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doumeizhen

Best of Chinese Study Tools, Studying Chinese Online and Off

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Czech Cara

Here is my bit, sorry for possible repetition:

http://www.yellowbridge.com/language/flashcards.html flashcards and more

http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/mand/ listening resources sorted by topics, ideal for Aussies

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mandarin_slang only good things should be said in Chinese, but sometimes you just cannot help...:evil:

http://www.hanyuwang.com/en/default.asp this helped a lot once

http://www.rfa.org/mandarin/guangboku/ radio Free Asia, I bet you won`t find it in China, Error 404:)

http://www.wellesley.edu/Chinese/Chinese_Fables/title/title_page.html stories and fables, intermediate stuff

http://www.mandarintools.com/email.html corrupted email corrector, seems really working

http://www.oneaday.org/index.html an idiom a day keeps doctors away

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OneEye
Any thoughts on a single, entry-level, introduction to Chinese pronunciation (and probably pinyin at the same time), preferably with sound files.

http://fsi-language-courses.com/Chinese.aspx

I found the "Pronunciation and Romanization" tapes and text very helpful. I'm not far enough through the rest of the course to comment, but it seems good, although maybe a bit outdated. It's supposed to be used in conjunction with Module 1: Orientation (tapes 1&2 are prerequisites for Unit 1, etc.), but I'm sure it could be used alone just fine.

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flameproof

This complete beginners to intermediate course is well worth mentioning:

http://www.ctcfl.ox.ac.uk/Chinese/lessons.htm

Are there more people obsessed with statistics? Anyway, for your reference, that course, in the audio script uses a total of 4030 characters, and 579 unique ones. All characters sorted by frequency are attached.

ctcfl.pdf

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simonlaing

Hi Flameproof,

I looked at that oxford U link. The idea was quite good. Though I think you can see how it seems to have been written by chinese people with it's lack of Pinyin. Espicially for beginner students asking them to try to read Chinese immediately off the bat with just a vocabulary list seems quite difficult. I think putting some pinyin or per say English to the the dialogues would help tremendously .

Plus though the multiple choice is good, reading the typed in Chinese seemed to have issues espicially since the answer was formatted with spaced. Plus in the beginning having Comprehension questions could give more of a feeling of accomplishment over having the correct grammar. But overall , it seems quite quality and probably a good supplementary course.

It seems strange that most software out there treats learning characters and reading as an after thought, though it is one of the most important parts. I think this part goes to the other extreme and hardly teaches pinyin or speaking which is very important aswell.

I was looking forward to more advanced questions also but hey I guess if you're above intermediate you've learned that reading newspapers and blogs are interesting in themselves.

Have fun,

Simon:)

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flameproof
It seems strange that most software out there treats learning characters and reading as an after thought, though it is one of the most important parts. I think this part goes to the other extreme and hardly teaches pinyin or speaking which is very important aswell.

That can be a very first impression. But on another page you have also English and Pinyin:

http://www.ctcfl.ox.ac.uk/Chinese/lessons/1/speaking.htm

It's really the very best I have seen.....

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simonlaing

Hi Flameproof,

I agree that it is definitely a quality site with some good content on it. But I can also see how it reflects a Chinese speaker, or Academic linguistic style. (Perhaps that it why it is labeled a supplementary part of it.)

It seems strange that they have a grammar section of testing Chinese, but not comprehension, vocabulary, and or listening. But in that it does have a section to writing is great. So few sites have it and I think writing and character learning is essential to learning Chinese.

Are you guys looking for help developing it? I am in Leeds at the moment which isn't far from Oxford really. If you want help, I and a classmate or two would like to take part in it. I think adding some game like drills such as those on yellowbridge.com

http://www.yellowbridge.com/language/chinese-memory.html

Or the Tone tester would be of use.

Also for the intermediate students it could be good to provide exercises for them. (things like HSK practice questions, or short paragraphs with questions on the paragraphs.) There are lots of options. It is still a quality site and I am supprised I haven't found it before now.

Anyway,

have fun,

Simon:)

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roddy

Just split off a 'I haven't tried it but maybe it's useful' post - could we keep this for suggestions of the best tools, not stuff you haven't tried yet.

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onebir

How about hanzicommand? Save china from the marauding hanzi by blowing them up with their pinyin? :P

I've got a working draft, but need to 'refactor' it & change it a bit to make it usable. I'm planning to make the hanzi attack in waves of 6-8 (ample 'distractor' pinyin, but not so many it takes ages to scroll through all the choices), with each wave repeating any you miss. I also want to get it recognising the ZDT flashcard list output (& eventually SuperMemo, but that uses XML which I know nothing about...)

