Has absolutely nothing changed in over a year?
I want to start off by saying that this is not intended to be a rant towards the Duolingo staff, but rather an open discussion with a bit of complaining.
As you can see, I have been using Duolingo for a very long time, learning several languages. Amazing application, hands down 100%. Duolingo's approach is just fantastic, and obviously, the most complete set of language learning tools.
I stopped using Duolingo, eventually (losing a 150 day streak), and sort of lost the motive to continue learning with Duolingo. It simply just got repetitive and boring. I decided to just go out in the real world more, and rely a lot less on Duolingo.
However, he is where my issue is...
Duolingo doesn't seem to be doing anything to introduce new features!
Lingot Store Why, after a year and a half, are there still only like 2 or 3 items that can be purchased? Seriously, why do I have 4k lingots just sitting there for nothing.
Games/Courses Without being too negative, the selection still sucks! Could you at least bring back the old word practice mode? Maybe bring back the hearts mode?
Nothing really seems to have changed AT ALL O.O I honestly cannot tell a single difference in Duolingo a year ago to today... I know more language support has been added, but, to be realistic, most people are going to only stick with one, two, and maybe three languages in most cases. The reality is, that while yes you definitely need new language support, there is HARDLY any new lessons available in ratio to the amount of time that has passed. This point here could be a bit unfair, so, I give you that benefit of the doubt, but seriously... Not even a new design? Nothing? Maybe there is some sort of beta group that I am not apart of?
Friend feature Still pretty basic. Given that this is a language learning site, and people rely so heavily on the discussion form, I am surprised that I still can't even reliably connect with other language learners and interact with them on Duolingo.com . O.o In addition to that, I still can only see like 5 notifications. What if I get six friend requests before I check? How do I find the friends to connect without hunting down a list of people?
Nonetheless, as you can obviously see, I am back once again and loving Duolingo. However, I feel like it's going to get repetitive all over again.
PS: Please allow me to make this clear. I am NOT demanding an overhual on Duolingo in anyway, nor being ungrateful of it's free nature. Nobody is asking for free stuff. As a consumer, I am simply providing feedback as to why I PERSONALLY left Duolingo. Not why anyone else has. Thanks (:
How do others feel about this?
Lingots, streaks, XP's and levels: the main reason is to motivate. And it works: there is a hall of fame for each of them. The most usefull way to use lingots is to give them away to people helping other students.
You can practice words with the 'Duolingo Vocabulary Manager'. The hearts mode is still there in the 'test out' function.
There are not only new languages and new courses. Existing courses have new lessons and skills. New voices are introduced. Many courses are working on a tree 2.0 version.
You can connect with other learners in your profile. You have also the email notification. The max notification of 5 is motivating to use DL each day and look at the new discussion where you can help other students.
Duolingo will not give many options you can choose, because DL would be to complex for some / new users and the maintenance cost woild be too high.
There are many options you can choose with user scripts, like the 'Duolingo Vocabulary Manager',
Duolingo Stats, Duoling Reverse Tree Enhancer, DuoDirectLinks, Duolingo Course Progress, Duolingo, Duolingo ReviewTrim tree, DuoLessonsFix, DuoProfile, Duo-Blog, ..
Not all scripts works in all browsers and / or all courses.
You already made the point I came here to make, that new language courses have been added and existing ones reworked.
Just to give some details: 15 new courses have been released in beta since June 2015. So although some other courses seem like they're growing roots in the alpha phase, there has really been a lot of new material published.
You'd think though, that after a year and a half, we could at LEAST purchase a new item from the lingot store. Hell, they even still have the EXACT same outfits.
But isn't that mode available ONLY if you have not completed the course? What if I have already finished it ?
I do see new courses, and are grateful for them.
4.Yay, more spam in my inbox that already gets 2million emails a day? Doesn't sound useful. Plus, most people are too lazy to scroll through hundreds of emails to simply find a notification.
If I think about the changes I've seen over the past year, the first thing that comes to mind is the amount of effort and development that have gone into the "schools" side of Duolingo. Many people have suggested that there should be more development for advanced "regular" users, but I think Duo is more interested in extending the number of bi- or multi-lingual learners in the world.
From a business aspect, I highly doubt that the creators of duolingo are just sitting around, smoking cigars in the meeting room and congratulating each other on a 'job well-done'. Odds are that they are constantly thinking about new aspects or changes to add to the site and how to implement them.
I really don't think the problem is that they're just too lazy to do anything; I think we just can't see the changes because what they're changing is important to them and their business as opposed to what's important to us (e.g., clothes for the virtual bird, a PM system.)
Honestly, I've seen duolingo as a pretty good starting place for learning a language. I didn't come here expecting to learn everything in the world. If you want more lessons, I suggest Memrise or even pick up a dictionary and create some Quizlets with new words that you learn! Quizlet has a couple of games that you can play, and though it'd be great to see something on Duo, too, you can control the words that you add to the Quizlet, which gives you even more freedom, in my opinion.
Additionally, there are many websites where you can chat with friends. Duolingo is a language-learning website. Yes, there is a discussion area and a way to message people on their profiles, but it's not supposed to be an IM Platform.
However, I do have to say: Duolingo, please make it easier to write answers to posts on computer! No matter how many paragraphs I start, it automatically lumps them up into one big paragraph, and nobody wants to read that!
Just doing one course gets a bit boring after a while once you've finished it (and truly learned the material in it, which may happen while you learn it, or like in my case, only after you've been practicing for a while after that). Some people really enjoy the collaborative translation part of the website called Immersion, and learn a lot more from that, but I never enjoyed it much and it's not even being offered to everyone at the moment.
But there are many ways of continuing to learn after one has finished one course: doing "the reverse course" (for example, English for French speakers after finishing French for English speakers), "laddering" courses (I did Spanish for French speakers after having finished French for English speakers -- it was a fun challenge, and good for my French, too), picking a completely different language to learn... Or one can just move on to other resources once one's covered what Duolingo has to offer.