Weekly Incubator Update: Tracking Progress from February 28th to March 6th

A long list of updates
Today's update includes the course updates from the last week including the ones from the earlier weeks that had missed due to my travel. The order of presenting the updates is slightly different from the regular sort order. It did not make sense to separate the multiple updates from the same course, so I have presented them together. The "regular programming" will resume next week :)

Apologies to my fellow incubator contributors for the delay in including your timely course updates on the WIU. In case I have still missed any update, please let me know. I will be happy to add them.

Two courses start beta
"Swedish for Arabic" and "Spanish for Russian" both have entered the exciting beta stage. This means that these courses are now available for all the eager learners around the globe. Congratulations to the two course teams and team Duolingo!

Two courses out of beta
The two courses teaching English both for Chinese and Japanese speakers have now graduated out of beta. Kudos to all involved to accomplish this long awaited accomplishment! This clears one of the bumps in the way for a Duolingo course teaching these languages to the English speakers. This is indeed a very exciting moment on the Duolingo journey!

PHASE 1 Progress: Total 25 courses

Spanish for Russian - 99% | 99% | 99% | Beta

Swedish for Arabic - 91% | 98% | 99% | Beta

Vietnamese for English - 100% | 100% | 100% | 100% (+0) 31-Jan-2050

Guarani for Spanish - 79% | 99% | 100% | 100% (+0)

Spanish for Chinese - 100% | 98% | 98% | 100% (+2)

Greek for English - 92% | 97% | 98% | 100% (+2) 5-May-2016

German for Arabic - 91% | 95% | 99% | 99% (+0) 9-Mar-2016

English for Thai  - 94% | 97% | 98% | 98% (+0)

Hebrew for English - 74% | 81% | 87% | 94% (+7) 10-Jun-2016

German for Italian - 82% | 81% | 81% | 82% (+1)

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

Romanian for English - 74% | 76% | 77% | 78% (+1)

Esperanto for Spanish - 43% | 54% | 64% | 68% (+4)

Spanish for Italian - 68% | 66% | 66% | 66% (+0)

Swedish for Russian - 61% | 61% | 62% | 62% (+0)

Portuguese for French - 60% | 59% | 59% | 59% (+0)

Swahili for English - 45% | 47% | 49% | 49% (+0) 1-Jun-2016 ^

Italian for Portuguese - 43% | 43% | 44% | 44% (+0)

Russian for Turkish - 42% | 39% | 43% | 43% (+0) 31-Dec-2016

French for Turkish - 40% | 39% | 39% | 39% (+0)

Czech for English - 33% | 34% | 36% | 37% (+1) 17-Apr-2017 ^

Hindi for English - 26% | 26% | 26% | 26% (+0) 15-Aug-2016 ^

Klingon for English - 21% | 21% | 21% | 21% (+0) 1-Aug-2016

French for Chinese - 9% | 9% | 9% | 9% (+0)

Korean for English - 0% | 8% | 12% | 8% (-4)

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

Indonesian for English - 1% | 1% | 1% | 1% (+0)

Course - 3 weeks ago | 2 weeks ago | a week ago | Now (Progress delta); Estimated Launch Date (provided by contributors) (Date delta)

Estimated Launch Date only when provided by the course contributors

Mean - 1.4% | 1.97% | 1.3% | 0.56% (-0.74)
Median - 0% | 0% | 0% | 0% (+0)

* This week's Leader Extraordinaire!
^ The Hungarian, Hindi, Czech, & Swahili teams' progress is as per their own calculation

Progress Visualized:

Here's what the contributing teams have said during the last week:
(For Phase-1 and Phase-2 courses by default, and for Phase-3 courses per request).

Eradus from Team Korean wrote 3 weeks ago:

Alpha Testing

Let me be clear. Team Korean has no intentions on selecting alpha testers. Not all courses do, and it shouldn't be assumed so.

spenerish from Team Korean wrote 2 weeks ago:


Hi guys,

First of all, thank you for the support and enthusiasm for the Korean course! As of now, it's only been a week since the course entered the Incubator and we already have over 6000 users signed up to hear from us. It's a humbling experience for us in the Korean team.

Second, the Korean team has welcomed HeuiJungNicky and myself as course contributors. Nicky and the team (Eradus, niskigwun, oree94, Croesus1983B) are very qualified individuals and I'm honored to work with them.

Finally, we've started working on the course! So far we've finished the skills teaching Hangul (the Korean alphabet) and we're putting the finishing touches to Basics 1 and 2. We predict that it'll be a while until the course is out (we want to make sure it's as perfect as we can make it) so for those of you who are dying to get started, you should check these videos out teaching Hangul!

niskigwun from Team Korean worte 18 hours ago:

Big News!

