https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Weekly Incubator Update: Tracking Progress from August 23rd to August 30th

Six in the club 90
And now the "German for Turkish" team joins the 90s club. It is time for the courses to start hatching. We should soon be getting a few courses in our hands.

Retrograde movement
For some reason, two courses - XYZ from Chinese show negative progress. Lacking any communication from their side, it is hard to know what exactly happened. Perhaps they just reset their trees... I have omitted these two courses for calculating the average progress for this week.

Thought for the week
Go Russian!

PHASE 1 Progress: Total 26 courses

Spanish for German - 99% | 99% | 99% | 99% (+0)

German for French - 86% | 95% | 98% | 99% (+1)

Russian for English - 97% | 97% | 97% | 98% (+1)

German for Portuguese - 91% | 93% | 95% | 96% (+1)

English for Thai  - 90% | 90% | 91% | 91% (+0)

German for Turkish - 85% | 87% | 89% | 90% (+1)

Hungarian for English - 80% | 80% | 80% | 80% (+0) ^

Spanish for Russian - 70% | 72% | 74% | 76% (+2)

French for Italian - 70% | 70% | 71% | 72% (+1)

German for Italian - 70% | 70% | 71% | 71% (+0)

Polish for English - 55% | 56% | 57% | 66% (+9) *

Spanish for Italian - 62% | 62% | 62% | 62% (+0)

Vietnamese for English - 54% | 54% | 54% | 54% (+0)

Swedish for Russian - 49% | 50% | 50% | 52% (+2)

Catalan for Spanish - 15% | 24% | 37% | 46% (+9) *

Hebrew for English - 39% | 41% | 43% | 45% (+2)

Romanian for English - 39% | 39% | 39% | 40% (+1)

Greek for English - 34% | 33% | 33% | 33% (+0)

Spanish for Chinese - 54% | 54% | 54% | 26% (-28) #

Hindi for English - 18% | 18% | 18% | 20% (+2) ^

Klingon for English - 14% | 15% | 15% | 16% (+1)

Portuguese for French - (New) 14% | 16% (+2)

Italian for Portuguese - (New) 10% | 12% (+2)

Yiddish for English - 8% | 8% | 8% | 8% (+0)

Czech for English - 6% | 7% | 8% | 8% (+0) ^

French for Chinese - 40% | 40% | 40% | 5% (-35) #

Mean - 0.83% | 1.21% | 2.04% | 1.42% (-0.62)
Median - 1% | 0% | 1% | 1% (+0)

* This week's Leader Extraordinaire!
^ The Hungarian, Hindi, & Czech teams' progress is as per their own calculation
# Omitted from the calculation of mean

Progress Visualized:

Here's what the contributing teams have said during the last week:

Elladus from Team Korean wrote yesterday:

Course Update 15/08/29

Course Statistics:

Reports per 100 users: 4.07 (2015/8/22: ~4.47)

Total # of reports: ~1576 (2015/8/22: ~3500)

Please send us your careful reports

Elladus from Team Korean added yesterday:

과정 업데이트 15/08/29

과정 통계:

사용자 신고율: 유저 100명당 4.07개 (2015/8/22: ~4.47개)

신고 총계: ~1576개 (2015/8/22: ~3500개)

신고는 신중하게 하시길 바랍니다

Arnauti from Team SV<-RU wrote 19 hours ago:

Работа продолжается - полпути пройдено!

Спешим поделиться хорошими новостями со всеми, кто ждёт выхода курса “Шведский для русскоговорящих” и поддерживает нашу команду! Сегодня новостей у нас три:

  1. Мы наконец-то преодолели второй рубеж
  2. Курс достиг 50% планки
  3. У нас появился новый сотрудник — мы очень рады включить в нашу команду toOliya

Мы с новыми силами продолжаем трудиться и, конечно, будем держать вас в курсе событий!

Summary in English: we've reached the second checkpoint, the course is 50% ready, and we have a new and highly qualified contributor – welcome toOliya!

/Шведская команда

Shady_arc from Team Russian wrote 14 hours ago:

A few final pieces

Hello again!

