Weekly Incubator Update: Tracking Progress from September 21st to September 27th

It is an exciting time for the Czech and Swedish courses who are nearing completion of their hatching effort. The IT<-FR is not far behind. There is more uniform progress across the board this week lifting the average progress number to 2.07. It is always good to see this number above two.

Edit: The latest numbers from Team Turkish are just in. And with their 2% progress the overall number jumps to 2.21.

Please remember to vote on the 4th Duolingo Poll organized by krispykracker. These polls are a great way to gauge the community's interest.

PHASE 1 Progress:

English for Czech - 89% | 91% | 94% | 96% (+2)

Swedish for English - 83% | 85% | 87% | 90% (+3)

Italian for French - 57% | 67% | 75% | 82% (+7) *

English for Thai - 71% | 73% | 73% | 73% (+0)

Russian for English - 39% | 40% | 40% | 40% (+0)

German for Turkish - 34% | 34% | 37% (+3)

Turkish for English - 18% | 18% | 21% | 23% (+2) ^

Hungarian for English - 18% | 18% | 19% | 20% (+1) ^

French for Portuguese - 12% | 14% | 17% (+3)

Esperanto for English - 4% | 9% | 15% (+6) *

German for Italian - 3% | 7% | 9% (+2)

Polish for English - 7% | 7% | 7% | 7% (+0)

Romanian for English - 4% | 4% | 6% | 6% (+0)

Ukrainian for English - 0% | 1% | 1% | 3% (+2)

Average Weekly Progress: +2.45% | 2.60% | 1.87% | 2.21%

* This week's joint Leader Extraordinaire
^ The Turkish & Hungarian teams' progress is per their own calculation.

Progress Visualized:

Here are the updates from the contributing teams posted during the last week:

FrantzBG from Team IT<-FR wrote 4 days ago:
Edit: I had initially put the team as IT<-ES.


Hi everyone,

just wanted to tell you that I am a little bit busy this week so I am just getting to know how the incubator works by reading all the material stuff :P

See you very soon, Francesco

amuzulo from Team Esperanto wrote 3 days ago:

10% and counting...

We've been hitting Duolingo hard to get the beta course to you as soon as we can! This weekend we weren't able to get much done, because Swdreamk33 was busy the whole weekend and I was teaching an intense intermediate Esperanto course in Berlin. Despite the weekend, we've already completed all the lessons up to the first checkpoint including: Basics 1, Basics 2, Phrases, Accusative, Langs 1, Colors and Plurals. Past the checkpoint, we've also finished Animals and Possessives and have started working on Food, Countries, Clothing and Infinitive.

When we get about twice as much done, we'll start inviting more contributors to join us. If you speak English and Esperanto very well and have time to help out, please apply at We look forward to seeing our team grow soon!

amuzulo, nice to learn that you teach Esperanto outside Duolingo as well! Great progress inspite of your two member team being so busy.

Anrui from Team Swedish wrote 6 hours ago:

With about 300 words left to add, we are approaching Beta!

It has been a long journey, but we feel very proud and satisfied with what we have achieved. We have taken into consideration all the words you wished for and you will find many of them in the final course. While you are waiting for the Beta course, you should also check out the new course description for Swedish. We at least like it a lot better than the previous one! See you soon in Beta!

Nitram15 from Team Hungarian wrote 3 hours ago:

Progress Update 2014/09/28

Hi everybody,

Team Hungarian here, I hope you've been waiting for this update. :) We have is a LOT to tell you this week.

First of all, we are hiring again. We haven't yet decided who to invite as there are several excellent choices to choose from.

Secondly, we decided to follow a similar approach to release our course to the Turkish. A few weeks ago Team Duo made us available to do something called "Tree versioning". This means that we can create a second course (Tree 2.0) into which we can add new skills, rename/replace/move existing ones, add new words and so on! Pretty cool.

Now we don't want you to wait for an eternity until our course is fully finished... That said we would like to release our course into beta pretty soon. As you already know we base our course on a book which splits Hungarian grammar into 25 chapters. We already finished 8 of those chapters, and now we plan to release the course when we reach 10 completed chapters. Later, we would add the remaining 15 chapters and at the end of the day, the course will have all the 25 chapters, covering the whole Hungarian grammar.

This however, has some "side effects" on the way we calculate percentages and words. The best would be to set up two percentages, one which is the "percentage until beta" and one that is the "percentage until completion". We've been reporting the second one which was 19% last week. This week, the "percentage until completion" (let's call it PUC) is 20%. The "percentage until beta", or PUB appears to be 55%. (calculated as completed words/2000 (number of total planned words) *0,66)

Some other, miscellaneous data: We are working on Chapter 8 (out of 10 until beta, and out of 25 until completion). We've completed 1680 words so far, which is a +64 words growth compared to last week.

So that's all for now, see you next week!

