker. His Hindi was so bad, even worse than a beginner, even his English was kind of weird.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Saim » 2014-10-27, 7:17

Dr. House wrote:Did you hear him not speaking it?


How can you hear something not happening? :lol:

I've heard a phone interview with Ziad and his English was superior to what he'd shown us in the video.


The one where he talked about the Mormon CIA wanting to kidnap him?

Also if you speak so many languages, nobody really expects you to know them at a C2 level. B2 is a fluency already.

The languages shown in Ziad's videos were: English, Arabic (MSA plus dialect), French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Russian,Polish, Hindi, Hebrew, Mandarin, Japanese and Vietnamese.


His Hindi was unintelligible.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Cesare M. » 2014-10-27, 19:03

Hey, just thought I would put my sort of input into this.

For those of you who don't know (I am sure many of you do, but there are still some users here who probably don't know so just thought I'd put a brief summary out there) I was an arrogant asshole back in the day, and especially acted a lot like Ziad Fazah. Claiming fluency in tons of languages when I could only speak a little in them. Thankfully I don't think I'm like that anymore (at least I hope not lol) and would think I have more humility and am more honest with people. Honesty is policy.

Ziad Fazah:

IMO he is the most competent in a few languages, but that is it, a few languages. Nothing more, nothing less. It irks me when there are still lots of people who call Ziad the greatest polyglot ever known to man. I have no doubt that Ziad may have knowledge in other languages besides his "best" ones (up to interpretation ofc), but no way in hell is he "fluent" in all of those 50 or however many languages he claims to speak.

Now I have in the past encountered professional translators and interpreters who are actually been proven "fluent" (I guess you can also call it "professionally competent") in about 10 languages, but they do not make a big hype about it, nor are they arrogant about it either. They are translators and interpreters and work with languages a lot, so to them it is normal and is nothing to boast about.

Now I do want to eventually become "fluent" in 10 languages, I admit, I do have that goal, but I will not be boasting or bragging about anything or be dishonest unlike Ziad and I always will accept corrections. I also know that learning 10 languages at once is never beneficial for me because I can easily lose track quickly, talking from experience ofc.

So I apologize if it seems like I am attacking Ziad, I have no intention to, I just thought I would share my honest views on him and the overall issue of people making drastic language claims. I appreciate people who speak a few languages very well more than people who claim to speak many languages well but speak them poorly.

eskandar wrote:I have not been very impressed with Moses's abilities in any of the languages I know. It may well be the case that he speaks excellent Mandarin, for example, or Japanese, or other languages I haven't studied -- I wouldn't know -- but as I recall his attempts in the languages I do know were riddled with errors, sometimes verging on incomprehensibility. I tend to be more impressed with people who speak other languages very well than those who can speak many languages poorly. In my own experience, I've been able to get to a similar level of communicative ability to what you often see in these polyglot Youtube videos after just a couple months (sometimes even less) of immersion, or dedicated study, but real skill takes much longer to develop.


Yeah, I have not been impressed either. I have no doubt he is "fluent" in Mandarin, Japanese, and some other Asian languages, but my biggest issue with Moses is that on his level up videos (which I mentioned to Dr. House when we chatted on Skype recently) he pretty much repeats the same thing in several other languages, which can get really boring after a while for me.

What I ask myself is why Moses doesn't ever prepare more vocabulary before he goes out.... I mean I would never go to a million Russian places i.e. and just say the same things over and over again. That will not help me improve at all, and Moses should have realized that by now with the languages he uses that he doesn't seem very competent in. Again it is great he is studying quite a few languages, but going to restaurants and grocery stores and repeating the same words over and over again millions of times is not an accomplishment, let alone an improvement of any sort.

Point: Be honest to others and make goals that are actually realistic. :)

On another note, dEHIN, best of luck with your language learning! :)

PS. If there is anything I wrote here that you thought sounded stupid or self contradictory, please forgive me as it was never my intention to sound that way.

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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Dr. House » 2014-10-28, 10:31

You're right, Cesare. I watched Moses' Russian introduction and he says the same stuff in all of his videos. (I'm married, but I don't have any children yet.) He uses his own method, which is no surprise to me, but I think his method needs some work first.

