language learning online
November 7, 2007 10:21 AM   Subscribe

Mango is a new beta service offering free online language lessons. 11 languages available (each with 100 lessons). For English speakers there are lessons in French, German, Italian, Greek, Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Brazilian Portuguese and Pig Latin. For Polish and Spanish speakers, lessons in English.
posted by nickyskye (35 comments total) 86 users marked this as a favorite
 
What about Python? All I know so far is "Ssssss! Ssssssss!"
posted by Mister_A at 10:27 AM on November 7, 2007 [5 favorites]


How do they monetize this? Do they get you to memorize trademarks in the new language? J'ai conduit mon Citroën à McDonald's pour une Coke.
posted by jet_silver at 10:27 AM on November 7, 2007 [1 favorite]


Muy mango!

They don't call them "manguages". This restraint impresses me.
posted by rokusan at 10:31 AM on November 7, 2007 [4 favorites]


Pig Latin? Does Pig Latin really require lessons to learn?
posted by amro at 10:31 AM on November 7, 2007


It must, every time I speak it to my pigs they look all confused.
posted by Floydd at 10:33 AM on November 7, 2007 [2 favorites]


Mango beta is an online enterprise-level language learning system freely available to everyone. Learn at your own pace with a suite of features that make language learning more engaging and fun.


Enterprise Level, huh.

Anyway, I always thought it would be a good idea to pair language learners up from various countries so they could practice with each other. With the internet and video conferencing, what could be easier?
posted by delmoi at 10:36 AM on November 7, 2007


How does this compare to livemocha? It sounds like essentially the same thing...
posted by nzero at 10:40 AM on November 7, 2007 [3 favorites]


I sort of skipped to the end on a couple languages I know - and it didn't take you that far at all.

I still recommend the FSI Language courses to everyone. They're also free. And they're intensive and advanced, and provided in the form of reading materials and MP3s.
posted by vacapinta at 10:44 AM on November 7, 2007 [17 favorites]


Mango beta is an online enterprise-level language learning system freely available to everyone. Mango is like a drug. You must have more and more and more of the Mango until there is no Mango left. Not even for Mango!Such is Mango.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:51 AM on November 7, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ambrosia, dude, you just made me lose the game.

Such is Mango, indeed.
posted by oddman at 11:06 AM on November 7, 2007


Send Password (Option 3)
For user's that signed up for Mango after October 16th, 2007


Like one of them English user's?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:12 AM on November 7, 2007


My company provides Rosetta Stone courses online as a perk, and I have to say I think they go a lot farther than this offering. Still, it's nice to supplement the main program, or to have a free alternative in case my MeFi habits get me fired.
posted by bashos_frog at 11:31 AM on November 7, 2007


But will it teach me the language of love? It's international, doncha know.
posted by quin at 11:31 AM on November 7, 2007


I would love to learn Spanish from Mango.
posted by SassHat at 11:42 AM on November 7, 2007


My company provides Rosetta Stone courses online as a perk, and I have to say I think they go a lot farther than this offering.

So you're saying the language course that costs hundreds of dollars is better than the one available for free? Huh. That's weird.
posted by Greg Nog at 11:58 AM on November 7, 2007 [3 favorites]


yeah ambrosia dude.. quit being so funny all the time, it gets annoying.

A friend of mine married a girl from Venezuela last year and she is really struggling with her English. I'll forward this to him and see if it helps.
posted by vronsky at 12:02 PM on November 7, 2007


Is the Rosetta Stone course considered good? I've seen the ads, but wondered if it was worth the price.
posted by vronsky at 12:03 PM on November 7, 2007


I went to the link provided by vacapinta for the FSI Language Courses, and I got:

"web server is ok" as the webpage.

Am I operating the Internet incorrectly?
posted by facetious at 12:47 PM on November 7, 2007


Same here, facetious. No go on Safari, Firefox or Opera. Do the FSI Language Courses hate Macs, perchance?
posted by maryh at 12:56 PM on November 7, 2007


Is the Rosetta Stone course considered good? I've seen the ads, but wondered if it was worth the price.