I'll try and post a beta version here in the next few weeks. But it's my first computer program over about 100 lines of code, so it could take longer... It'll need python (2.5 if poss), pygame, and the simhei ttf font. If anyone knows of other widely available, free chinese fonts, please let me know.

Also any view on how the game should function? At the moment, toneless pinyin destroy the hanzi. I'm planning to make each hanzi play it's sound when it gets destroyed. I think that would subconciously reinforce the tone. But I guess some people would prefer to include the tones :s

936_thumb.attach

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doumeizhen

Onebir!

YAY! Maybe games will save my tones...

Also, I just updated the links for Chinese television and Radio, under "Listening". Worth checking out.

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onebir
Has anyone read Stadler's Education (in China) Guide?

A consumer's choice bible to studying in China...

Unless I'm mistaken, it's mainly about international schools (ie for kids)...

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Long Pan

From this chengyu list quoted in the first post, find attached in the proper format to be directly imported in your Pleco:

  1. the complete list in txt and PDB
  2. from this list, the 190 chengyu that have a definition in the Oxford Pleco dictionary (I tested it)

I guess ABC should get it all

chengyu 250.zip

chengyu oxford.zip

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jlau

This list is very useful but seems to be missing two of the most popular free online resources (at least as far as Google ranking is concerned).

One is the YellowBridge Chinese English Dictionary. While it shares some of the common features and sources used by the other free dictionary, this one offers a number of unique features. One is the logical decomposition of words into its component sub-words and characters. For example, if you were to look up 计算机, you would not only find that it translates into 'computer' but also that 计算 means to calculate, while 机 is a machine. This feature is especially useful for the longer words and technical phrases. Another unique feature is that the character portion of the dictionary not only shows the etymological decomposition of characters but allows to search any character by identifying its structure and component. This feature is very useful when one needs to identify a character but do not know the pronunciation. This feature replaces the traditional tedious aproach of guessing the character's radical and counting the number of strokes.

Another popular feature are the YellowBridge Flashcards, which has a good coverage of the most popular textbooks used at the college level, including both Integrated Chinese and New Practical Chinese Reader.

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sunyata

One more tool that's not well-promoted is Key...it's a bit on the pricey side though. It uses the ABC dictionary as well.

http://www.cjkware.com/

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stephanhodges

One thing they could do to promote their product is to not bash the "free" products with scare tactics. Point #2 from their "why their product is better" page is :

2) You should uninstall any so-called "Chinese Internet viewer" and associated programs you might have on your computer, to avoid potential interferences and conflicts. Such "Internet viewers" are being offered as a lure for free download in many locations on the Internet; while they seem to work superficially, they are "hacks" using non-standard techniques that are not supported by Windows, and they may wreak havoc with your system. You should only use the fonts MS Song and MingLiU (see above under (1)) in connection with your browser to view CJK web pages.

I tried this program before buying wenlin a couple years ago, and I thought at that time that wenlin was superior. I don't know what a current comparison would bring, since Wenlin hasn't updated their software in a while, that might be a point towards these fellows.

I'm not affiliated with either product.

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atitarev
...By the way, if anyone knows the exact answer to the question for registering on to the Wakan forum "how to say cat in Chinese or Japanese":--

--have tried: xiaomao, mao (pinyin and hanzi; caps n lowercase)...

I also like Wakan and I was able to get an answer to my question I had.

Should you perhaps enter it in Chinese? 猫 or 小猫

In Japanese it's the same character for "cat" pronounced "neko"

neko - ねこ - 猫

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SGC_Rob

Maybe the free SpeakGoodChinese program for training tone pronunciation is worth a try?

You can find it at: http://www.speakgoodchinese.org/

(disclosure, I am part of the SpeakGoodChinese team so I am strongly biased)

It is still largely untested, but as it is Free Software (GPL), I don't think there is much risk in trying it.

There is a thread about it on Chinese-forums.com under:

Chinese-forums.com > Learning Chinese > Speaking and Listening > speakgoodchinese

This also discusses problems some people seem to have under XP.

Rob

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renzhe

Hi,

I'd like to point out the flashcard databases for the popular (open source) flashcard programs Mnemosyne and KVocTrain (aka Parley).

They include:

All characters from HSK1 - HSK4

All words from HSK1 - HSK2

Most common 2000 characters, sorted by frequency and split into groups of 500s.

Hopefully they can help some beginner and intermediate learners.

The mnemosyne database can be found at http://sourceforge.net/project/showfiles.php?group_id=159201 . Mnemosyne is a spaced repetition program similar to SuperMemo, but open source.

The KVTML database can be found at http://edu.kde.org/contrib/kvtml.php . It can be used with the Parley or KVocTrain programs, which are a part of the KDE project (currently Unix/Mac, but soon for Windows as well).

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