The FLR Level 1 teaches you very few sentences and are tailored for Moses himself (playing video games and go fishing...)

You actually need to buy Teach Yourself or Pimsleur to support this 40 dollar "bargain" which only teaches you how to say: "I'm learning it by myself." "I think language learning is rewarding." "I want to learn Spanish, because I'd like to visit Spain someday."

You can just extract the sentences and do some grunt work of translating it in any language you want.
If FLR provided me with thousands of sentences, I wouldn't mind, but there are like 40 sentences in total and many are just a transformation of the previous ones.

But I still think Moses is a good guy and so is Ziad. I don't understand why one would be hated and one adored and I'm not talking about the linguists here on UL. I'm talking the masses who hate Ziad, because of one video and his appearence in the Guinness Book, while praising a Moses' "level up" videos. It's not leveling up, it's being stuck in one place.

The purpose of talking to native speakers is to get a motivation boost, to get corrected or taught a new word, idiom etc. and to eval your level. If you meet a new speaker of Amharic everyday, you may amaze them by saying the same stuff till you drop, but it doesn't quite lift you higher in your language learning process. If praise is all you want, then go ahead do it Laoshu way...
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-01, 1:54

Cesare, thanks for the "best of luck" wishes (is that correct? would encouragement be a better word?).

Dr. House, no worries on discussing these things on my TAC. I enjoy reading the different points of view, especially since I've never been one to follow these public polyglots.

I do agree though about something Cesare said - that there are many out there in this world who know multiple languages to an advanced or fluent capacity, but who don't boast about it. They could be translators, linguists, or otherwise work in a language-related field. Or they could be language enthusiasts like use who happen to not be on UL and aren't known by any of us.

Personally I think the idea of publically wanting to share knowledge you have, or encourage others who are pursuing a similar goal - or walking a similar path - is admirable. But claiming to be something you're not, or actively seeking out popularity and attention, is in my opinion, a quality not to be desired.

Maybe I should do an update on my TAC soon huh!
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-01, 3:40

So I think it's time for an update. I've decided to use the list from before, after seeing Vijay do it. Even though I haven't been practicing/learning my languages in any sort of ordered way, I have been spending time on different languages: I've sometimes worked on a lesson of a resource I'm going through (Mango, Duo, Learn 6000 Words, FluentU), or had a language exchange via Skype, or attended a language exchange Meetup. And seeing Vijay use his list reminded me that I can use my list to figure out which languages to concentrate on a little bit more because I haven't done much (or anything) in them for a while now.

So here's my current list. I'm striking out a language that I've spent some time on in the past 2-4 weeks actively learning or practicing.


Now for some of them I've done a lot more study/practice/learning in. I've probably done the most in French and Portuguese, with Indonesian, Tagalog, and Japanese coming next. German and Spanish I've done a little bit in, and the same with the rest - Korean, Turkish, and Mandarin - but I think in terms of actual time, I've spent more time on German and Spanish.

Either way though I'm considering myself to have done all these languages for now. I think I want to focus on the 3 ancient languages next. For the living languages I haven't struck off, I have done a little bit of something since the beginning of September. I've either listened to music in the language, or practiced the little bit I know every so often. But I haven't read anything in Gothic, Hittite, or Latin since August!

I also might be adding a new language to my list :D. Vijay can probably guess which language it is, since he introduced me to it and it's one of the languages he's doing.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-01, 16:23

Since we only have 2 more months left in the TAC, I wonder if I should create specific goals for my languages. I guess when I started the TAC, I didn't read all the "rules" and therefore didn't create any goals. The goal for each language was the same: keep progressing. In my mind I applied that same goal every time I added a language.

I think for now I will keep with that general, somewhat vague goal. But perhaps for next year I will create specific goals. That means I'll have to do it for each language - ugh!

So as I'm writing this, I'm chatting on Skype with both a person from the Philippines and from Indonesia. And even though I'm a beginner in both languages, I've noticed that my brain manages to keep them separate. Or at least, to know which phrases/words to use for which context.