I would like to thank everyone for their patience. The course having spent more than a year in development, its release into Beta is drawing near at last. We can all but see the finishing line :). The course is likely to be finished in the coming weeks.

We have already chosen the Text-to-Speech solution that our course is going to use; Duolingo team is working on integrating its API. In the meantime, we have taken the liberty of restructuring the opening section of the tree. The edits are almost finished, so now, I am inclined to believe, it should better reflect how Russian is taught these days. It has become more fun, too, because a number of popular words appear eariler than they used to.

Here is how our tree looks now:

It has certainly put on some weight!

Another update is to follow in a few days.

d.batta from Team IT<-FR wrote 9 hours ago:

Mise à jour du 30 août 2015

Bonjour à tous ! La sortie de la phase bêta est de plus en plus proche: pour la première fois, la moyenne hebdomadaire des rapports est au-dessous de 3 (2,92) ! À bientôt,
Davide

xavi_fr from Team CA<-ES wrote 4 hours ago:

A l'estiu tota cuca viu! (En verano todo bicho vive)

En verano estamos más vivos que nunca!!

Estamos trabajando mucho para que todos podáis disfrutar del curso lo antes posible! Me gustaría dar las gracias a @asfarer por el gran trabajo que está realizando. Juntos, el equipo a logrado un avance muy significativo las últimas semanas. Gracias a todos!

Dicho esto, celebrar que estamos llegando al último checkpoint y a la mitad del curso, en términos de palabras completadas (progreso 969/2130). Mi previsión es que el ritmo en las últimas fases de la creación del curso será más lento, dado que necesitaremos ayuda de voluntarios de diferentes regiones para verificar que las soluciones se adaptan a todos los gustos.

Ens veiem en breus! (Nos vemos pronto)

jitengore from Team Hindi wrote just now:

Week 12: 20% complete, beta launch 10-Dec-2015

Yes, we are moving.

TL;DR Solid progress this week as well. Six courses in the 90s.

p.s. I am still not getting ANY email notifications from Duolingo - not when someone comments here, not when someone posts on my stream, not one when someone pings me inside the incubator either. I have checked to make sure that I didn't turn off such setting by accident.
So, if you have been expecting to hear from me, please bear with me until I get the email notifications sorted out.

The next update is expected on Sunday, 6th of September at 3:00 pm UTC. (It might come out a little earlier since I will be traveling to India).

Previous Update 16-Aug to 23-Aug

Last updates from the recent months: 2015: Aug, Jul, Jun, May, Apr, Mar, Feb, Jan.

August 30, 2015

90 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/JordanOsr

I'm sure I'm not alone in this sentiment, but I wanted to thank you for taking the time to collate all the data and language progress each week and releasing it to the people. It definitely provides me with something I look forward to waking up to on a Monday morning :)

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Garrett2015

Hear, hear! Although it's a Sunday morning wake up for me. :-)

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Vedun

Sunday afternoon here. It's no fun waiting eagerly all day long for the WIU :/

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

You're most welcome! I too look forward to publishing this data each week! :)

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

You do a wonderful job, it's much appreciated!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Vedun

I'm a bit surprised that Duo still hasn't made these updates official.

And omg, Russian is so close. I would start counting down the remaining skills if I could in real time.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/panagiotis_ts

Will the Russian tree be longer than the French one?! :o

Also, why did the Spanish and French courses for Chinese speakers collapse?

POLISH FOR ENGLISH SPEAKERS +9%!!! GO GO GO TEAM POLISH!!!!!!!! :D

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

The Russian tree is somewhat shorter. There are several good reasons for that:

  • it is easier to teach nouns than verbs, and the temptation is too high if you decide to add more words
  • the course is rather long already
  • more stuff gets thrown away as you progress. Duolingo is not well suited to giving language at a more advanced level. The farther you go, adding more and more words, the harder it is to justify why you should add these exact words, and throw out the other ones, which are no less popular. The reason being, of course, that translating stuff to English makes certain words "inconvenient", even if there is nothing wrong with them.
August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ptoro

This is good to know! Just curious, have you and your team included the top 1,000 most frequently used Russian words? Or is it mostly whatever words best teach a given lesson?

