https://www.duolingo.com/profile/annika_a

High Valyrian in the Incubator?!

https://incubator.duolingo.com/courses/hv/en/status

So it seems. And it's not even 1 April.

(I didn't find any previous discussions about this course actually being in the Incubator, only old discussions about whether it might happen -- apologies if this is old news.)

October 31, 2016

82 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjodni

What, even, is this?

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjodni

Personally, I have no desire to learn Finnish, but come on man! Duolingo, have you not heard a thing? I have never once heard anyone ask for High Valyrian or whatever, but Finnish, I mean, people ask for that language almost every day! This is almost a outright sign of disregard to the people who trust that their voices are being heard as they cry out for a chance to learn a language that means something to them. For the creator of this language, great job, you got a course, but I wouldn't be surprised if people refused to learn it because Duolingo refuses to listen to the demands of the people and let people build a Finnish course. Maybe there's more reasons, but it's been long enough, think so? Sorry for this rant, but I have been seeing people requesting FInnish since my first day on this website, and I think that it's about time for Finnish to join the ranks, a real spoken, useful, used language, that has a huge fan base.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jimnicholson

There seems to have been some sort of misunderstanding.

Duolingo is not a democracy.

It is a commercial entity, and can do whatever it believes is in its own best interests.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjodni

I know, I am aware of this, but I just had a little rant. I'm sorry, it was rash of me to post this without regard to the facts of the matter. I wish the creator of the course good luck with this course, and I apologize for criticizing Duolingo.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jimnicholson

Yeah, I am just happy that a group of people are getting a language course they wanted. I have no interest in the language myself.

If doing this helps Duolingo to survive, then we all benefit - even those, who for now, are not yet getting the course they want.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sjodni

At the end of the day, I think we can all agree on this. Even after our initial reactions, including mine, whatever will help Duolingo at the end of the day is what's best for all of us, and for Duolingo.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

There's only one course contributor so far...

...and it's David J. Peterson himself, the creator of High Valyrian, as well as Dothraki and others. Welcome to Duolingo, Dedalvs :)

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DrSwordopolis

This is really cool. I don't know if any other incubator coordinators have their own wiki pages.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/crispycraker

Chuck Smith, the head coordinator of the Esperanto for English Speakers course does, though it's rather short.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DrSwordopolis

Ah. I figured he might.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CaptainCultured

He's been on Duo for three years...

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

Ah, ok. His profile made it look otherwise.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

If this is true, I was hoping that Klingon would be an exception, but alas.

Good for all those who want to learn the language, but woe for those wishing for Finnish, Latin, Chinese, Old-English, Ancient Greek and more

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PotatoSanta

I thought Klingon, Korean and Swahili were unlikely, this just gives me more hope those other languages will turn up too

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

I would say that Korean and Swahili are at least logical, unlike Klingon.

However, I'd say that HV is more logical than Klingon

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LeviPolasak

I have to agree with the first part, korean and swahili are much more rational. I would rather join a website (if that's what they're looking for) if they had languages that people actually spoke. They should add languages like Navajo, Cherokee, Hawaiian, Galician, Basque etc.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zerr_

I believe they've mentioned before that Chinese and Japanese won't work on Duolingo, as there are no spaces in the language.

I don't feel like there's any major problem with the existence of the course, but I don't understand why they haven't added Finnish or Latin, which are highly requested and have a huge team of people ready to start work.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

I was just using examples of oft requested languages

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zerr_

Okay, just wanted to let you know.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArielBisso

Those languages are also highly demanded, but Duo sometimes has problems teaching them. For example, Mandarin Chinese and Japanese use a lot of characters and translating them to English is complicated, they are very complex and are hard to fit in the Duolingo format.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

what about Finnish though? possibly the most requested language - with no lack of contributors offering services

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

Another marketing tie-in, maybe, like the Klingon course?

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John00625

Game of Thrones language, possible that this is for publicity like the Klingon course(arguably) was.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/UserDeactivated

Isn't Game of Thrones on it's last season? Seems a little late for this now.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

I don't know if this is why, but there may have been legal reasons it couldn't be built until now. TV shows have a lot of control over the conlangs created for them.

For example, fans of David's Trigedasleng language used in The 100 have been asking David for various vocabulary words. But, because those words might show up in Season 4 (that is coming out next year), David was unable to share them.

(Info source: David's blog)

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/UserDeactivated

That makes sense. Although, at the same time, I would think giving the fans the ability to learn the language might make them more invested in the show. And convince other who are interested in language but hadn't watched the show a reason to try it.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

Fandoms tend to hold a lifeblood of their own, with potential to thrive long after their final seasons have aired.

