One of the great features of Assimil is that it uses small (and often funny) texts to “spoon feed” the beginner. The drawback to this is that humour is a subjective thing - what seems witty or droll to one person may be boring and dry to the next guy.
I have been experimenting with the new exchange-features at LingQ, and in my opinion this takes the concept of Assimil to a whole new level!
I have had some little texts translated into Russian, and they are so delightfully wacky that I could listen to them 1000 times over! (The latest one features Christophe Clugston and a chainsaw!! :-D)
Could this prove to be a kind of individually targeted Assimil?
Well Lingq is constatly evolving , so basically yes it’s better than Assimil . I would reccomend Assimil before coming here at Lingq just to have some knowledge of the target language .
What may be an advantage regarding Assimil is that it is in book form ( except if you downloaded it in pdf format ) and this may prove to be better considering the fact that if you are in a mood to learn I think it’s easier to pick up a copy of an Assimil course than to turn on you computer and wait until you can get to use Lingq . In fact I’ve been thinking what it will be like if Lingq were to start publishing the courses they offer in book format and the recordings as DVD bundles .
I would like to see the Exchange feature used more and more. Individual learners can have texts translated and recorded and then put into our library. I used this feature to get the basic phrase “patterns” translated and recorded for Romanian. This series therefore exists for English and Romanian, and I believe we also produced for Portuguese and Dutch. It would be great to have for other languages. This is no fun to listen to, but a good place to refresh basic patterns.
At the same time funny or interesting content can be share across different languages.
As for Assimil, the content in Russian was great, in Korean not so. I usually prefer Teach Yourself as a starter (the older version) because it is cheaper, and provides a glossary instead of the full text translations. I prefer the former and don’t like the latter. But to each his/her own.
We are looking at ways to make it easier for beginner at LingQs.
I liked assimil to start in russian, since is similar to linq, but it gives you detailed explanations of grammar at some points.
Once you are done with assimil and know the basic grammar things, i consider Lingq to be better, because the content is unlimited, and you can choose everyday to read and listen about anything what you want and also you can save the words.
so my opinion is, for beginners: Assimil, for intermediate and advanced: better lingq.
The thing is, Josu, if you use the exchange function here at LingQ, you can create your own personal and individual Assimil-type texts.
I have been writing some little texts in German and having them translated into Russian. Ich bin davon total begeistert!
(They feature the kind of stuff which would never get past the in-house lawyers at Assimil - really scurrilous things about real people in the online polyglot community! Wonderful! :-D)
I have played with Assimil and it is certainly good, but I don’t think it is best for beginners. It gets really difficult really quickly. LingQ is better, I think, because it makes it so much easier to read and understand stuff.
I think LingQ has always been better than Assimil. Assimil is a nice little collection of texts with some useful explanations and audio, but it is very limited and more difficult to use than LingQ.
I like Assimil because I know some guy was paid a lot of money to cleverly write the dialogues so that there is spaced repetition built in allowing for the systimatic assimilation of all important vocabulary. I think lingq is an ideal follow up to Assimil since it gets the student from the low intermediate level to fluency through the facilitation of mass imput.
Apropos spaced repetition, many of the texts that I have had translated and recorded so far feature Christophe Clugston in one guise or another! :-
(A psychologist would probably say that I’m developing an unhealthy obsession with the b*****d…)
@force - hehe, yes, that’s better spelling, wink.
Actually, I just came on to say, Nah, you don’t have an unhealthy obsession - you just like having a bit of fun on here! (as do I). All work and no play is boring…
2:30 am…our movie just finished! (Dead man walking - yeh, I know, boring so I came on here. Ha!) Yay, can sleep in since it’s Saturday. Will dream about boiled eggs spitting the dummy. Not.
Uhhhh… Susan Sarandon… god that was a terrible movie