I heard word frequency lists are often used in language courses so new speakers will understand most of the words they come across. This enables them to understand the gist of what someone is saying the foreign language.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

We used frequency lists as a reference but—no, we didn't include the first 1000. Frequency lists are quite hard to deal with, because they are just so very dependent on what kind of material you use to compile them.

OK, let's imagine some godly being analyzes ALL the language heard and read by ALL native speakers in the last 50 years. Even this "true" frequency list will tend to be rather difficult to learn from, as all the auxiliary words come first. The English TOP-50 list has no nouns, for example. It won't even depend much on what kind of corpus you use — a transcript of 1000 hours of converstations in a prison, a database of movie subtitles or a large database of scientific papers. Languages objectively use function words and words with vague meanings ("you", "do", "mother", "person", "here") more often.

So, various frequency lists have not been our only source, nor have they been the primary one. I did pay attention to words that form TOP-200, though, and also was watching the popular words that evaded our grasp for too long (if there was no apparent reason why we should not include them).

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Ontalor

Hey, I just wanted to point out, is that bonus skill supposed to say "Manimals?"

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/PatrickRansom

Yes. It's all trivia about Vladimir Putin.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/remoonline

That looked like Manners to me. Alphabet1 had me looking for Alphabet2 through the rest of the tree.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

maybe Manymals. Or just Animals 2 :). I am not yet sure what would be the shortest way to call a skill that has names of various common animals, too many to include in your basic course. We all like our tigers, salmon, sharks, magpies, starlings and wildebeasts, but 5-10 animals are enough for EVERY user. The rest whould be left to those who are willing to learn more.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/DeanG6

Animals 2 sounds good. Thanks for all your work on this course. I look forward to learning Russian, but please don't feel rushed to complete it by any specific date. Take your time and get it all "just right". We can wait. ;-)

September 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/FrankKool

I was thinking the same thing. :P

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/JordanOsr

So excited for Russian!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/otsogutxi

The Russian tree is so big :O Imagine trying to keep it fully gold! 76 skills in total (excluding the bonus skills)!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tamuna10

Haha yeah, and it still can't teach you the whole Russian xD That's really a fun thing.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/otsogutxi

I'm still going to try it, even though it looks daunting:)

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/killerbng

NO matter how daunting, it will be VERY rewarding in the end! Bring it on :)

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/-..--..-.-.-.-

DO IT JUST DO IT

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Albrechtion

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jacob_sangi

Don't be discouraged by the size. In fact, that seems about the right size to set a learning pattern for russian learners. You have to understand that Russian is considered by some one of the hardest languages for English speakers to learn. Well, besides Mandarin and Arabic being harder, Russian has its tricky situations. Some words don't translate into English all the way, and even speaking is difficult (first-hand account).

My advice would be to go slow through that tree. Unless of you have a 1-2 years worth of experience learning the language, then you can probably cruise through the first part of the tree.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

Come on, it is an Indo-European language. Russian has a history of Gothic, German, Dutch, French and English borrowings (Persian and Turkic, too, unfortunately) and is not all that different structurally. It is not amongst the easiest but could not be the hardest.

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexinNotTurkey

Unfortunately?! Persian is just as Indo-European as Russian and there is a long history of exchanging words between the Turkic and Slavic word (with a lot more words being taken from Russian to Turkic languages) ;)

If those borrowings are unfortunate, so are the borrowings from Gothic, German, Dutch, French and English.

September 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Shady_arc

Borrowing words from or through Persian is unfortunate for foreign learners that speak English and/or German.

September 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Sarmady

Which one is unfortunate? The occupation of Iranian territories by Russia (which resulted in those words being borrowed into/from Persian) or the borrowed words themselves.

Despite the above fact, you seem to be more bitter to Persian...! (referring to the fact that you consider influence of Persian language i.e. one of the oldest languages on other languages unfortunate).

September 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AlexinNotTurkey

Aaaah...got it. That very well may be true ;)

September 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Albrechtion

It's not one of the hardest. It's considered medium difficulty for English speakers.

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Xefjord

I think it is like the upper end of medium? But I would agree that I do not think it is classified as hardest. http://www.effectivelanguagelearning.com/language-guide/language-difficulty There is an interesting article

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/DeanG6

I'm wondering what would be a reasonable amount of time to complete the Russian tree, compared to the time it takes for the romance languages (which seems to be about 6 months).

