When can we expect to have a Slovak course on Duolingo?
i would not expect it at all, ever. then i could be pleasantly surprised one day, if i lived long enough.
having able and willing volunteers is only a part of it, and far from the key one. the real key to adding a course to duolingo is for duolingo to want to add that course. then and only then will the applications from volunteers matter.
there is always someone applying. the czech course gets about one or two applications per week now. i am confident that there are enough applications for slovak/english in either direction right now to choose the usual two-member initial team from. just as there are more than enough applications for any number of other courses, including the directly competing english combinations with bulgarian and serbian (which would each involve twice the native population size and not suffer from a duolingo-perpetuated notion of mutual intelligibility with an already included language, czech).
what makes duolingo choose one language course over another? there is an official answer from the horse's mouth, but it is not entirely satisfying because it contains "just because!" in what may or may not have been meant as a joke but just fell flat. so take it from a slightly cynical observer:
the pro's for addition would include
- large affected population and expected number of users
- large additional number of duolingo users
- potential for publicity/buzz
and the con's
- the need to involve paid staff in modifying the existing infrastructure to make it work
- absence of assurances that the volunteer team will get it done
that last part has to do with mentoring the volunteers. again, don't expect the paid people to do it. is there a volunteer in the incubator, preferably from the same or similar language background, who has an incubator record of leadership and stability, who would take the new team leader under their wing? it is easier to become a new team leader if you are already inside for another reason, so the guarantor/mentor has something to base their assessment on.
duo has an easy way of projecting the benefits of adding slovak from the existing czech/english courses. i would see those benefits as very limited. small population, low added user expectation, no publicity. the costs would also be very low within the existing infrastructure: a mostly latin alphabet with a few weird accented characters. been there done that many times. and no incubator insiders with any standing.
hence let's not expect anything at all.
Na tvou odpověď už je má angličtina nedostatečná, ale pochopil jsem, že je to ještě mnohem složitější (a to už se mi zdálo sehnání schopných dobrovolníků jako velmi složité). Pozadí Duolinga se mi zdá podobně blízké jako mimozemšťané z Alfa Centauri...
O to větší uznání zaslouží, ti co pomohli na svět CZ kurzům.