It's a win/win for Duolingo. Remember, Duolingo's advertising budget is $0. This generates both free media and creatively reaches out to new populations of learners. Both are necessary for Duolingo to continue. :)

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AureliaUK

Maybe it's taken this long to make up enough words?

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

That is another possibility!

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/miacomet

There are two seasons left!

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PolyglotCiro

I wanted a Chinese/Japanese/Finnish course upset

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zerr_

I remember seeing a discussion made by one of the English for Japanese course creators on why Chinese and Japanese wouldn't work on Duolingo: there are too many possible translations for each sentence and no spaces between the characters. There are lots of other good websites that work for those, like Memrise.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/widle

I'm glad they are adding new languages. For a while it looked as if they switched to English for these or those speakers.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

They've said that they're focusing on making courses teaching English, among other things. They're hoping to make money from the Test Centre, and the test is only available in English so far.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/widle

I know. But it doesn't mean we can't hope for other things too. :)

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luscinda

I hope they're going to improve their English then.

By the way, is anyone else finding this 'related discussions' thing painful? It makes the measure far too narrow for the nested comments.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/no.name.42

It's also only available for some for speakers of some languages, as well.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NeonMoogle

Didn't see this one coming.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DonFiore

Maybe next time they should consider adding a language the contributors don't have to make up as they go https://www.duolingo.com/event/7583467790. Especially since they are not exactly pumping out courses, this being the 2nd course for English speakers and 7th overall this year.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DonFiore

To add to the first point, how much do I have to pay to Duolingo to get my own currently non-existent conlang here? Not that I currently have the money either.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/idshanks

I'd suspect how much you'd have to pay would strongly relate to how successfully your languages have demonstrably been implemented into notable works of fiction to date. If your language brings nothing of its own in terms of publicity/marketability, you better get saving! Otherwise, the value generated by the language in and of itself in terms of marketing would likely serve to make any such payment more affordable. :P

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DonFiore

I get that and I'm not denying that this probably brings some publicity but there's obviously a point at which money means more than demand so I was wondering how many millions a conlang by some schmuck would cost.

The same question could also be applied to natural languages, how much do we have to pay to get Finnish, Latin or another language that has contributors and no technical challenges into the Incubator? Or could we get a Native American language with less money because of its publicity value? Maybe they could start a couple of kickstarters and see which one gets the money first.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zzzzz...

I am sort of excited, although I would have preferred Quenya. :)

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TakizawaHideaki

which is inspired and influenced by Finnish :)

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vytah

I doubt we'll ever see any of Tolkien's languages. They have never been codified, language samples are all from different phases of language evolution, the vocabulary is scarce and grammar had to be reconstructed by fans.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew-Macdonald

Me too. I would love to learn a Tolkien language, especially since that man knew and created many languages.

October 31, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/syntaxosaurus

I agree that this could be good for Duo for marketing reasons.

Further, having the creator of a language work on a Duo course is a unique opportunity! I understand that some folks are frustrated about which languages do or do not show up in the incubator, but let's make him feel welcome and appreciated regardless.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ryannichols7

seriously, I know japanese/chinese/arabic likely would never work on duo, but finnish/afrikaans/bulgarian/icelandic/malay/slovakian all could work with no issues, and there are plenty of people willing to contribute to those. so why this, instead?

but maybe i'm just not a GoT fan. one of tolkien's languages would be cooler, as he was a pretty advanced polyglot

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vytah

I don't think there would be many problems with Arabic. Hebrew seems to work fine.

I agree about Chinese and Japanese though.

November 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ryannichols7

you're probably right, I took a dive into an arabic memrise course to see for myself. while I would struggle heavily with the language, I think it could work just fine on duolingo. and the arabic team does a fantastic job building courses from what I know...they've cranked them out pretty quickly!

November 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roman_Huczok

I'm always glad to see another new language in development, and since the course is being made by the person who invented the language, and new words are being actively developed, HV is perhaps in a somewhat better position than Klingon, which is reliant on a non-fluent community pulling words together from a language which, as far as I know, is not currently having new words added to it. There's also the simple fact that there's no 'lack of space' precisely in the incubator, as far as I know the dev of HV is not a fluent Finnish speaker. Nonetheless, it seems a somewhat strange choice to start this course given that Klingon is still under development. There are a lot of languages I would have preferred to have seen appear today.

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CallumRoy

Not to speak for Duolingo's judgement of potential contributors, but I think a factor of what languages it prioritises includes whether they can be sure the course will be well-staffed, and let us face it: David Peterson is probably going to make a very strong contributor. I guess we will see what is said in the Incubator updates?