I was planning to try to complete the Russian tree in 6 months, and then study Arabic. But now I'm wondering if maybe I should take a year for Russian before moving on to Arabic. I only have experience with Spanish, Italian and Portuguese (mostly Spanish).

September 4, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/cherub721

The English from Russian tree has only 56! I finished it this summer. I guess I still have a lot of Russian to learn, haha.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/NerysGhemor

Only reason it isn't freaking me out is that I do have some prior Russian experience...hopefully some of the skills will not require me to learn all of the vocab or grammar for the first time. ;-)

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

I am really interested/slightly scared to find out how many skills I'll be able to skip... how much have I forgotten? Eep!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/machaelajean

So excited for Polish!! At this rate maybe we'll even have it by the new year. You guys are fantastic.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Nemesis_NaR

And it's not in the official Incubator page of the course, but it looks like that the Spanish for German speakers is going into beta in the next week. Here's a link for German-speaking folks:

https://www.duolingo.com/comment/10241202

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/galletarodeanda

Yeah, we really think that it will work out next week. We are actually ready, so there should be no big problem despite the fact that we still have our counting problem with the 99 percent (in reality we are at 100 percent). Staff says it shouldn't be a problem. We just will go for it and hope that the counting issue goes away all by itself. I hope the incubator won't explode because of this :D. Wish us luck haha.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/fr224

Don't worry, I'm pretty sure Turkish went into beta at 99%.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/killerbng

Ohhh so close for the RU for ENG speakers!!!

Thanks to all involved with the course, and also thank you to those involved with making these weekly update post!!!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/chilvence

Yay Polish moved.

Come on lads, I want to be able to understand what guys at work are saying to each other!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Albrechtion

Yay Russian!

Also, go Polish! Great work this week!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/-..--..-.-.-.-

How'd you get those gifs?

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Albrechtion

Find a gif (also works with pictures) online, make sure you click "View Image" so it's the only thing on the screen. Then you format it like this:

![](Insert URL Here)

So, for example, if you were using a gif with the URL http://media.giphy.com/media/MZSAkdZgRs23e/giphy.gif, you would type this:

![](http://media.giphy.com/media/MZSAkdZgRs23e/giphy.gif)

And it would look like this:

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/yoink
  • 1524

Wow, the Russian tree looks huge, no wonder it took so long! I bet it's going to be awesome. I can't wait! :D

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer

According to alexinIreland, Duo removed the UI strings from the percentage calculation of the Chinese courses.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/dinnernugget

Я много хочу русский язык в Дуолинго! Counting down the days til Russian.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/fr224

Excited to see that the Russian tree is so long, and that they have bonus skills! I don't think any other incubator course has had bonus skills!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/volumniax

Happy travelling!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Thanks, volumniax!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/KaiBark

That Russian tree looks soooo long! I love it and cannot wait to get going on it!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/LeIouch

Very impressed with the speedy progress of the Catalan team!! :)

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/doktorkampi

We need to slow down, no one is chasing us (I think).

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/LeIouch

Keep up the speed coz we wanna see FR=>Catalan and EN=>Catalan too!! :P

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/doktorkampi

Me too!

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Indeed!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BrookeLorren

The Russian tree looks great! Can't wait to see it in beta.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

Russian is so close! Cheering team Russian on few those last few skills. Very excited!

Also German for French speakers! Cannot wait :D 6 courses in the 90s :D

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Michal_90

There is also new post from Czech team with information about their progress.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Yes, but unfortunately that came in too late to be included this week... I will add it next week.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/aphcanaderp

Glad to see the Romanian course made progress :D

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/fr224

It's back down to 39% on the course page. At least they're working on it.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr.Quizzical

The drop from the Spanish and French for Chinese speakers is probably due to the stock market crash.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/PonyDesu

You've missed the update from the Danish team.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Thanks for the notice. I do not look for updates for Phase 3 courses, unless I have been notified. (Due to the aforementioned glitch, if someone did notify, I must have missed it). Will add it next week...