For example, a couple of times now, while talking to someone from Indonesia this has happened:

Other person: Hi, how are you?
Me: Saya baik. Dan kamu? (=I'm fine. And you?)

But for some reason I pause before writing dan kamu and think whether it's at ikaw (the Filipino way to say "and you") or dan kamu. Yet in both cases dan kamu felt right, and so I went with it. And this feeling happened before I consciously recalled which language uses which phrase. So somehow, despite my learning 2 Austronesian languages simultaneously, and despite my forgetting some words and sometimes mixing up words, I'm getting a feel for each language, slowly yet surely!
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-12, 19:24

Update time:

I think for the sake of continuing through my list, I can scratch off a few more languages. However, I haven't spent too much time on them - enough only to maybe learn one or two new things, but mostly to keep what I know active in my brain.



I probably could also scratch off Norwegian, but I'd like to do a bit more in it. I'm still going through some Gothic; all I did was review what I had done back in August. So I want to go through a little bit of new material. I might do the same with Hittite and Latin afterward.

The big news I have to report is that, with all the activity lately on the TAC forum about goals and 2015, I've been thinking about creating goals for my languages come next year and also for the rest of this year.

I decided to scale down the resources I have been juggling for my various languages, and closed down my Memrise, FluentU, and Duolingo accounts. I have also deactivated my ConversationExchange profile. For the rest of the year I want to focus solely on advancing in the Mango Languages lessons. Mango, which I've spoken about before, uses a conversation-based approach to learning. There is very little grammar taught and only when necessary - for example, there is an explanation of particles in Japanese, but for languages with verb conjugation, there is no breakdown of the forms. However the main reason I want to use Mango is that there seem to be an extensive number of lessons for most of the languages. For example, Tamil has 131 lessons in total! I'm not sure what level I would be at if I were to complete all those lessons. But surely there is a lot of good vocabulary that I could at least learn in 131 lessons. Plus, even if grammar isn't explicitly taught, my brain will pick up the forms and rules implicitly.

So with that said, I am going to try and finish up to lesson 4 (so all of lessons 1, 2, and 3) in all my languages. Well all 18 at least, since Mango doesn't have lessons for Gothic or Hittite (big surprise!). And then in Gothic and Hittite, I will try to complete up to the end of lesson 1 (of 10) in the LRC lessons I'm using.

Now the question is this: some of the languages I've already completed up to lesson 4, but should I start from the beginning just for the sake of it? I think I will. So as of right now, I am at the beginning of lesson 1 in each of the languages.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby vijayjohn » 2014-11-12, 23:27

Sure, go for it! Maybe it'll help boost your confidence, too. It can also just be fun to go through a few language lessons that you're already pretty familiar with, even if you're just going through them quickly. :) (Although personally, if I go through them too quickly (or skip over them :P), sometimes I find that I forgot or neglected some of the stuff taught in earlier chapters :lol:).

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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Meera » 2014-11-14, 0:23

Dehin, Just so you know Mango languages is great but for the non big languages there are A LOT of mistakes. The Hindi one is beyond awful, and uses mostly words people would make fun of you for. I tried the Pashto one just out of curiosity and I could barely understand it and most of the words were wrong. I think the French one is okay, but I'd be careful using the non big languages for it. I thought the Turkish one was okay though. The Arabic ones are weird, for example the Levantine one sounds more like MSA than Levantine.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-17, 2:47

Meera wrote:Dehin, Just so you know Mango languages is great but for the non big languages there are A LOT of mistakes. The Hindi one is beyond awful, and uses mostly words people would make fun of you for. I tried the Pashto one just out of curiosity and I could barely understand it and most of the words were wrong. I think the French one is okay, but I'd be careful using the non big languages for it. I thought the Turkish one was okay though. The Arabic ones are weird, for example the Levantine one sounds more like MSA than Levantine.

Thanks for letting me know Meera. I decided to focus on using Mango for a couple of reasons:

1) I felt that I wasn't getting anywhere substantial by juggling several resources for one language, but never really progressing past the first few lessons in each resource. So my closing my Duolingo, FluentU, and Memrise accounts, and deciding to work through Mango, was so that I could actually finish a resource.