Korean is agglutinative, which means that, unlike in English, different grammatical pieces are squeezed into one word through suffixes rather than remaining separate. When we started building the course Duolingo didn't allow us to teach those pieces separately, so each combination had to be created in the system, multiplying as we added more base nouns and grammatical particles.

But, however, we are very excited to say that we can now teach each suffix individually one time. This means that our progress might stall for the next few days as we switch over to the new system, but once we get started moving forward again this will help us proceed faster than ever before :)

ckhadung from Team Vietnamese wrote 5 hours ago:

March, 2016

I received audio files this week and the team is currently reviewing each file. I would estimate this process takes about two weeks (one more week) and another two weeks for voice company to re-record some audio files that do not meet our expectation and one week for Duolingo Team to implement these files into the course.

The voice talent is of northern dialect but the recording has neutral pronunciation, making it easy to listen by both northern and southern dialects in Vietnamese language.


nueby from Team Czech wrote 2 weeks ago:

Week 33

691 words, 34.6%. No word progress to speak of, but we welcomed a new contributor and are looking forward to spreading the load. We also did some planning and decided to introduce the next major case, the locative, in the very row right after Numbers 2. The locative should allow the body part sentences to avoid being overly morbid.

nueby from Team Czech wrote a week ago:

Week 34

720 words, 36.0%. We have been working on the skill introducing the locative case.

nueby from Team Czech wrote 12 hours ago:

Week 35

740 words, 37.0%. Still working on the locative case skill, the body parts, and the month names.

avrichard from Team Hebrew wrote 2 weeks ago:

Diary of an Alpha Tester

Hi to everybody reading along out there in the Duolingoverse!

Recently, I was lucky enough to get the job as Alpha tester for the Hebrew team - and they asked me to give an update here on the experience. So far, a week in, it's been a lot of fun!

In short - my job is road testing whether the course makes sense to someone approaching the course as a learner with zero prior knowledge. But it's a little different to how I would normally learn a language in the past as I'm essentially forcing myself to ONLY use the tips & notes the team have written, in order to see how comprehensive and clear their work is. No looking at the wikipedia article of "Hebrew Grammar" etc, no "hmm, that's interesting, let me google that...", no searching YouTube to review conversational basics...!

The first step was testing whether someone with zero knowledge of the alphabet would be able to learn it via the Duolingo method. So far, so good! The course is still very much under construction, so it took some workarounds - for one thing there isn't any audio in yet, so I've been using the MacOS inbuilt Hebrew reader in the interim. It's not a great voice, but it's more or less doing the job so far so that I can try and build the sound-to-letter connections in my brain.

And the good news is, I can confirm that the Hebrew alphabet isn't too hard :) Give it a few days of practice, and you'll able to sounds things out well enough to jump into the topic lessons.

By day, I'm a high school teacher, and my professional life is mostly focussed on language pedagogy. In that field, I have worked on a number of projects over the years that involved setting up new language programs in schools. However, this is the first time I've ever been part of a team helping to design a course to teach a language that I don't actually speak myself (yet) - which is quite a different experience! But I am getting a distinct impression that for me as a teacher, this experience is going to give me a lot of insight that will influence me as a teacher in school also.

That's enough from me for the moment - but I should also thank the Hebrew Team for giving me this opportunity. They're doing a great job from what I've seen so far - it's a MAMMOTH job once you see it from the inside.

Signing off, thanks for reading :)

airelibre from Team Hebrew wrote yesterday:

The end is in sight!

Recently we've been making great progress, and indeed, we will soon have finished the bulk of the work on our side of the course. We currently have 2561/2735 words completed, and only a handful of skills left to complete. However, we then have to entrust the issue of the voice to the Duolingo team, and this might take a couple of months to be completed. So the course isn't right around the corner, but we are certainly nearing the finish line. I'm starting to gain confidence that our manually-set estimated completion date of June 10th is on the safer side of things.

We also continue to receive highly valuable feedback from our alpha tester (read his update from a couple of weeks ago, below this one, if you missed it!). The impression he has given us so far is that the course is suitable for complete beginners. We have just been ironing out a few tiny niggles such as keyboard typos.

During the voice acquisition process we will still have some things to do. We already have tips and notes prepared for a large part of the tree, including the introductory skills (where they are vital), but we will continue to double and triple check those and write up any pending tips and notes.