Team Hungarian

PUC & PUB - nice things to remember :)

Thanks for the timely and regular updates, Nitram15! Also good to see the face behind all the goodness :)

Also, here is more expression of enthusiastic support for the Hungarian course!

jitengore from Team Hindi wrote a few minutes ago:

Beta Week 23: Course progress

डुओलिंगो के प्यारे साथियों!

पिछले सप्ताह डुओलिंगो की टीम ने हमारी हिंदी टीम (अन्य टीमों के साथ) को कुछ साधन उपलब्ध कराएँ हैं जिनकी मदद से हम पाठ्यक्रम के उन क्षेत्रों को जान सकेंगे जहाँ हमारे विद्यार्थी कठिनाई महसूस कर रहे हैं। इनकी सहायता से हम अधिक सक्रियता के साथ पाठ्यक्रम को बेहतर बनाने में सफल होंगे ताकि बीटा चरण जल्द से जल्द पूरा किया जा सके।

Dear Duolingoers!

Last week the Duolingo team has made available to our Hindi team (and other teams as well) a few tools to help us understand the areas of our course that are confusing for our learners. This allows us to be proactive in improving the course experience and take the course past beta.

साप्ताहिक पाठ्यक्रम प्रगति - Weekly Course Progress.

TL;DR We are hoping to get three new courses in the beta phase next month. And it will be great to see small breakthroughs for the courses that have remained on the same progress number for a few weeks!

The next update is expected on Sunday, 5th of October at 4:00 pm UTC.

Previous Update 14-Sep to 20-Sep

September 28, 2014


The Esperanto team rocks.

I am curious about what's going on with Russian though. I don't know how to study Russian on my own so I was hoping to use Duolingo's version, but they've been stalled for a quite a while now.

September 28, 2014

I think they're dealing with the RUS>ENG beta course, and probably the RUS>GER as well. I'd love to see it soon, too. Until then, I've been learning in bits and pieces with both Memrise and Pimsleur courses, and doing a bit of the reverse course on the side. Still, it would be amazing to even have a bit of the ENG>RUS course to work from!

September 29, 2014

I can't wait for the Russian course either! Shady_arc (the sole active Russian course contributor these days) had previously said that progress would pick up now that a side project was out of the way, but it seems the opposite has happened.

October 1, 2014

I would just like to know WHAT they're doing, even if they're not working on the course, just so I know it's going to come eventually. It seems like they all just disappeared and got tired of it.

October 1, 2014

Romanian... :(

September 28, 2014

Thanks, Jiten, per the norm! Swedish has hit 90%...almost there!

In regards to the new Hungarian developments, I wonder if this is a case-by-case basis, or could possibly become an option for other courses that are more complicated?

Edit: Thanks.

September 28, 2014

Each and every course has the possibility to do so AFAIK.

September 28, 2014

I'm very, very happy for this development. It means more courses can be started sooner for more people, and languages with complicated grammar, such as Russian :D, can be learned earlier at a gentler pace. I definitely feel the push to rush to the end of my trees, which will be helped a lot if they're released in stages and not all at once.

September 28, 2014

Well done to Team Esperanto, they're making fantastic progress. I'm really excited for their course and its great to see them racing along. I think Esperanto on Duolingo will be a great Christmas present!

September 29, 2014

If you're lucky, maybe even a Zamenhof Day present! ;)

Seriously though, at its current pace I see it being out in Dec or Jan... :)

September 29, 2014

In Australia we have an Esperanto summer school in Melbourne in the first week of January. I am hoping to be able to show the participants the Duolingo Esperanto course!

September 29, 2014

That would be great! If the time zones and schedules work out, I could even do a Skype interview live with your class if you want to talk about Duolingo in more depth this summer. :)

September 30, 2014

Go Swedish!

September 28, 2014

Hi Jiten, thanks as ever for this excellent update! Could you tell us a little bit more about the tools Duolingo has recently introduced "to help us understand the areas of our course that are confusing for our learners"? It sounds fascinating.

September 28, 2014

Hi ajcee7, in the past it was all guess work as to which areas of the course need refinement.

Now, we see a caution sign (see below) telling that the learners are struggling with a sentence. A few of the other recent enhancements can be seen on the right side of the image below. There is now an easier way to play the audio. Also, the course moderators can now also remove a sentence from the course. Earlier we had to request the course mentor for this action.

In the example I chose, the sentence is "I am a man" which is part of "Basic 1". The reason learners appear confused with this simple sentence is because in the first few skills, the users tend to write Hindi using the Roman script. Once they get the pointers about the tools to write using (the beautiful) Devanagari script, such user reports stop coming for the later skills.

September 29, 2014

Also, could you tell us which areas were more confusing, not just about the tools. I am a little interested in which parts of grammar differ the most (or are the least non-intuitive from the other language's perspective). I haven't planned on learning Hindi, but you are so communicative that I'd be tempted by your reverse course.

(I also look forward to the reverse course because I think your reverse course would be really good for A/B tests on how Latin-alphabet users learn other alphabets.)

