812 reputation
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bio website hackingchinese.com
location Sweden
age
visits member for 2 years, 7 months
seen Oct 22 at 6:25

I'm a language student and teacher who has quite a lot of opinions on how to learn languages more efficiently. Since I think there is a severe lack of people discussing how to learn (rather than just what to learn), I'm running a website called Hacking Chinese, welcome!


Jan
15
comment How to translate: 人是铁,饭是钢,一顿不吃烦得慌. What is the logic?
Google isn't a waterproof source of language usage, but if you get 8 hits on one phrase and 2 190 000 on another phrase, you can be quite sure the first one wrong (or at least extremely uncommon).
Dec
8
comment What does the sound “app” mean in Chinese?
Perhaps a bad example then (but would you really say L-E-D display, for instance?), but I still think the general tendency is there (of not making words of acronyms in Chinese, I mean).
Dec
8
awarded  Popular Question
Dec
7
comment What does the sound “app” mean in Chinese?
This is part of a larger trend, too, people say L-E-D for LED as well, for instance. My guess is that these are more easily accepted as new words (even though they are original abbreviations) in English because they don't violate morphological rules as much as they do in Chinese. Also, I suspect that single-syllable foreign words pronounced in the middle of a Chinese sentence will be much harder to understand than a three-syllable abbreviation, which is obviously not a Chinese word.
Nov
25
comment Asking a cafe/restaurant if they have Wi-Fi *and* electricity for using a device
Really?I Know lots of places that offer WiFi but not power.
Nov
24
comment Asking a cafe/restaurant if they have Wi-Fi *and* electricity for using a device
This doesn't answer the question of power supply, though.
Nov
17
comment Is pinyin `sh` of 什 the same as SHampoo
Still, if given a list of various common pronunciation problems, I would put x/sh distinction quite far down the list. Most students have way more serious problems than that!
Nov
17
comment Is pinyin `sh` of 什 the same as SHampoo
Although they are in complementary distribution, I would be very careful with merging them. If you don't merge, you give the listener TWO clues to what you're saying (the initial and the final), if you merge theme, you only give the listener ONE. So, even if xi and shi are obviously different both in initial and final, if you pronounce the initial the same and then botch the final a bit, that would be very bad indeed.
Oct
26
comment how to translate cyberbullying into Chinese?
From Wikipedia (zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E7%BD%91%E4%B8%8A%E6%AC%BA%E5%87%8C): 網上欺凌(英语:Cyberbullying),又稱網上霸凌、網路霸凌、網絡欺凌、網絡暴力等
Oct
19
comment Chinese idiom for “tilt at windmills” or “fighting against windmills”
I agree that this answer seems to lack the absurd part. If I'm not mistaken, in the Chinese idiom, the goal can be reasonable and praiseworthy, it's just way beyond someone's reach. In the English idiom, however, the entire endeavour is misguided, it's not mainly about if you can win against the windmills or not, it's about the fact that you're fighting windmills.
Oct
19
comment Teaching Pinyin and Characters together vs Teaching Pinyin then Characters
They are also very useful for understanding Chinese. I feel that way too much time is spent trying to make sure that students can say and write words they have actually never seen or heard. If understanding is also a goal, fixed patterns make more sense, at least in the beginning.
Oct
18
comment Teaching Pinyin and Characters together vs Teaching Pinyin then Characters
This comparison is quite flawed, I think. The distance between written and spoken English is so much shorter than between written and spoken Chinese.
Oct
16
comment Does a similar system to a pangram exist for handwriting practice
This depends on the situation, but if we're dealing with second language learners, I'm not sure using the classic is a good idea, because it contains many characters that aren't very useful today (昃, 羌, 柰, etc.). If we're going to practice handwriting, I suggest writing something the learner can actually understand and which is useful beyond handwriting itself. So, copying anything in modern Chinese would be much better, in my opinion.
Oct
4
accepted Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
Oct
3
comment Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
Yes, perhaps the above tool is the best there is at the moment (and it's actually quite good). The difference between the system ought to be because in Chinese, word length is (almost) unrelated to difficulty (most words are disyllabic anyway), which is not the case in English. Still, I haven't done any research into this and I don't know how well Flesch-Kinkaid actually works (see comment to the original question).
Oct
2
comment Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
For this to be useful, it would be necessary to figure out what distributions at different levels look like. How many words beyond HSK X does an intermediate text have? What's considered difficult for students at level Y and so on. Still a good start, though.
Oct
2
answered Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
Oct
2
comment Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
Not really, because it only gives number of characters and unique characters per sentence. This is a small indication of difficulty, but not if analysed per sentence as is the case here. However, the site you linked to also links to another site which looks more promising, posting separate answer about it!
Oct
2
comment Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
Perhaps I should have chosen a better example. There are at least quite a lot of text analysis tools available for English and I mostly chose one that looked like what I had used before.
Oct
1
revised Are there any readability measurement tools for Chinese?
edited title