If you'd like to follow the action more closely, join our Facebook group.

mptmpt from Team Greek wrote 3 weeks ago

Progress Update

In the last couple of months there was tremendous progress towards the completion of the Greek course. Even though we are close to our target, there is still work left to be done. The progress number you see above is a simple indication showing that we have at least three sentence examples for each of the proposed words in the vocabulary, and it knows nothing about the quality of these sentences, or even if they are correct. In the next couple of months we will have to go through all the exercises, and review all the sentences. We have to make sure they are complete, remove all the errors and add all the possible alternatives. It is a long process, so please be patient. Our volunteers are spending a considerable amount of their free time working towards the completion of the course.

I am setting the date to May 5, but this is a rough guestimate, I hope we will be able to go through the tests and inspections before that.

Special thanks to Theo_Matrakas, he works in an insane pace, he is responsible for most of the recent progress.

mptmpt from Team Greek wrote 2 weeks ago

Some more Info

I have seen several comments related to the course, the dates and the progress. Many people are asking how to join the Beta testing when it is released. The answer is simple, when the course is in Beta, everybody with a Duolingo account will be able to start using it. If you wish to receive an e-mail notification, visit the course page here and select the "Notify me when available" option.

Several people have volunteered to be Alpha testers for the course. Unfortunately this is not possible with the current tools that Duolingo provides. There is some progress, and it might be available soon, but there is a very good chance that the Greek course will be released before that.

For the rest of the questions you might have, ask them here and I will try my best to provide an answer.

AndrsBrny from Team Hungarian wrote 2 weeks ago:

More progress, Facebook, Google+

Hello again,

we've made some solid progress this week, and we've now added multiple translations to 45% of the sentences that were missing them a couple of months ago. As you might remember, we set 50% as the main goal before going to beta, so we're getting closer.

An example of what we're doing

I thought this week that I'd give you an example of why we think it's important to do this. English has fairly simple word order. Usually, it is SVO, or “subject verb object” — sometimes you also add an adverbial, or a prepositional phrase. Take the following example:

  • The lazy teacher is writing onto the window.

The lazy teacher is the subject, is writing is the verb, and onto the window is a prepositional phrase. Easy enough! And this can be translated to Hungarian as follows:

  • A lusta tanár ír az ablakra.

Again, we have a subject, a lusta tanár, a verb, ír, and something similar to a prepositional phrase in English, az ablakra. Still with me?

We need multiple translations, because in Hungarian, any of the following word orders are also fine:

-Ír a lusta tanár az ablakra. ~ Is writing the lazy teacher onto the window.
-Az ablakra ír a lusta tanár. ~ Onto the window is writing the lazy teacher.
-Az ablakra a lusta tanár ír. ~ Onto the window the lazy teacher is writing.
-A lusta tanár az ablakra ír. ~ The lazy teacher onto the window is writing.

When sentences are more complex, we sometimes have even more possibilities. Because you'll learn all kinds of different word orders, we have to make sure that we also accept all your correct translations — whether you guess them or whether you've figured out these intricacies. :-)

This is one of the things we're dealing with — not all sentences will have all the possible translations when we enter beta, but we wanted to make sure we have a head start, as it's quite important. woolfool has made added a great number of translations this week, and DonaldKron is doing fantastic work with fixing our sentences with proper names in them. So — good progress this week!


In other news, I also created a Google+ community this week, as a sister to the Facebook group.

Summary (tl;dr)

The Facebook group is very active, which is great! There's also a Google+ community now. And we're making good progress with our multiple translations, we've crossed 45% (see an example above).

Have a great week and you'll hear from us again soon!

AndrsBrny from Team Hungarian wrote a week ago:

Célegyenes (‘home stretch')

Hello everyone,

there's plenty of great news this week, as well as some, let's say, lack of great news! First of all, due to a continuing great effort from DonaldKron and woolfool (who added over 500 translations this week!), we've reached our 50% limit of fixing sentences with a single translation.

In addition, DonaldKron finished fixing our entries with proper names, we filled up our word images and I checked and updated our tips and notes — the first 18 or so skills come with (hopefully!) useful grammatical explanations now.

Alright — what is there to be sad about with all this greatness? It looks like we're basically ready to jump into beta, but there is one more thing we have to check first (and you can blame me for this; well, in part, at least). We have a good number of sentences with actual audio recordings by actual Hungarian speakers, so we have some top-notch quality stuff here. But we've slightly neglected checking the status of these sentences and getting audio for the skills that we completed over the last few months.

In principle, this doesn't have to slow us down from entering the beta phase, but I'm in touch with the Duolingo community people to see whether we can keep adding audio while in beta or whether we have to wait for everything to be done before we enter it. — Sorry about that, but: we've never been this close!

Summary (tl;dr)

More great progress! We've reached several of the goals we set ourselves for entering the beta stage; what remains to be done now is to check with the Duolingo community whether they agree that we're ready to go.

As always, thanks for your continued interest, your feedback, and last but not least, your patience!