"We developed Dynamic Immersion™, a method that combines advanced interactive technology with native speakers and a rich visual environment...

I've scene richer visual environments done in hypercard. Rosetta Stone consists of native speakers describing something that matches a scene in 1 of 4 really bad stock photo images. You click the one you think that matches.

I recall playing same game when I was 3. "Which one is the doggy? No...doggie don't have wheels...which one...yeah!"
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 12:57 PM on November 7, 2007


Do the FSI Language Courses hate Macs, perchance?

I was able to jump to some of the language sections using links from Google

The resource cannot be found.
Description: HTTP 404.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 1:02 PM on November 7, 2007


And thanks nickyskye, I've been looking for a free Spanish program to work with until I find something more complete. This seems pretty good although I noticed the Spanish course is lacking a lot of the extra information on pronoun use and idiom that the French course includes. Hopefully they'll be adding more as they fine tune the site. Nice find!
posted by maryh at 1:03 PM on November 7, 2007


facetious, I get the same message, and after looking them up on Google, the links I find 404 or give similar messages.

I just lost 40 minutes to Mango though playing around with the Japanese lessons. I think I'd have to review each lesson a lot to get the vocabulary down, but it's fun to do, definitely.
posted by ugf at 1:42 PM on November 7, 2007


The Mango group should hire a copywriter or proofreader for their profiles too - I definitely see superfluous apostrophes in those as well. Still, it's a beta, and meant to shake those things out of the code / copy.
posted by ugf at 1:45 PM on November 7, 2007


Can you know the mighty ocean? Can you lasso a star from the sky? Can you say to a rainbow... 'Hey, stop being a rainbow for a second'? No! Such is Mango!
posted by phaedon at 3:07 PM on November 7, 2007


Not bad at all. I'm studying for my 3 キュ in Japanese next month, and I need all the help I can get. Too bad they haven't implemented kanji, though.
posted by zardoz at 3:57 PM on November 7, 2007


What about Python? All I know so far is "Ssssss! Ssssssss!"

No, no, silly ... Ssssss! Ssssssss! is parseltongue.

In Python that would be

>>> Ssssss! Ssssssss!
posted by Zinger at 4:24 PM on November 7, 2007 [2 favorites]


The FSI site has gone down in the past -- try again in a day or two.
posted by gubo at 6:27 PM on November 7, 2007


My friend works at a Chinese learning website that is pretty good. They have free mp3 downloads.

Chinesepod
posted by afu at 9:48 PM on November 7, 2007


Just wanted to recommend BBC's excellent Ma France for anyone looking at brushing up their French grammar.
posted by the cydonian at 8:46 AM on November 8, 2007 [1 favorite]


Do they sneak advertising into your lessons?
"Good afternoon, madam. I would like to purchase a cold, refreshing Coca-Cola."
"One dollar, please."
"Only one dollar? That is an excellent price for a cold, refreshing Coca-Cola."
posted by pracowity at 9:36 AM on November 8, 2007


Rosetta Stone is supposed to be very good if you finish the entire course. I found it pretty tedious when I used it to learn Portuguese, but I didn't finish because my subscription ended and I didn't want to pay again.
Granted, I was accustomed to learning a language like I did with Spanish in school and college, so mindlessly clicking one of the four (yes, bad stock) pictures was pretty boring. I did learn, but probably not anymore than I did just by reading Portuguese materials (I speak Spanish so I can read Portuguese, just not speak it).

Like vacapinta, I also skipped forward to the end of the Spanish lessons (lesson 103!) and it doesn't really go that far at all.
posted by fructose at 10:00 AM on November 8, 2007


Found this a long time ago, bookmarked it, forgot about it. Thanks for the refresh, nickyskye!
posted by Reggie Digest at 10:07 PM on November 9, 2007


J'ai conduit mon Citroën à McDonald's pour une Coke.

Maybe it's the Canadian in me, but I think il n'y a pas de 's en Français.
posted by Reggie Digest at 10:12 PM on November 9, 2007


The FSI site mentioned above is back up.
posted by gubo at 12:26 PM on November 13, 2007


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