https://www.duolingo.com/Mafaldannabris

Why are all the russian sentences not written in cyrillic alphabet but in latin alphabet??

Hello, I am not a beginner in russian, and I find it very disturbing that the russian sentences from the new russian course are not written in cyrillic alphabet! I find it very difficult to know how to translate the cyrillic letter in the latin alphabet, and it adds another difficulty. For example I did not know that х in russian should be written kh, or if я would be ya or ia, or ж should be written zh in latin alphabet! And I don't know how to write in the latin alphabet the letters й or и, or the difference between э or е., or ь оr ц or ж! And I don't want to learn that, it's useless.

Why are the russian sentences not in cyrillic? I never learnt this translation, so that in the first tests I always made errors in writing the russian words in latin alphabet and could not pass the tests, although I can pass it in russian alphabet! For example, I did not find it clear that uzhe means actually уже...

Is that something you can change? Because as it is, I won't be able to use this course and I am not keen on learning to write russian with latin letters. Thanks in advance

November 20, 2015

25 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/alexm768

Try that tiny button and say boo to the interface designer:

Looks like that question is the most popular on the forum.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Middangeard

I'm beginning to think they need to start pointing that out at the start of every lesson in the Alphabet section. It was really obvious for me, but doesn't seem that way for most.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

Or making the default Cyrillic. I had a moment of 'my eyes! my eyes!' before I saw the button.

I do think it's a shame people keep getting voting down so heavily for asking the question :-/

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

Or maybe making a sticky post named "How do I change the Russian course to Cyrillic", or something of that sort.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/flootzavut

That would be a good step. I get the impression a lot of people never make it this far, but evidently those who post questions about it do, so it would help them!

I think Shady_arc mentions it in his alphabet/keyboard post, but I think a lot of people don't think to look there for this issue, which is sort of understandable.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Middangeard

I have a feeling that there are a lot of people that have never been to the website because of relying solely on the app. I didn't even know that the app was an extension of the website for the longest time. And I wonder how many users that do come to the website will never even bother going to the discussions.

I think in the end, something in the introductory lessons to assist with the unique features would be best. Hopefully it's a little more obvious when it does come to the app, but judging how often I've seen people be oblivious to the largest of buttons in other apps (or even tell me "I had no idea that the back button would actually take me back!"), there will never be a perfect solution, no matter how much we highlight it!

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SiblingCreature

@TimothyCrabtree Currently the Android app doesn't seem to have a transliteration mode at all. It defaults to showing the Cyrillic script even if the website is set to show the transliteration.

Personally I think they should just make the Cyrillic script mode the default mode. If someone prefers to use the transliterations they would still have the option but I see no reason to have it as the default.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SiblingCreature

@A_User I'd argue that that's not really a good reason to do it. Everyone has to start somewhere, and that's what the early alphabet lessons are for - easing the new student into the Cyrillic script. By defaulting to transliteration they are effectively cheating the new student out of their best opportunity to start getting used to the new script.

Personally, I actually think they should get rid of transliteration as a separate mode altogether, and just include it as a pronunciation guide in the mouse-over tips.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

Yeah, that isn't really where I would look either. It would help if people would use the search feature, though.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SiblingCreature

@A_User Actually i don't see why it couldn't be changed at any time. The thing is though that it would most likely have to be done by the duolingo team, rather than the Russian course contributors. After all, it would not involve any change in the material, just in how that material is presented in the interface.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

They probably have the transliteration as default for those who start knowing no Cyrillic.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Middangeard

@SiblingCreature I don't currently see Russian available on the android app. I didn't think it was available yet on any of the apps.

I tried using Russian on my android tablet once and it seemed to behave the same as the website for me. Though I haven't seen it on an Android phone yet since I don't have access to one, so there could be a difference there.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

@SiblingCreature I personally would agree with you. But I don't know if that would even be possible until they make a new tree.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/SiblingCreature

@TimothyCrabtree I cheat a bit to use it in the app. ;-)
If you switch to Russian on the site, it also switches to it in the app, but then presents you with a screen telling you you can't use it. But that screen can be bypassed, and you can take the lessons anyway. :-)

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

Cheating is, well, cheating! Oh well, I've cheated in that sort of fashion before as well. :-D

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51

That's not cheating! It's giving the stupid machine the two-by-four where it does the most good! Not the way to treat people, for sure, but until someone can prove an artificial intelligence is self-aware (enough not to be so stupid), well, it's the one who gets to take the orders. ;)

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

@SiblingCreature I don't know enough about how they do that sort of thing to argue with you, so I won't even attempt it. But if it is the Duolingo team who does it, they're apparently rather swamped, and I suspect this wouldn't be that high of a priority. But if you want them to see this, maybe we should make a new post with the suggestion?

November 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Blockhause

For me it was very obvious as well, but as you said, it doesn't seem like that for everybody.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mafaldannabris

indeed I should say boo the designer... one can really oversee it!

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Blockhause

When you are doing a lesson, there is the option to change alphabet in the upper left corner. Click on it and it will change to Cyrillic.

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Mafaldannabris

oh I did not know! it´s perfect then! Thanks a lot!

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51

For the record, I want to register an objection with those people who downvoted this discussion. I don't know your reasons, but it is a legitimate activity to ask a question, and this is neither a stupid question nor off-point. Downvoting should be reserved for inappropriate or troll-like activity. Otherwise, live and let live!

November 20, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

I agree! согласное, I think the word was. Or согласна.

November 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Theron126

Согласна. Write it a hundred times and you'll remember :-) The masculine form is согласен.

November 21, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/A_User

At least I got the feminine form right! согласен, согласна. If I write it a hundred times, I'll also get really fast at typing it! :-)

November 23, 2015
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