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Lingo Player - Free video player with pop-up translations

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There's a 2014 MIT research paper that demonstrated the advantage of "smart subtitles" (pop-up translations) for Chinese language acquisition. I never found the MIT-created software, but I did found something similar: The free, open source Lingo Player.


It serves a similar purpose as LAMP (Lingual Media Player), mentioned in this thread, but Lingo Player has less features: It's only focused on being a video player with pop-up translation for always-on subtitles. The good thing is that, while LAMP seems to have stopped development years ago, Lingo Player is fairly new, so it might have a better future. The big disadvantage is that it's Windows-only.


You do need to have VLC installed, as Lingo Player uses it to be able to decode the video. Get Lingo Player from here: http://oaprograms.github.io/lingo-player/


Once you open it, it will ask your native language and the language you're learning, so it can show appropriate translations. You load your Chinese video and your Chinese SRT file and you're good to go.


Using it is dead simple:

-Pause either by hovering the mouse over the subtitle area or pressing the spacebar.

-Quickly jump to next/previous subtitle line with the left and right arrows.

-Hovering over any word shows a popup translation of the whole sentence. I haven't found a way to translate just a single word. I guess this is best for more advanced students. For the rest of us, LAMP is better because you can freely select the portion to be translated.


It does have a "saved words" function, but the lack of documentation makes it... Not so useful.


If someone finds the MIT-developed player, he's my hero.



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Update: One of the creators of the MIT smart subtitles sent me the link to the files:



It was a web service. If anyone has a server, you can get it working. Unfortunately MIT is no longer hosting it.

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Digital Ocean provides hosting plans from $5 a month.


(Disclaimer, that's my affiliate link, I use them and think they're great).

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I am trying out the lingo app and Chinese characters are appearing as boxes. I know the program is based on VLC but VLC can display Chinese characters correctly. Any idea if there is something else I should try? I would really love to be able to use this program!

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Hi. Sorry for the late reply. It might be a problem with the encoding of the srt file. Try opening with Subtitle Edit (free) and re-saving with a different name as UTF-8 encoding. If this also fails, you can select the encoding when you open a new file.

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