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/PonyDesu

Yea, They did. Thanks for working hard to provide us news from the Incubator!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/coolazice

Hindi is moving again! Woohoo!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jitengore

Thanks for the cheer!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Anna_Elsa_J.

Gratki dla polskiej i katalońskiej drużyny! :D Congrats for Polish and Catalan teams! :D

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/doktorkampi

And by Catan, you meant Catalan, right? Or should we welcome the Settlers of Catan Team?

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/doktorkampi

Dziękuję bardzo! Moltes gràcies! Thanks a lot!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Anna_Elsa_J.

Catalan - mała wpadka z klawiaturą XD Dzięx ;) Catalan - little mistake with keyboard XD Thanks ;)

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/cdub4language

I'm never going to finish the Russian tree 0.o

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jacob_sangi

Have faith. It's not like the languages similar to English where you can slide by the course because it has its similarities, you have to know the grammar . Also, you have to be able to understand tat Russian words change spelling depending on your adjective and pronoun.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/cdub4language

Thanks for the encouragement!! I guess instead of saying "never," I should say "It will probably be 3-4 years before I finish." It took me two years to finish French, one to finish Spanish, and I don't know about German since I've started and stopped but I'd say a year of frequent efforts (and I'm still not finished - 15 skills left). Esperanto, I finished in three months, but I already knew the language pretty well and the tree is shorter. After finishing German I'll do Irish, which I find to be a much more difficult language than Spanish, so I'll be surprised if I finish it by the end of 2016. Russian, I'd say it will take me over a year, if not a full two... Hopefully I'll have sped up my learning speed by then!! Thanks again for your encouragement - I'll get there, even if it takes me a year to start and two years to finish the Russian course :-D

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/jacob_sangi

No problem. Then again, you also need to understand some people chose to take the Ukrainian course because they wanted to familiarise themselves with the so called "Cyrillic Alphabet", even though the Russian and Ukrainian alphabet are different in a way.

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/d.batta

French for Italian finally overtaking German for Italian :3

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Tamuna10

Haha :D Good job!

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ReidHT

Could this be it? Is Romanian finally progressing, even if only 1 per cent? THEN GO ROMANIAN! Also, Catalan is still going strong... it's amazing!

September 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Balaur

Maybe I missed an update or a discussion, but I'd really like to know what's happening with those courses for Chinese speakers. Did they suddenly add a bunch of new empty skills to the trees? I know a lot of people who could benefit from these courses, but I'm reluctant to mention them to anyone until there's some hope that they could be finished within a year. I'd really like to spread the joy of language-learning through Duolingo in Taiwan, where people mostly just learn English as a required foreign language (seldom well enough to benefit from the courses for English speakers), but rarely any other language.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Levi
  • 1940

I am also looking forward to the Chinese course/tree.
2015.08.31

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/shalee73

Do I spy I skill called "Told Ya" on the English to Russian tree? xD

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/wyqtor

I wonder what's up with Hungarian. There's no progress reported by the team, but the course is at 96% in the Incubator, which means that SOMETHING is happening.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BroderUlf

This page says 80%, not 96%. They started with an empty tree, so the numbers on the incubator page are wrong. The numbers here are the team's own estimate.

They posted an update a few weeks ago, saying they were regrouping. Hopefully they've found some new contributors and will start moving again soon.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/widle

Yes, the number in the incubator is not real, but the fact that it is changing should mean that they are working on it. Let's hope it's true.

August 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/BroderUlf

I actually hadn't noticed that their incubator number was moving. According to http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Incubator/Updates , they're up 2.49% for the month (based on the incorrect incubator numbers). Sweet! They're on the move!

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/HebrewLearner

Polish is just going at lightning speeds! I wonder if it will be ready before I visit Poland even! Hebrew also making good progress. Judging by the amount of content on the Russian tree, I might even want to learn Russian(need to learn a mission critical language for extra points on the Foreign Service Officer Test).

August 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/zcggcz2

Ελληνικά hasn't moved in a while :(

September 1, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/lizsue

Spanish for German speakers just hatched: https://www.duolingo.com/comment/10308000 :)

September 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/rmwns

What happened to french for chinese?

August 30, 2015
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