Some sites to translate are in English!
Hi! I thing some sentences/web sites would need a 'pre-processing' step to filter out the sentences in English!! What's even stranger is that I got points for German skills just by copying/pasting these sentences! It's a pity because I find translating sentences fun but the points I get give me a false sense of accomplishment and I now only focus on the lessons instead.
Nothing strange about this - it's the sort of thing that happens when you use computers to do something instead of people. Seems to me this is the whole point of Duolingo, to build a system which doesn't need processing by humans. I have only had occasional English sentences popping up in the translations I do, and I just copy them exactly. I would say the system still works fine if you do this. And if you only take the lessons, and don't do any translation, are you making a fair contribution to the system?
Actually even if the sites/sentences were chosen automatically by the system it should be able to recognize German sentences (language identification is something that has been around for decades now and works quite well) hence my idea of 'pre-processing'. You're right that the point is to contribute to the system, that's why I think this part should be improved to motivate people to contribute more. I'd love to hear more from the duolingo team about the sites translated, how they are chosen, the number of contributors, overall progresses, etc. Maybe users would feel more part of a 'community' if they has more info about what they contribute to and would feel even more encouraged to translate sites.
Mmmmm yes I am starting to agree with you. I'm finding more and more sites with English sentences on them, and I feel a bit of a cheat getting 5 or 8 skill points for just copying the sentence. But it looks like the Duolingo creators have taken on some of your suggestions in the recent changes on the site. I didn't know that computers can identify language, I thought you needed a person for that.