AndrsBrny from Team Hungarian wrote a week ago:

Sunday, Sunday, gotta update on Sunday

Hello everyone,

there is not too much to report this week. We've made some progress with getting a better overview of our recordings (we have more than 2200 great recordings so far!), and one thing we're trying to find out as quickly as we can is how many more recordings we could get. It was suggested to me that this should happen before entering beta, so that's the cause for the current delay. Again, I'm very sorry about this, but the silver lining is that the course is going to be even better when you get to see it.

In the meantime, we're busy continuing fixing the other issues, adding translations, tips and notes, and other improvements here and there. We'll get there!

Summary (tl;dr)

A fairly quiet week, waiting to hear back about additional recordings and some fixes. But we're continuing to improve the course in the meantime, before heading to beta soon!

Thanks once again for the nice feedback and your patience!

AndrsBrny from Team Hungarian wrote 7 hours ago:

Working on...

Hello, hello,

another week has gone by, and we're still waiting to hear from duolingo about the status of our recordings, so I don't have much to report on any possible beta dates — sorry!

We're not just idling, however: we're using the extra time before beta to reorganise the course in some ways that should be more helpful to you, and we were promised the chance to get additional recordings — it will be a priority for these not to push back the release date much further, though.

In the meantime, finish up your other course trees and other tasks, so you can focus on Hungarian soon!

Have a good Sunday and a great week!

Lextum8 from Team EO for ES wrote 3 weeks ago:

Ĝisdatigo 3 | Actualización 3

Bienvenida Soraya al equipo!

Ocurrió algo muy extraño en la incubadora, por lo que no podemos ver verdaderamente el progreso hecho. Aparecen 5000 palabras, lo cual es imposible, en cuanto las cosas se aclaren editaré esta publicación para poner el número correcto.

Tanto el porcentaje como el día estimado de publicación están mal, el porcentaje está entre el 47% y 48%, y la fecha no la modificaremos para que se acomode sola cuando todo vuelva a la normalidad.

Aproximadamente 860 palabras y 141 imágenes.

Lextum8 from Team EO for ES wrote 2 weeks ago:

Ĝisdatigo 4 | Actualización 4

¡Superamos la mitad del curso! Porcentaje: 54%

1004 palabras y 184 imágenes

Lextum8 from Team EO for ES wrote a week ago:

Ĝisdatigo 5 | Actualización 5

¡64% esta semana! Seguramente en algún momento en las próximas semanas, el porcentaje retroceda por ciertas cosas relacionadas a la organización de nuestro curso y del curso paralelo para hablantes de inglés, pero este progreso significa muchísimo! Esperamos poder añadir gente cuando tengamos más invitaciones para usar en la incubadora.

Soraya Álvarez (soraya.o) Empecé a aprender esperanto en febrero de 2014 y participé en el Congreso Universal el mismo año en el cual también me ofrecí como voluntaria. Soy parte de AEL (liga argentina de esperanto) como revisora de cuentas y ayudo en la traducción de la página web de TEJO al español. Además estudio gestión ambiental urbana en la universidad.

1205 palabras (de aproximadamente un número final de 1900/2000) y 200 imágenes

Lextum8 from Team EO for ES wrote an hour ago:

Ĝisdatigo 6 | Actualización 6

68% esta semana, bastante poco comparado a las últimas semanas, pero seguimos avanzando.

1280 palabras y 200 imágenes

BrandenRyan from Team Swahili wrote 3 weeks ago:

Tangazo la Saba

Haraka haraka haina baraka!

This is a famous Swahili proverb that means Haste has no blessings. As mentioned in the previous update, Peace Corps Tanzania is currently beginning a new training cycle of Trainees for the next two and a half months. Mama Rehema and Emilian will be heavily involved in the training, and I have been involved in logistics and some training aspects for the two weeks. Our progress has slowed down significantly for the time being, but after next week, I will be working alone on the course for a while while the other two core members are involved in the language training here. The progress should be slow and steady, and while there might not be visible progress in the Incubator, we do discuss the course in person regularly - one of the benefits of the nature of our group!

We apologize if it seems as though the course has been abandoned because that is not the case whatsoever! After the last update, some work was done on the course, so we can estimate that we are 47% completed with the course. We are dedicated to creating the best course possible, so we're thankful for the support and patience from the entire community!

Ninawatakia wiki njema! - I wish you all a good week!

BrandenRyan from Team Swahili wrote a week ago:

Tangazo la Nane

Penye nia pana njia!

Course Update

With the addition of the new Alpha Tester feature in the Incubator, the Swahili-English team is proud to introduce our first three Alpha Testers for the course while we continue our progress.

