Busuu & LiveMocha: review of pros and cons

busuu LiveMocha

Over the last weeks, I have been attempting to learn German through various different interfaces. Some have been a huge improvement to how I learned previously, some can be helpful in particular ways, and some just aren’t for me at all. This post shares a little of my experience using both Busuu and LiveMocha. The […]

Over the last weeks, I have been attempting to learn German through various different interfaces. Some have been a huge improvement to how I learned previously, some can be helpful in particular ways, and some just aren’t for me at all. This post shares a little of my experience using both Busuu and LiveMocha. The […]

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Honest & detailed review of the LingQ web-based learning system

lingq

Update: LingQ is a paid system, and as I say in this review the only part I found to be truly unique was the reading interface, which is still $120/year for the basic version. Luckily there is now an open source and totally free alternative that fixes many problems I discuss in this post, especially […]

Update: LingQ is a paid system, and as I say in this review the only part I found to be truly unique was the reading interface, which is still $120/year for the basic version. Luckily there is now an open source and totally free alternative that fixes many problems I discuss in this post, especially […]

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Language hacking links

hacker

One month ago I started the Language Hacking League (LHL) e-mail list, and I am really pleased with how it has evolved! Every Monday I send out an e-mail with a language hacking tip, links to the Internet’s best free resources for language learning and then I end by asking the league a question. E-mails […]

One month ago I started the Language Hacking League (LHL) e-mail list, and I am really pleased with how it has evolved! Every Monday I send out an e-mail with a language hacking tip, links to the Internet’s best free resources for language learning and then I end by asking the league a question. E-mails […]

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Using facebook lists for multicultural holiday wishes and practising languages in status updates

fb

I was about to update my facebook status to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, but this creates a certain problem; most of my facebook friends are not native English speakers and some don’t celebrate Christmas. While they may have enough to understand the simple phrase “Merry Christmas”, it’s forcing a language in their feed that […]

I was about to update my facebook status to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, but this creates a certain problem; most of my facebook friends are not native English speakers and some don’t celebrate Christmas. While they may have enough to understand the simple phrase “Merry Christmas”, it’s forcing a language in their feed that […]

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How to make your computer multilingual

pink_mouse

I’ve always said that total immersion and avoiding English are the key to learning a language quickly. However, even when living in the country, watching TV, socialising and doing everything else in the local language, you may still be exposed to too much English on your computer. And if you can’t travel yet to practise […]

I’ve always said that total immersion and avoiding English are the key to learning a language quickly. However, even when living in the country, watching TV, socialising and doing everything else in the local language, you may still be exposed to too much English on your computer. And if you can’t travel yet to practise […]

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Best free online dictionaries for translators and linguists

dict

Sorry traditionalists, but printed dictionaries are on the way out! They are either too small to contain enough entries or too large for those of us that travel, as well as being too expensive. In the time it takes me to go get a big fat dictionary, and flick through the pages for a particular […]

Sorry traditionalists, but printed dictionaries are on the way out! They are either too small to contain enough entries or too large for those of us that travel, as well as being too expensive. In the time it takes me to go get a big fat dictionary, and flick through the pages for a particular […]

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Couchsurfing: How to practise with a native without even needing to leave your home

1565029080_80e285d50c_b

Edit: This post was so well appreciated by people that I’ve rewritten it and added it to lots of other unconventional tips, in the Language Hacking Guide. I recently shared my most important decision ever that started me on the path to becoming a polyglot, but it lead to a lot of questions that some […]

Edit: This post was so well appreciated by people that I’ve rewritten it and added it to lots of other unconventional tips, in the Language Hacking Guide. I recently shared my most important decision ever that started me on the path to becoming a polyglot, but it lead to a lot of questions that some […]

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How your computer and the Internet can correct your grammar and spelling (for free)

google

In an ideal world, you would have a native beside you every time you spoke or wrote something, so that they could help and correct you. This is not possible for many of us! Luckily, thanks to modern technology and the Internet, you can have your grammar and spelling corrected immediately and automatically, in any […]

In an ideal world, you would have a native beside you every time you spoke or wrote something, so that they could help and correct you. This is not possible for many of us! Luckily, thanks to modern technology and the Internet, you can have your grammar and spelling corrected immediately and automatically, in any […]

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Imagination: your key to enjoying memorizing hundreds of words quickly

kayak

Do you feel like you your memory capacity for learning lots of new words is holding you back? I certainly felt that way… When I was given a list of foreign words (German in my case) to learn the meaning of in school, it was always unclear how to actually do this. Nobody ever taught […]

Do you feel like you your memory capacity for learning lots of new words is holding you back? I certainly felt that way… When I was given a list of foreign words (German in my case) to learn the meaning of in school, it was always unclear how to actually do this. Nobody ever taught […]

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Travel phrasebooks: a serious language learner’s best first book to study

lpbooks

Please note: this article was written in June 2009. Those who know me, are aware that I can actually take a lot with me on cheap flights, but I still have to decide what is and what isn’t coming with me for my next 6 months on the road! (Czech Republic, then likely somewhere in […]

Please note: this article was written in June 2009. Those who know me, are aware that I can actually take a lot with me on cheap flights, but I still have to decide what is and what isn’t coming with me for my next 6 months on the road! (Czech Republic, then likely somewhere in […]

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The best online dictionary for learning any language: Google Image!

searching for the image of a term

There is a huge problem with almost every single dictionary you will come across. The translation is always wrong! Yep. Demand your money back! When you look up a word such as “voiture” from French, your dictionary may suggest “car”. But “voiture” doesn’t mean “car”. A “voiture” is “a wheeled motor vehicle used for transporting […]

There is a huge problem with almost every single dictionary you will come across. The translation is always wrong! Yep. Demand your money back! When you look up a word such as “voiture” from French, your dictionary may suggest “car”. But “voiture” doesn’t mean “car”. A “voiture” is “a wheeled motor vehicle used for transporting […]

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