Voiceovers for all words in Irish, like in other languages?
I would love to see Duolingo add voiceover pronunciations for all Irish words when clicked on, similar to French/German/Spanish/Italian etc.
Ideally, the speaker would be using the Caighdeán Oifigiúil so that most of us wanting to understand standard Gaeilge (like on RTÉ or TG4) can increase our listening competence in this and be able to rocket off in comprehension by understanding all sorts of audio media as Gaeilge.
Anyways, just a wish and a thought. Otherwise, Duolingo Team Irish has done a great job and I look forward to new improvements or additional lessons added, should they ever be made! GRMA
The issue is that, unlike other courses, Irish has a real speaker, that had to be paid for her recordings. It is, unfortunately, unlikely that every sentence and word will get audio, though every word is at least pronounced once.
It's also worth understanding that there isn't a standardized pronunciation. The purpose of the Caighdeán was to be a written standard, allowing people to read it in their own dialect.
That's interesting information about caighdeán oifigiúil that I didn't know. Galaxyrocker, are you saying that recordings for other languages are not real speakers? I didn't know that they could come up with such natural sounding speakers (as for Spanish or Italian, for example).
I am curious though why I am able to understand much of what I hear on shows like Cruinneog (an old radio program) or news presentations or other shows on TG4 or RTÉ. They seem to be pretty standardized pronunciations that seem, at least from my practice, to match the caighdeán pretty well. (Their pronunciations match what I have read about Irish pronunciation rules in general theory.) whereas the speaker on duolingo oftentimes does not match what I learned at all, and I am left scratching my head as how to ever make sense of how to pronounce the words, based on the speaker's rendition. There are some words that seem to have no relation whatsoever to the spelling.
There are two sets of Duolingo infrastructure; one is for Duolingo’s “core” courses, e.g. French/German/Italian/Portuguese/Spanish to/from English courses, which has the full set of features (e.g. Words and Immersion tabs); and the other is for courses that emerged from the Incubator, which don’t have all of the features that the core courses have. Some languages are not supported by the speech synthesis system that Duolingo uses; Irish is one of those, which is why the Irish course has recordings rather than speech synthesis, and the cost of producing and deploying those recordings is why the Irish from English course will never have recordings for all exercises.
But, if the audio files exist for each word within the skill, those files can be linked to multiple times, and played multiple times, giving the user full audio for each skill. It would be slightly choppy, perhaps, but that's far better than one or two instances of a words spoken per skill.
Words aren't recorded, sentences are. The Duolingo sentences aren't made up of individual words stitched together. That would be a completely horrible experience, because the stress and intonation of a word changes depending on where it occurs in a sentence, and the speakers mood.
I really recommend using teanglann.ie as the standard source too. It's based on the most comprehensive dictionary I know of for gaeilge, the foclóir Ó Dónaill. As for most languages, Google Translate does a very poor, rough translation of most sentences and phrases that are not completely basic. Better in my view to analyze each sentence yourself from the ground up.
Certainly not from a single speaker - many of the other languages I have practiced on Duolingo have more than one speaker. Ideally, there might be at least one female and one male speaker, as there are for French, Spanish, and German, for example.
I will fully support this statement.
Google translate is a real feat of engineering from a computer science perspective, but so was the 1903 flyer by the Wright brothers at the time from the perspective of the airspace pioneers.
What I intend to say with that is: "It's the kind of thing that has come a long way, and is showing potential, but it's still got such a long way to go, that you shouldn't depend on it."