Riah Werner is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) from Tanzania who served as a secondary school English Teacher from 2011-2013 and then as an English teacher at a vocational school in Kilimanjaro region from 2013-2015. Her experience teaching English as a foreign language to Tanzanians will serve as a great resource in analyzing how our translations between Swahili and English are structured.

Ron Meyer served as an Agriculture (Environment) PCV with his wife from 2011-2014. Being embedded as an Agriculture Volunteer and working with his wife, who served in the Health Sector, Ron has a wide knowledge of technical language that will help in the development of our vocabulary lessons.

Sam Owens is a current Volunteer in Tanzania where he works as a secondary school science and math teacher. He is also a member of Peace Corps Tanzania's ICT/Media group and has the technological skills, as well as language skills, that will help facilitate the work of the Alpha Testers.

At this point in the development of the Swahili course, we invited Alpha Testers with a knowledge of Swahili so that they can help us proof the finished skills and lessons for mistakes while providing feedback and recommendations for unfinished skills and lessons. Once we move closer to finishing the course as a whole, we will invite Alpha Testers with no Swahili experience in order to assess the teachability of the course.

Although it might look like we haven't been very active the past three weeks, I assure you that this past week I've been diligently working on different elements of the course. As I mentioned in the last update, Rehema and Emilian are not currently able to work on the course as they're assisting with Peace Corps Tanzania's language training for a new group of Trainees until April. I was also at the training for two weeks and I will be back next week. This week, though, I've finished almost all of the Tips and Notes sections for the course! With almost 70 skills in our tree, I only have about 20 more skills that need their sections formatted and uploaded. I estimate that another 10 or so will be finished by the end of today.

Since I'll be in the field next week, progress might hit a lull, but for the next two weeks, these are the course goals:

  • Finish all Tips and Notes sections
  • Fully populate all skills in the tree – approximately 1,400-1,500 words
    -Reach 950/1,400 words completed

These might be ambitious goals for me to complete alone with the assistance of the Alpha Testers, but “Where there's a will, there's a way” - that's this update's Swahili proverb above!

As of now, I'd estimate that we are about 49% complete with the course. Not quite halfway, but pretty close to it! The Estimated Date of Completion will remain the same for now, but it will likely change. This primarily depends on finding a suitable TTS program for Swahili!

Tutaonana wiki mbili zijazo!

mvchamad from Team SV for AR wrote 6 days ago:

بعد انتظار على جمر -- مجيدو لسان العرب يحولون لمذ السويدية الآن!

أخيراً، وبعد جهود جهيدة بذلها، وأوقات طوال قضاها فريقنا في تصوير وإتمام هذا المدرَس، يسرنا تدشينه مطليقنه في مرحلته العاقبة - البيتا أو باء - وهي مرحلة تجريبية كما يوحي مسماها ستولى فيها مساهماتكم من بلاغات وإفادات وتعليقات عما صح من تراجيم دور القلب >النابض.

الفريق لن يكل ولن يمل قائماً بملء المنهاج مما صح من تراجيم مختلفة، تلك السويدية منها للعربية، والعكس. كما نعمل على تدبير إصدار بعد آخر من شجرة المهارات مسهبين فيه ممعنين في جلاء ما صعب من جوانب النحو السويدي وسيمائه، حيث سنردف مهارات عديدة بعد، وسنلحق كل مهارة شرحاً يجليها. علاوة على ما ذكر، لن ننساكم من تزكياتنا وتوصياتنا بالمعاجم ومصادر التعلم الذاتي، وسنحرص على إجابة ما تسنح لنا الفرصة الإجابة عليه مما يروبكم!>

طاب لكم تعلمكم!


"Swedish for Arabic" and "Spanish for Russian" have moved to beta. "English for Japanese" and "English for Chinese" courses have graduated from beta. All the course updates that were missed on the last few editions of WIU have made it in this week's post. Enjoy!

The next update is expected on Sunday, 13th of March at 4:00 pm UTC.

Previous Update 21-Feb to 28-Feb

Last updates from:
2016: Feb, Jan
2015: Dec, Nov, Oct, Sep, Aug, Jul, Jun, May, Apr, Mar, Feb, Jan
2014: Dec, Nov, Oct, Sep, Aug, Jul, Jun, May, Apr, Mar, Feb, Jan, 1st.

March 7, 2016


Regarding the last Korean update about being able to now teach suffixes individually, is this an incubator wide update to the course building software, i.e. is it also available to other agglutinative languages such as Finnish, Japanese and Tamil?

March 7, 2016

Yes, the incubator team of Duolingo recently released this enhancement.

