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What language to learn?

by Skomatth
Tags: language, learn
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Ouabache
#37
Jun9-05, 11:46 PM
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Quote Quote by neurocomp2003
btw which version of chinese were you learning M or C?
I am guessing you are referring to Mardarin and Cantonese. There are actually many dialects of Chinese. Each quite different sounding (mutually unintelligible) The site I linked, describes 14 out of many.
neurocomp2003
#38
Jun9-05, 11:59 PM
P: 1,373
yes i know...but those two are the most spoken outside of china...they are considered by westerners the two official ones ...i could name like 10 of the top of my head but like you said htey are dialects...each province prolly has its own dialect someone once told me 50+

Its funny when my mom speaks hunan hwa...but annoying when my dad speaks ha ga

mathwonk try mandarin.
Ouabache
#39
Jun10-05, 12:34 AM
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Quote Quote by mathwonk
I love music and have always liked to sing, but my colleagues said I was congenitally flat as a madrigalian.
I am not surprised you love music. There is a close connection between music and maths. (just look at the notation for music, time vs frequency plot). There are a lot of musicians who have an affinity for maths.

I also enjoy music, but also lucky to inherit perfect pitch. As you found out, good pitch is important in speaking tonal languages.
Poop-Loops
#40
Jun10-05, 01:09 AM
P: 863
Quote Quote by mathwonk
i myself have had great difficulty learning to say even a couple of phrases in chinese without seriously insulting someone, although I grew up around and learned from many chienese speaking friends who were from malaysia and china. japanese on the other hand was no problem at all with virtually no practice; when i visited tokyo and kyoto everyone understood me immediately and i got around fine with only a few minutes study and a book.

that may have no relevance to what it means to learn to read.
That could be because more foreigners visit Japan, maybe? That way they are used to their language being butchered (hey, they deserve it for creating Katakana ;)) I don't know. Is China as much of a tourist attraction as Japan? I know plenty nerds go to Japan for the technology/video games. Or hell, maybe you just learned how to pronounce Japanese without beingn stuck on English. :)

PL
Cod
#41
Jun10-05, 02:17 PM
P: 308
I'm recently started tech school at DLI (Defense Language Institute; one of the best language schools in the world from what I hear) in Monterey, CA where the US Air Force has me learning "PUSHTO". Not many people know much about the language other than it is spoken in Afghanistan and Pakistan. With that being said, the military and federal governments are really interested in those that can speak any of the Middle Eastern languages. So you may want to look into something along the lines of Arabic, Hebrew, etc..

Hope this helps in the least bit. And I'll gladly answer any questions y'all have about DLI in Monterey, CA.
mathwonk
#42
Jun10-05, 10:26 PM
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I was always considered talented at imitating sounds, and had little trouble imitating german, japanese, italian, spanish, amharic, hindu, french (hard), bulgarian, russian (hard), etc.

but i could do little with norwegian, and chinese was very tough too. so maybe those languages are harder for english speakers, i.e. further from english.
Lisa!
#43
Jun10-05, 10:52 PM
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I think you should decide what you like to do first and then choose a language.
1.French:it's an useful language esp. for romantic people.lots of beautiful poems are French.
2.German:if you want to study philosophy and read Faust.
3.Spanish:if you want to travel to latin america where there are lots of interesting people and also lots of interesting books are spanish.(this is my favorite language and ?I want to learn it )
I have no idea about other languages but I think I'll never study Chinese or Japanese coz they seem to be so difficult.
I heard lots of ancient sciense books are written in Arabic so it could be useful too.(I have no idea about it)
neurocomp2003
#44
Jun10-05, 11:23 PM
P: 1,373
here is the chinese alphabet .represented by english sounds.
all english consonants are read as the sound not the letter...b -> b not bee.

[tier 1A:14]
b, p, m, f,
d, t, n, l,
g, k , h,
j, ch, sh
[tier 1B:6]
j(r), ch(r), sh(r), r {2nd set of hardest sounds}
tz, ts s {as in ritz and gets }

[tier 2: 3 vowels]
ee OR y, oo OR w, ??yu,yue ??{prolly thee hardest letter to learn}

[tier 3: 12 "." implies short sound, "_"implies long sound]
.a , .o , .e , y.e
_i , _a , ow/au/ou, _o {always pronouced}
an/en, in , .ung, _ong

[tier 4: 1]
er

37 total

[Phase 2]
remember each sound has 5 tones...try to great 5 ways of saying ban.
"b"".a"
[Phase 3]
Learning to join sounds from different tiers..not all combinations are possible.

[phase 4]
Memorizing words.

easy as one two three.
Poop-Loops
#45
Jun11-05, 01:37 AM
P: 863
I think, just as with anything in life, you find what you like the most and then do it. You'll find uses for it later. If you start learning something you really have no interest in, but think you'll need, then you won't get very far anyway. I'd rather know how to speak a rare language fluently than barely be able to utter a sentence in a popular one.

Like French? Go for it. Like Spanish? Go for it. It doesn't really matter.

PL
scholar
#46
Jun11-05, 02:53 AM
P: n/a
Spanish will probably one of the most useful, especially if you are in the USA. Soon there will be more Spanish speakers in the USA than in Spain.
amb123
#47
Jun15-05, 05:31 PM
P: 98
I have a copy of the Pimsleur Mandarin Chinese on CD that i'm hoping to learn with my boyfriend this summer. I believe it is the most spoken language, and i'm hoping that i'll find people to talk to in Mandarin in Berkeley. After that i'd like to learn French (because i'm mainly French in genes) and Spanish (because it is spoken all around me.) I wonder if I should pursue a language in college, I don't have any free electives left, and language isn't required, but I should take advantage of the opportunity I suppose, even if it puts me back a little.

I would love to be a Linguist, but I feel I have a language block that has kept me from attempting to learn different languages... I hope I can overcome the barrier soon. :)

-A
Pseudo Statistic
#48
Jun15-05, 07:31 PM
P: 390
C is an OK language, but I prefer Pike.
RadiationX
#49
Jun15-05, 08:33 PM
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P: 256
Quote Quote by cronxeh
why learn obsolete languages and other inferior ways of things

study math and physics instead. those obsolete philosophical ideas of ancient Greece - who cares? Its not relevant today - wont be relevant tomorrow or hundred years from now. No matter what anyone tells you - its history, and only those who have no better knowledge of understanding of the Universe around them will study ancient texts of Greek philosophers
You have made some great comments in the past, but you obviously did not think this one out. Western Society is built upon ancient Greco-Roman ideas. Have you never heard of democracy?
Gza
#50
Jun15-05, 10:10 PM
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P: 525
You have made some great comments in the past, but you obviously did not think this one out. Western Society is built upon ancient Greco-Roman ideas. Have you never heard of democracy?
Knowing the average education level of members on these forums i'm pretty sure that he has a pretty good understanding of democracy. I'd be willing to bet that he learned of the concept in english; since many books on the subject are published in english. So i guess my question to you would be: Have you never heard of translators?
RadiationX
#51
Jun15-05, 10:38 PM
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P: 256
Quote Quote by Gza
Knowing the average education level of members on these forums i'm pretty sure that he has a pretty good understanding of democracy. I'd be willing to bet that he learned of the concept in english; since many books on the subject are published in english. So i guess my question to you would be: Have you never heard of translators?

You missed the point i was trying to make. Classical languages are the well from which modern ideas sprang. I'm quite sure that reading Plato or Socrates, or for that matter any Classical work in the tounge that it was written in is a different experience than reading it in a translated form. What about learning a language just for the culture of it?


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