Chinese Study Motivation

Hey kids, if you study really hard, one day you might be able to make sense of this ludicrous story:

Story made entirely of 'shi'

I came across it at OMG Soy Sauce: This is Why Chinese is so Hard.

Geek System has more info about it here: Chinese Riddle in Which Every Syllable Is Pronounced /Shi/.

Comments (4) | Trackback

Tekagi Recognize

Today I had to install Ubuntu (yay) so I can use it for some site testing – important to test things in all operating systems, not just Windows / OS X!

While I was waiting for some development tools to finish installing, I browsed the software available in the repository…

Which by the way is extremely easy to use – I’m amazed at how far Ubuntu has come since I last used it – it’s only been about a year and half since I went back to using OS X almost exclusively.

So anyway, I was browsing through the software and I came across this little application – Tegaki. It’s a Chinese / Japanese handwriting recognition tool. I’ve only played with it, but what I’ve seen so far is pretty cool. I don’t know how I would use it though, I’m perfectly comfortable using SCIM / OS X’s Pinyin input systems… Whatever, it works well, even with my terrible writing-chinese-with-a-mouse skills. It recognized what I meant most of the time, but after successfully writing something it took me a little while to figure out how to get the characters from the program into whatever program I was trying to write Chinese in. Turns out that I’m a moron – one just ensures the textarea in question is selected, alt+tabs into Tegaki, write, then click the ‘enter’ button. The characters will be dropped into the text field. Magic.

Cool idea, works really well, but I’m sticking with the traditional pinyin based methods. Writing characters by hand, with a mouse just doesn’t do it for me.

What could work is writing with my Bamboo Fun tablet – I’ll try that as soon as I get some free time, and report back. I think it could work MUCH better, and have the added effect of forcing me to actually remember the characters, instead of just Pinyin.

No comments | Trackback

Dinner, Indecent Proposals Beijing Style

Turning a corner we saw five policemen on motorbikes slowly cruise past. We passed many more bars, and were propositioned many more times.

No comments | Trackback

Confucius Institute, Great Wall of China

oday we were woken up at six. Breakfast wasn’t until six-thirty, so I uploaded photos. For breakfast I had tasteless buns and spinach. Spinach was best.

After boarding the bus I realised I had forgotten my dictionary, so I ran back to get it. The bus was still there when I got back.

Our first stop was the Hanban and Confucius headquarters. When we arrived, we were told that they weren’t ready, so we drove into town to have a look around. When we arrived in town, we were told that they were ready, so we turned around and drove back. While driving we saw people folding up A4 advertising material and shoving it into the gap between the doorhandle and door of modern cars.

No comments | Trackback

(Review): New Chinese Practical Reader Vol. 1 – 新实用汉语课本:一

…chanting variations of “bā bá bǎ bà” repeatedly. This was necessary – repetition is the only way to learn tones correctly.

No comments | Trackback