March 7, 2016

Finnally! It's happening! :D

March 7, 2016

I (Baltic) sea what you did there :D

March 7, 2016

Awesome! That could have huge implications for not only other agglutinative languages, but also polysynthetic languages like Inuktitut and Cherokee, etc. I'm glad Duo found a way over that hurdle and will be excited to see what comes next :D

March 8, 2016

They seem to be rather serious getting in five NatAm languages on duo. :)

March 9, 2016

Don't forget Turkish! :)

March 7, 2016

No, I also thought of Turkish but they have already built their course (so too Hungarian). Maybe they can take advantage of this new feature when they do a revised tree.

March 7, 2016

I notice that the Hungarian course has dropped several percent in the past few days (just like Korean has), so they might well be implementing this new system while they wait for their extra audio.

March 8, 2016

And Esperanto!

March 7, 2016

Swahili, too.

March 7, 2016

And Klingon!

March 7, 2016

And Amharic! :)

March 7, 2016

An exciting development, to be sure.

March 7, 2016

I don't know as much about English for Chinese, but I understand that English for Japanese deserves a HUGE round of applause for graduating from beta. Due to the near-infinite possibilities of correct translations from English to Japanese, which I believe exceeded the Duolingo limits (as of last year), graduating from beta was a mammoth if not impossible task. Congratulations! And of course, thanks to Jitengore for bringing us these updates! Welcome back :-)

March 7, 2016

Thanks for the great Vietnamese update ckhadung. So exciting that the course will be out so soon!

March 7, 2016

If there are no unexpected delays the course should be released in one month (1 + 2 + 1 weeks ahead).

March 7, 2016

4 more weeeeeks for Viet!! >.< faints

March 7, 2016

Slow, but sure.

March 7, 2016

Slow and steady wins the race.

March 7, 2016

great progress for hebrew and cant wait for korean! :D

March 7, 2016

Awww first time Hebrew is the leader extraordinaire and it didn't get the asterisk/boldface :(

Thanks for the update as usual!

March 7, 2016

I have noticed it too, I almost write it down :)

March 7, 2016

I think it's time to put Hungarian at 100% since they are posting every week and saying that they are almost ready :DI'm impatient to start learning with duolingo!

March 7, 2016

Yup. Seems like time.

March 8, 2016

Thank you for the wonderful progress feedback teams Korean, Vietnamese, and Czech! And way to go teams Hungarian, Hindi, Czech and Swahili! This is exciting news. Thank you for sharing the progress with us! I love it! :-)

March 7, 2016

I will be very surprised if it only takes one week to implement the Vietnamese audio. The new audio for Irish was approved by the team in December and we have yet to hear it. Of course I wouldn't be surprised nor bothered if the Vietnamese or Hungarian audio got implemented faster; I'd imagine Duolingo would prioritize getting these courses into beta over improving an already-stable course (although many of us are waiting to do the Irish course until we get the new audio...). I also understand how eagerly people are waiting for Hungarian and Vietnamese ;-) But, I personally would expect a longer waiting time for audio implementation.

March 7, 2016

I think the Irish audio might be tied to their tree 2.0, though. If so, that would add a lot to the time.

March 7, 2016

This doesn't seem to be the case according to the course team... They also seem to expect the new audio to come first. I don't believe they have finished tree 2.0 either, so they can't have requested the new recordings.

March 7, 2016

I'd put my money on the new Irish audio coming on St Pat's Day as a celebratory release and publicity thing.

March 8, 2016

Oh wow I'd be so excited if that's the case! Less than two weeks away!

March 8, 2016

Of course Duolingo central may very well have tied the audio to tree 2.0. That we can't know for the moment... I really hope the audio arrives sooner!!

March 7, 2016

Also, does count as an update for Yiddish for English speakers? :)

March 7, 2016

Unfortunately, no :(

I can only commit to reading from the official incubator course pages.

March 7, 2016

There's also this for anyone worrying about Indonesian for English.

March 7, 2016

Thanks for the link! Good to hear that the Yiddish team is in action.

March 7, 2016

How is it possible that the Vietnamese voice can have a 'neutral' accent?

March 7, 2016

Hello BahasaInglish! Neutral here means the voice talent will try to pronounce some sounds that people with Northern dialect usually pronounce wrong (e.g s, tr, r, d, e, ưu, ươu). So the voice will become more close to the Southern dialect, in which s, tr, r are different from x, ch and d/gi.