2) I decided to use Mango for all my languages because it's the only resource that has all the languages I'm learning. I know I could just pick one (different) resource for each language, but I have this concept that if a resource is decent or good in teaching one language, then it must be good for the other languages it teaches. And, if I instead go searching for a different resource for another language, then I run the risk of that resource not being a good "teacher". Also, while for some of my languages I have other resources, I only have Mango for some languages - Turkish, Hindi, Swedish, Norwegian, Indonesian, Korean, and Polish. So if Mango is not good for Turkish or Hindi (or rather, at least for Hindi), I need to find a relatively cheap resource for those languages, or wait until I have the money to buy a good resource.

Meera, if you're reading this, how bad is Mango for Hindi? Could I use it to at least do the first few lessons and learn basic greetings, and stuff?
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-17, 3:08

Time for a quick update:



I'm still going through Gothic, even though I scratched it off my list in the last update. This is mainly because I had only read up to the end of the overview chapter (when I scratched it off my list). But this past week I started working on chapter 1, especially (finally!) getting to the alphabet and phonology/pronunciation section. I want to keep working through it a bit more so that the alphabet and phonology is cemented in my head.

One thing that is interesting about Gothic phonology is that it has the vowels from both cot and caught. Well at least the vowels as they are pronounced in variations of English that differentiate those two words. I think I do differentiate those words, but to me the difference is very small and hard to hear. A further complication is that Gothic has both a short and long version of the vowel from caught, but only a short version of the vowel from cot. When I pronounce those two words differently in English, I'm used to making cot short and caught long. Because I'm also learning the Hungarian alphabet, my brain was trying to figure out which sound is the Hungarian [a] as in vagy. For some reason I'm not sure if it's supposed to be like the vowel in English cot or caught (but short). I think if I can get these two sounds straight in my head, this will help in reproducing Gothic. Part of the problem is that with English and Hungarian, my brain remembers how to pronounce those vowel sounds from how I've heard native speakers pronounce those sounds. But of course that's not possible with Gothic, so I might have to use Wikipedia to hear recordings of each vowel.

Speaking of Hungarian, I connected with two Hungarian native speakers through ConversationExchange (before I deactivated my profile) and they both gave me a pdf copy of Hungarian Essential Grammar. So now I have a grammar resource I can use, as well as natives I can speak with to develop my speaking/listening/pronunciation skills.

My list is pretty much at the same status as the last update. I want to try and continue going through Gothic this week, as well as start Hungarian Essential Grammar, and possibly go through a Tamil grammar resource I have. I scratched off Tamil from my list but like both Gothic and Hungarian, I had done relatively little in each of them compared to the other languages when I scratched them off. I also will try to progress a little bit more through Hangeul (for Korean) and Katakana (for Japanese).

This does mean that Norwegian, Polish, Latin, Hindi, and Swedish will have to wait. Since I have the Mango goal, if I get through more of Gothic, Hungarian, Tamil (and possibly Korean and Japanese), I might start the list over and just focus on the Mango goal. Alternately I could still do the Mango goal and continue this iteration of the list: I would just do what's left on the list first, and then the other languages but consider those as part of the next iteration through the list.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Naihonn » 2014-11-17, 6:05

Hi there. I think hungarian "a" is quite different. And I don't know if I have ever heard something similar in another language. It's almost like saying "a" with a mouth shaped to say "o" in my language. Ehm, could you share your pdf copy of Hungarian Essential Grammar with me, please? :whistle: Well, I mean creating another copy of course. :D

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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-17, 22:08

Naihonn wrote:Hi there. I think hungarian "a" is quite different. And I don't know if I have ever heard something similar in another language. It's almost like saying "a" with a mouth shaped to say "o" in my language.

Hmm interesting. Yeah I know how to pronounce Hungarian "a" but I've never looked up the IPA symbol for it.

