Re: How do you learn using Duolingo

Hello,
@12: Genki is a book, one of the most popular for learning Japanese. It's about Mary, a university student, who was studying Japanese in Arizona, and has travelled to Japan for international study. The first lesson is about her arriwing to the city, asking a guy what's the time, and briefly introducing herself. Each lesson is made in this style, with an introducing dialog in Japanese, romaji and also recorded by native speakers, followed by grammar part, where new grammar is explained, next there is a new vocabulary page, with newly introduced words and their writings and each lesson is ended with bunch of excercises to practice everything you've learned.
I have liked the way in which grammar was explained, there was theory plus some examples, what was great, especially in cases I wasn't sure, whether particular phrase was recognized correctly.
Speaking about ocr, the book was very nicely readable. Genki is primarily a textbook, so no colouring pictures, no wild characters. Finereader recognized it almost perfectly, just from time to time I had to fix romaji, but especially Japanese characters survived the recognition quite well.
Recordings are provided either in form of CDs, or mp3 files downloadable from Genki website (the second choice is significantly cheaper).

There are two books in the series, if I remember right, Genki I and genki II, there is also a workbook for each of them and a book for teachers, which can be useful, if you want to check the correct answers.

Though you can start simply with the main book, I think it can entertain you for quite some time.

You can purchase Genki from various places, including Amazon for example, with either digital or physical recordings (CD).
If you can't afford it, either because of lack of money or simply because you don't have access to payment services in your country, as I said before, the book is very popular, so you shouldn't have problems finding a scanned version on the Internet.
it should be even legal for us, for example in digital libraries for blind people there are also books available for download without any costs, the only difference is that on such services they're downloadable just for people with visual impairment, whereas on public sites, everyone can get them.
But that is not our problem, but problem of the provider. The provider leaves responsibility to its users, which are anonymous, so noone can prove them anything.
So in the result, we have freely available learning materials, and blind people are happy.
The bonus thing of such sites is, that you can download the same book scanned on various scanners. For example, on one page, there are about 10 versions of Genki I, each with different size, so they're most likely scanned independently.
Thus, if your primary version is badly recognized on some place, you can simply get another scan and compare the recognition results. It can really help in some situations.

@13: when speaking about Spanish, I think you have many choices. Spanish blind community is perhaps one of the biggest blind communities online, they have their own online forums and discussion places, where you can prractice as much as you wish. I would be surprised, if they didn't have Teamtalk servers as well, if you want rather spoken communication.
There are languages with much more complicated communities. For example, if I manage to build my Chinese to usable state, I will need some places to chat too. But I don't know, if the Chinese community even exists in first place, or better said, whether it's accessible from outside of the great firewall of China.
So yeah, I will need to deal with that, when the time comes. But for Spanish, it should be much simpler.

Best regards

Rastislav

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