March 7, 2016

Thank you for the reply :) But who is to say what is the right or wrong pronunciation? If the people in the North and South of Vietnam speak differently, can you really say that one way is more correct than the other. It just seems a bit strange to me that they would hire a Northern speaker and ask him to modify his speech so that it is closer to that of a Southerner. If that is what you want, why not just hire a Southerner in the first place and let him speak naturally? For me, I would pick one or the other, Northern or Southern, and let them speak naturally. It doesn't really even matter which is chosen, the main thing is that they are not trying to change their pronunciation in a way that is unnatural for them. But I am far from an expert in tiếng Việt, so I am very happy for someone to educate me more about accents! I am excited for the launch of the course :)))

March 7, 2016

I think a southerner speaking in their dialect would be just as problematic as a northerner... I don't know much about Vietnamese, but in Arabic "neutralizing" means avoiding the words and pronunciations that are the most incomprehensible for people who speak other dialects. They try to meet in the middle, but can still be identified as their native accent. It may not be ideal but I think it's the best way to go to avoid a preference for an accent, and to have learners pick up pronunciation that is globally understood.

March 7, 2016

Hi, as cdub4language replied, it is true that I want to avoid a preference for a dialect. Although many people do not concern which one is chosen, many others do share a concern, even a serious one.

For the Vietnamese overseas, they are very likely to use southern accent, particularly in the United States. The community is so strong that the use of Vietnamese language in the States is still of the southern dialect nowadays (pre-1975's writing style, not just pronunciation). Since people of second generation (Vietnamese Americans, etc...) can really take advantage of this course to learn the language of their parents, it is not fair to force them to listen and follow northern dialect.

The choice of either dialects may be simple, but it also relates to politics and history of the Vietnam War, which is too complicated to discuss here.

March 7, 2016

Thanks for the replies, it's really interesting to hear about neutralizing to standard accents. And ckhadung is right, it's best to keep discussions about politics and history well away from language learning! ;) Anyway, for someone who is not learning Vietnamese for any specific personal reason, other than because it is a language from south-east Asia, I am not too concerned which accent you go for.....

March 8, 2016

Yes, picking the dialect according to the likely users makes perfect sense! :D

If Duolingo later has more Vietnamese courses, then customizing each of those this way would work too. For example, if more Vietnamese overseas in China who do know Vietnamese use the northern dialect then the Vietnamese for Chinese speakers course could be on the northern side of neutral at the same time the Vietnamese for English speakers course is on the southern side of neutral. :)

Likewise, when Duolingo teaches Latin in the future (see ), that would be great for schools with Latin classes. To decide whether the Latin for English speakers course should use classical Latin or church Latin, they can ask Latin teachers in English-speaking countries which one to use. :)

March 8, 2016

Hungarian is at 99%, they are not at 80 anymore since a long time. They are just waiting for the audio

March 7, 2016

Technically they're waiting to hear weather they can add the missing audio while in beta, or if they have to add the audio before they enter beta.

Just read their incubator updates if you don't believe me.

March 8, 2016

Thank you, jitengore! Was excited to see a fully updated WIU this morning.

Hope you had a good trip.

March 7, 2016

I am sensing a possibility of a triple release; Vietnamese, Hungarian and Greek. Or at least a dual release with any of those combinations. Exciting times!

March 7, 2016
  • 1727

Great ! Spanish for Chinese is alpha testing !

March 7, 2016

How do we sign up?

May 4, 2016

Great to see great progress ;)

March 7, 2016

Wow, so many updates and lots of exciting news! It is very bittersweet as I want to learn many languages that are about to be released but I hardly have enough time to learn the 5 I am currently studying.

March 7, 2016

Good to know I'm not the only one. While solidifying my completed Norwegian tree, I've accidentally hit level 6 in Russian and 5 in Welsh. Neither of those are even at the top of my list. :-)

March 7, 2016

Esperanto for Spanish speakers is making solid progress, I'm looking forward to taking that to help me with my Spanish.

I'm looking forward to the Klingon course as well, but it is disappointing to see that it's been stuck at 21% for three/four months, barring the glitch that caused a bit of a stir last month.

loghaD says that this is because they are working behind the scenes, carefully choosing what words and affixes will be taught where, (it must take longer to do that than you'd think).

Only time will tell if the 6th of August is a realistic estimate for launch for the Klingon course.

March 8, 2016

Thanks for the update! :)

Swahili for English speakers had an update last week, but both this week's WIU and last week's WIU leave it out:

March 7, 2016

Swahili is the last course update left on my plate now which I am adding right now. I think I have added all the other updates that I had missed during my travel.

If there are any others that I have missed, please let me know! :)

March 7, 2016

No missing ones I am aware of, but just a minor detail: the last three Hungarian ones are attributed to the Greek team.

Thanks again for making these!

March 7, 2016

Haha! corrected.

March 7, 2016

Looks like you missed Swedish for Arabic...

March 7, 2016

Thanks, DrSwordopolis. I have added the Swedish for Arabic update. And yes, I had a good time-off!