September 28, 2014

You make a great point about the A/B tests for learning newer scripts. Isn't internet wonderful to make such experiments deliver results in real-time?!

Perhaps in a future post, I can dwell upon the areas of learning English that are the toughest for the Hindi speakers from a high level perspective. The articles 'a, an and the' are definitely a sore point. Hindi does not use these articles. If you catch my writing missing a few articles, you know where that miss is coming from :)

Thanks (and lingots) to you and all the others who have asked great questions and/or engaged everyone in a nice discussion.

September 29, 2014

I would love to see a post regarding areas of English that are most commonly missed by Hindi speakers. I've also compiled a list of common mistakes from my experiences in teaching English to Hindi speakers, so it'll be interesting to compare notes!

I concur on the articles being a common issue. In "Few of the other recent enhancements can be seen", "Few" should be "A few" since "few" means "not very many" whereas "a few" means "a portion" or "some".

I haven't checked out the Hindi course but articles would be a very useful lesson if not already there!

October 1, 2014

Hi ptoro, thanks (and lingots) for the reminder about "a few" vs "few". Corrected :)

The English for Hindi course used the standard English tree and that did not have a special lesson on the 'articles' at the time of building our course. There was no customization possible either. But it is a great idea to have a skill designed for the articles.

October 2, 2014

Thanks team Esperanto! I was never planning to learn more than one language but this is just too good to miss!

September 29, 2014

Thanks, Jiten :) Yay! Swedish is sooooo close!

September 28, 2014

Brilliant at keeping us informed as usual thanks!

September 28, 2014

Thanks Jiten for the update :) I see you added 20% (PUC -- percentage until completed) for our course, wise choice. It shows greater consistency doing so. However, given that the visualization says "Duolingo Phase 1 Progress Visualized" it might be more appropriate to add that 55% (PUB -- percentage until beta), and then later follow our (and the Turkish team's) progress on another(?) chart. I honestly don't know what the best option would be.

September 28, 2014

I quite don't know, Martin! The watchers would really like to know when the course is ready for them to consume, so whichever is the closest to the true number should work.

September 28, 2014

Well, 55% is closer to arriving to Beta, while 20% is closer to finishing the course... I think (most) people here want the former...

September 28, 2014

I see, yes we would like to see the run down to the beta phase. Unless there are any changes, I can use the PUB % beginning next week!

Forewarning to all: you will see a jump in the overall progress number next week and you can easily foretell which team will show up as the "leader extraordinaire" :)

September 29, 2014

So the course is 45% until Beta and 19% until completion (in other words until all 25 chapters are completed)?

September 28, 2014

Let's say that the whole "journey" to Beta is 100%. Then we stand at 55% of the journey. If we say that a similar "journey" to completion is 100% as well, we would say that we have already gone through 20% of the journey. There is still 45% and 80% left, respectively.

September 28, 2014

Ohhh I understand now :)

September 28, 2014

If you really planning to add 25 chapters, then it seems prudent to either start adding more volunteers, or work out some plan. It seems highly likely that given the workload, it will very quickly become too much to handle. Essentially this will mean, maintaining the "Original" course, the reverse course, adding new content for reverse, and handling the thousands or perhaps millions of error reports, and dealing with some bugs.

It may be very hard not to get distracted by so much.

P.S. @ jiten, hideki showed a new chart showing the Japanese team's progress:

September 28, 2014

Of course we know that, and that's exactly why we are hiring, as stated in the update.

September 28, 2014

Thanks for picking up the story from hideki san :)

September 29, 2014

Russian :(

September 28, 2014

Thank you Jiten! Every Sunday afternoon/evening I'm really excited to read your clarifying summary! (And I feel honoured by you mentioning my post ^^)

September 28, 2014

Thanks for your kind words, David! That was a nice reminder from you to everyone involved to start thinking about the TTS for Hungarian. And the news from Nitram15 was even more welcoming. I look forward to a human voice teaching me Hungarian in the near future!

September 29, 2014

Go Team Czech! :)

September 29, 2014

Yay, Czech! I am definitely going to try it out until the opposite course for English speakers comes out. :)

September 29, 2014

I guess I should know this, but does anyone know where I can find the new course description for Swedish?

September 28, 2014


September 28, 2014

That's great

September 29, 2014

Thanks, Jiten, for your faithful reporting.

Am very curious to know the official DL perspective on the Hungarian team's suggestion of building the course to beta and further developing the course to completion. In particular is this a nod towards the addition of more substance and advanced levels in all other courses? Might French, for example, some day have 3,000 words as well as more developed practice of advanced grammar?

September 30, 2014

Nice work teams!

September 30, 2014

Thanks Jiten for the update,

Dou you know someone around here who could make more languages for dutch speakers? Like German or French... That would be cool! (Every language is oke :))

Please, someone!

October 1, 2014

it's so great to see such a progress from Polish team.. this became so annoying to see no further results every week.. sorry, but I'm so disappointed..

October 5, 2014
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