I’m using LingQ to remember my German, but I live in Taiwan and am also studying Chinese. LingQ, however, isn’t much use to me as it seems to be mostly (entirely?) simplified characters and Chinese language.
As someone who lives in Taiwan, the simplified characters are of little use to me (Taiwanese do use them occasionally when they get lazy), but there doesn’t seem to be a way to filter the stories/lessons in traditional characters from those in simplified characters. Am I missing something?
Even if I take the simplified texts and convert them to traditional, it’s still not the same. The language in Taiwan and China vary slightly. Words/diction/vocabulary differ occasionally. Grammar changes slightly. Pronunciations are different on many characters. The culture, although very similar, differs and learning culture (being interested in it) is rather important to learning a language.
So my suggestions would be:
- Offer a filter for traditional/simplified texts and lessons.
- Offer “Chinese - Simplified” and “Chinese - Traditional” as two separate lessons. This should allow more people to specialize in one or the other. At some point, you may even have someone offer to teach Taiwanese, Hakka, or other languages.
I think it would be nice to be able to know whether the lesson has traditional or simplified script. If/when Cantonese is offereced, I definitely want trad.
Now, Taiwan vs. mainland China is more like a dialect/accent issue, right? Any language has differences in pronunciation, intonation, usage, grammar and so on. Although it might be interesting to know whether a speaker is from this or that region, has this or that accent, I’m not entirely sure that it’s useful for a beginner.
People learn English from all kinds of sources; US, UK, Ireland, Australia…
People submitting content can tell us what they want as the “accents”. The differences between Taiwanese Mandarin and the different Mainland versions are not that great and can be covered by “accents”.
For the time being you have to convert the characters.
There is nothing preventing people from submitting texts in traditional characters. They should indicate this in the description. It is likely that such content will have a Taiwanese accent and should be searchable by accent if they are labeled that way.
The whole issue of additional languages has been discussed at length. It is coming, but we cannot say when, at which time Cantonese and Taiwanese or whatever people want can be added.
I wouldnt worry too much. I had a friend come to Taiwan recently who studied Chinese in Beijing and is pretty fluent in Chinese. He said it took a week or so to adjust in Taiwan and adjust his accent a little so people didnt laugh at him.
I also live in Taiwan and don’t find Lingq to inhibit my study in any way and most material sounds close enough to the Taiwan accent. Not sure what grammar differences you are reffering to.
Yeah, from the little Taiwanese Mandarin I have heard, I have been able to figure out which sounds are different.
I think many suffer from the classic obsession with accents… as soon as someone speaks a language just a tiny bit different from their teacher/audio course/people they know, it’s almost as if it’s another language… “how can I ever hope to make myself understood here???”.
To MPenguin: If somebody speaks with a Taipei accent and not a Beijing one (or the other way around), so what? Adjustment is one of the keys to successful comprehension (and production).