March 8, 2016

I have a question for you Jitengore:

As those are the most followed post in Duolingo's forum, could you add links for the languages which are trying to enter to the incubator, after the ones who are already in?

It would be nice to have a link to the Basque grammar post which is being build by Alec737.

As Many other languages which are doing the same.( I think: Chinese,Japanese, etc.)

Like this, people who are waiting for these languages to be published can acces very easily to this nice grammar posts :D

This wouldn't take too much time from you I think but you are free to reject this proposal :D

March 8, 2016

I generally like the idea, xavi_fr. However I have a few reservations:
- I have always thought of WIU as a report on courses that are currently in the incubator.
- Once I include the yet to be added language pairs, it would be hard not to be partial in deciding what I include and what I don't.
- I would not know which posts are worthy of a mention and which are not.
- I have no insight on which courses are likely to make it to the incubator.

If someone would like to volunteer for compiling a list of such notes, I would encourage them to either write a separate post OR include a comment on the WIU posts.

March 13, 2016

I understand :D But poor grammar notes, they will be lost in the forums if there is nothing (almost sticky) which remainds they exist. It would mean adding a lot of lines, that is also true. Or maybe all in a line like:

GRAMAR NOTES for other languages (not in the incubator)

BASQUE-GALICIAN-CHINESE-JAPANESE-etc in alphabetical order or reverse I will search all the languages I can now

March 13, 2016

But poor grammar notes, they will be lost in the forums if there is nothing (almost sticky)

Not if they are well referred to (like having "basque's grammar notes" part of the title and inside the OP). In such it' easy for anyone lookig for such notes to find them thanks to one of the logical and simple searches:

  • "XXXX's grammar notes"
  • XXXX AND "grammar notes"
  • XXXX AND grammar AND notes

with XXX replaced with the language name.

The third one for Basque, for example, already returns this discussion and only among 4 results so easy to find. ;)

March 13, 2016

Thanks jrikhal! I didn't know the "" trick was working here. For basque you can also search "gero arte" see you later :D

March 13, 2016

Yep it does and all the standard logical connectors and "punctuations" in search-engines too:

  • OR
  • AND
  • - ("minus")
  • ""
  • parenthesis
March 13, 2016

Basque(1)- Basque(2)- Bulgarian- Chinese(1)- Chinese(2)- Croatian- Finnish- Georgian- Greenlandic- Hebrew- Japanese- Latin- Lithuanian- Macedonian- Maltese- Nahuatl- Others

I added only the courses which have a table of contents or links to move from lesson to lesson. And only the ones which didn't enter to the incubator. - > click

March 13, 2016

What made it out of Beta, and what went into beta?

March 7, 2016

English for Chinese and for Japanese made it out of beta. It's a big deal, because they had both been in beta for about 2 years. Now the oldest one in beta is Ukrainian.

The ones going into beta can be seen at the top of the list of phase 1 languages.

March 7, 2016

Why isn't Guarani out yet??

March 7, 2016

Very very likely because it's not ready yet.

100% only means that all the lexemes they have entered up to now in the tree to be taught have enough sentences using each of them. But they may add more lexemes (or not), may need to work on other exercises than "translation" ones, may need to run some checks, to add standard alternative correct translations (they may have decided to first "create the tree with one translation per exercise then in a second phase making the second half of the job to add alternatives translations", each team work as they want), even once they consider to have finish the job there is still a delay for staff to (technically) check etc.

In short: forgot the percentage, just trust the release date if there is one and if not, consider it's not being released soon (like that, you can only have a good surprise ;) )

March 7, 2016

Not to mention the audio. If there's no good TTS for Vietnamese, then there probably isn't one for Guarani.

Of course, since the team isn't the most communicative (likely due to the amount of negative comments they got at the beginning of the tree's construction), it is quite difficult to say where they are about any of these things

March 7, 2016

What negative comments? I haven't seen any.

March 12, 2016

Near when the course was first announced, the team got a lot of flack for making the course in the Jopara dialect (which is apparently spoken by the vast majority of Guarani speakers), rather than a more traditional/purist form of the language, as Jopara (unsurprisingly) contains a ton of borrowings from Spanish and is thus considered by some to be 'just a pidgin'.

Also their one update released was in English rather than in Spanish, which was probably a bad move.

March 12, 2016

And don't trust the date on the course's incubator page, unless it's been set manually. The automatic dates just go by the automatic percentage.

March 7, 2016

Oh ok thanks:-)

March 7, 2016

So many courses made it to beta within in the last weeks, with a few more lined up to graduate very soon. I wonder which languages will be added to the incubator next - and how many at a once.

March 9, 2016

vietnamese ?

March 7, 2016
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