Similar impressions here.
I’m a software architect by background and do software product strategy for a living now.
Although a daily user of LingQ for now several years, I do have limited outside-in perspective. That said, I’m confident I can read between the lines quite a bit.
I’d surmise that LingQ used to have a technical problem and now they have a business problem. The list of technical things to-do has gotten out of hand, there’s just simply too many things to do. Thus, at this point, it’s not a matter of numerous technical decisions but one of a few business decisions.
In this context, it probably can’t go unsaid that Steve is 78. He needs annuity income, not a money pit.
As far as I know, there isn’t anything else quite like LingQ. I personally immediately became a fan. I recall that 25 years ago, for Japanese, I coded an assisted reader myself to be able to click on any word in browser to quick get the dictionary definition. That said though, if I look ahead to the future, even the near term, the use of generative AI at the core of the architecture of an open comprehensible input content platform is what’s necessary.
Not only is LingQ now technologically fragile, it’s also ready to be overcome by what’s next, generationally. And what’s next isn’t just technical and generative AI, isn’t also a more robust framework of enabled incentives and money flows for second language content creators.
Right now, there’s a wedge for some of the best and the brightest, in LingQ and in the LingQ user community along with others savvy in generative AI, language acquisition, and two-sided platforms, to envision a new ground-up platform. Likely some of those individuals come across this post.
LingQ’s successor needs launched.
I don’t say any of this to be unsupportive. I’m LingQ’s biggest fan but with an open transparency toward prospects and potential, at least as I see them.
LingQ, you have the right of first refusal to be the world’s best and dominant language acquisition platform. The global 21st century needs what you’ve envisioned.
Simply though, the world will move ahead with or without you at the helm, or on the boat, or not.