Ehm, could you share your pdf copy of Hungarian Essential Grammar with me, please? :whistle: Well, I mean creating another copy of course. :D

Done and done.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Meera » 2014-11-18, 0:33

dEhiN wrote:
Meera wrote:Dehin, Just so you know Mango languages is great but for the non big languages there are A LOT of mistakes. The Hindi one is beyond awful, and uses mostly words people would make fun of you for. I tried the Pashto one just out of curiosity and I could barely understand it and most of the words were wrong. I think the French one is okay, but I'd be careful using the non big languages for it. I thought the Turkish one was okay though. The Arabic ones are weird, for example the Levantine one sounds more like MSA than Levantine.

Thanks for letting me know Meera. I decided to focus on using Mango for a couple of reasons:

1) I felt that I wasn't getting anywhere substantial by juggling several resources for one language, but never really progressing past the first few lessons in each resource. So my closing my Duolingo, FluentU, and Memrise accounts, and deciding to work through Mango, was so that I could actually finish a resource.

2) I decided to use Mango for all my languages because it's the only resource that has all the languages I'm learning. I know I could just pick one (different) resource for each language, but I have this concept that if a resource is decent or good in teaching one language, then it must be good for the other languages it teaches. And, if I instead go searching for a different resource for another language, then I run the risk of that resource not being a good "teacher". Also, while for some of my languages I have other resources, I only have Mango for some languages - Turkish, Hindi, Swedish, Norwegian, Indonesian, Korean, and Polish. So if Mango is not good for Turkish or Hindi (or rather, at least for Hindi), I need to find a relatively cheap resource for those languages, or wait until I have the money to buy a good resource.

Meera, if you're reading this, how bad is Mango for Hindi? Could I use it to at least do the first few lessons and learn basic greetings, and stuff?


It's not terrible where you can't learn from it, but it isn't that great either. There are some mistakes and they use a lot words you'd probably be made fun of if you used them. But if you have nothing else for Hindi it could be useful although like I have said before I think the TY is the best thing for Hindi. If you wanted to use it for Hindi you could post things you aren't sure of here. The Urdu one is horrible they use naskh for it. Their culture insights are often misleading too. The French German and Spanish ones are all pretty good I think. Just the ones like Hindi, Urdu, Arabic and Pashto are really bad.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-11-21, 10:00

Meera wrote:It's not terrible where you can't learn from it, but it isn't that great either. There are some mistakes and they use a lot words you'd probably be made fun of if you used them. But if you have nothing else for Hindi it could be useful although like I have said before I think the TY is the best thing for Hindi. If you wanted to use it for Hindi you could post things you aren't sure of here. The Urdu one is horrible they use naskh for it. Their culture insights are often misleading too. The French German and Spanish ones are all pretty good I think. Just the ones like Hindi, Urdu, Arabic and Pashto are really bad.

Thanks for letting me know. Until I get TY Hindi, I will probably just use Mango. Some languages I'm starting to find/use grammar-based resources for, but with others I don't have any grammar resources.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Meera » 2014-11-22, 20:07

If you want a grammar for Hindi or Urdu, I'd suggest the Routledge ones. They are both excellent! But I would wait until you get into intermediate or high beginner before getting into them. :)
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby dEhiN » 2014-12-04, 19:36

Wow, I haven't been on here (UL) for almost 2 weeks! Quite a bit has happened for me in regard to my language studies and my approach. I'm going to get into more details later, but basically I've decided to focus on 4 languages as languages I want to learn to speak. And the rest of the languages I'm going to passively study. Ok well, actively study, but I'm going to study a little bit at a time like I would approach learning about some new technology - out of pure interest. I feel that this is more reflective of my goals, and will also hopefully help me keep things more manageable. Now with many starting their 2015 TACs, I think I might do the same. So expect an update later tonight, or in a day or two.
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Re: TAC 2014 - dEhiN

Postby Meera » 2014-12-06, 3:23

dEhiN wrote:Wow, I haven't been on here (UL) for almost 2 weeks! Quite a bit has happened for me in regard to my language studies and my approach. I'm going to get into more details later, but basically I've decided to focus on 4 languages as languages I want to learn to speak.


This is a really good idea!
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