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vytah

"What makes you qualified to teach this language."

"I invented it."

November 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ThePancakeHouse

Finnish literally has dozens of people that have sent in applications, thousands of people in the community support it, I mean, thet even have their own facebook page! I get that Finnish would be a hard language to instruct with 15 cases, and agglutination and all of that, but with dozens of applicants, it could totally be done! That would be more contributors than any other language so far! (As far as I'm aware.)

March 16, 2017

[deactivated user]

    Okaaay. Not what I was expecting. But it may well be interesting. I have always wanted to learn another conlang. Why not? I mean, it is David Peterson, after all. I think sharing a language learning platform with him is pretty cool.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/wyqtor
    • 1742

    Perkele.

    November 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/garpike

    Good to see that Duolingo is listening to its users and starting a course on such a much-requested, widely-spoken national language as High Valyrian, rather than choosing some little-known, fictional language that practically no-one has ever asked for like Finnish. Oh, wait a second...

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/scarcerer

    You have to be fair. Searching High Valyrian brought 55 results (4 of those in this thread) whereas Finnish brings over 7200 and Japanese almost 16000. That's still fairly close. Even on memrise where people can already learn these languages they are practically tied: 927 vs 35.2k (compared to several hundred thousand of the top courses).

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/scarcerer

    On a possibly related note, the powerful always seem to favour the 1%.

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

    It's true that Finnish and Japanese are much more requested that High Valyrian.

    Duolingo take no notice of how many posts there are in the forum, though. They've asked us to stick to the official language request post to request languages. They've said that when they're looking at which languages are most requested, that's where they look.

    November 4, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/scarcerer

    They don't specifically mention that post, the Help page simply says posts with lots of upvotes stand out more. But using that criteria doesn't help HV's case. Finnish, Arabic and Latin all have 1300+ votes whereas the only request for HV is at -3. That's way less than 1%.

    I know they don't say they will add whatever language has most votes but it probably doesn't help with people's frustration that the first language added after the help page quote was lifted to public awareness isn't even in the top 100 most requested courses.

    November 4, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

    The help file doesn't say anything about the official language request post, but the official language request post does. That's what the moderators have set up to centralise the language requests, so that Duolingo can get a realistic view of which courses are most wanted.

    ...but Duolingo have never claimed to be a democracy. User requests are one of the factors they take into account when deciding which courses to add, but they also consider which courses they have lots of good applicants for, where in the world they're currently trying to expand, and I assume several other factors.

    November 4, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

    I think that even Old English would be more requested, however, can't grumble as this is happening

    However, for all those who want to learn HV, this is good! :)

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/garpike

    I can't ever remember seeing anyone request HV. Perhaps they're being paid by HBO or similar.
    However, if Klingon is anything to go by, the series will be long finished by the time the course is ready, and the language itself will be a footnote in television history.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

    This time, they've got the language's creator as a course moderator. So, I have a hope that this course will make faster progress. Though, I imagine having more than one contributor would help things along. :)

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

    Money talks more than users, eh? :)

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

    If this is one of the things that keeps Duoling in business, then great.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HistoryCulture

    Yeah, only time will tell, I believe.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mr_Eyl

    I didn't realise that Star Trek was finished, what with the continual movies and the new series being released next year.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

    I think the Klingon course was originally supposed to be ready for Star Trek Beyond.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OliverBens1

    It should be ready for Star Trek Discovery :)

    August 14, 2017

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AureliaUK

    I've seen one or two requests for it, though when I've looked at the requesters' profiles they seem to be teenagers, perhaps even younger.

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/no.name.42

    Yes, all of those crowds demanding HV. I think there most be millions. Seriously though, I'm surprised they didn't add Dothraki first.

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vytah

    Luis wanted to do Dothraki, but he couldn't get permission from HBO.

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/no.name.42

    Huh, it feels like HBO would want people to be able to learn Dothraki. I guess that makes sense, though.

    November 2, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mr_Eyl

    ALFMF.

    October 31, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HalJam
    • 1658
    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luko.

    I revised the incubator and at least he's working! Vala azantys issa!

    November 1, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DerGoldmann

    He just finished the first lesson! Woot!

    November 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Usagiboy7

    Wow, that is amazingly fast! The Incubator set up has a pretty steep learning curve for new contributors from what I've heard from contributors to other courses.

    November 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hughcparker

    I suppose if anyone was going to get to grips with the tools fast, it would be a professional linguist and language creator :)

    November 3, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IViAAiVI

    how hard is it to learn high valyrian

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