好久不見！Yeah, it’s a been a while hasn’t it? Chinese is still on the down-low for me. I’m lucky enough to still get a handful of emails each month with people creating amazing projects and apps in the Chinese learning space. It’s incredible to see it grow, and I’m a little sad that I’m not so actively involved as I was before. Perhaps this will change with two new projects that caught my attention recently.
First is Outlier Linguistics’ Character Dictionary add-on for Pleco. They had a successful Kickstarter campaign, which I backed. I was very skeptical at first regarding their goals and in-depth research, but then I tried their demo app as well as read this interview on Sinosplice, I was convinced and pleasantly surprised by their passion and expertise. The 说文解字 (Shuowen Jiezi) mistake example blew my mind.
In a way this was the kind of knowledge I was I had for HanziCraft and my thesis research. Perhaps I could get in contact with them to help open-source some of the dictionary data, or license some of it for HanziCraft? Can’t wait to try out their dictionary though.
Next up is Ninchanese. They also have a Kickstarter, which is live now & super close to their goal. It reminds of a DuoLingo-type system with a focus on Chinese-only, which is great, since I think Chinese has got it’s own unique set of challenges when comes to online learning.
I really love their dedication to style as well. Even though it might not necessarily contribute directly to your language learning, it definitely adds to the motivation and enjoyment.
They also have vocabulary challenges at Ninchallenge, which was nice to refresh my vocab memory.
It’ll be interesting to see where these projects go. For now, it makes me super happy to see people build more things. That’s why I’d happily back them, even if they fail on their promises or don’t deliver quite as well, we need to promote experimentation in the space. They might very well become or are already amazing new resources to add to your learning arsenal.