Right. There is energy and power in the Duolingo sentences. It seems to me they are not simply for amusement. It appears their placement is highly calculated, just like all the rest of the operation which is designed to instruct.
Over the years I bought books and I used flash cards, and various apps that were supposed teach me Spanish fast. And I tried using different dry and boring technically perfect Web sites. But I could not get any traction with any of that stuff. With Duolingo I am actually learning Spanish at my own pace and I am doing well. I am talking my time. After a few more catagories, I will be starting all over again. I do that after about every ten catagories. My plan is to get it all to sink in. Can't do that seeing how fast I can go.
+Eugene Tiffany. i agree - you think you've mastered a grammar rule and thenDL throws in a curve ball, to test if you really have got it. The pacing seems always pitched right, not too hard to frustrate you, but not too easy so you get bored. i wonder if DL times how long it takes you to answer, and analyses it to direct what questions it chooses next in your learning programme...? Or if you have a few correct answers with similar minor errors that hint at misunderstanding of grammar rules...? ...Either way, my touch typing has come on in leaps and bounds since starting DL. :-)
Timing could be helpful. Though I am using the Web site on tablet PC, though sometimes the app. And one types on a tablet normally a lot slowerthan than on a PC. Though yhe interval before one starts typing could mean something.
I can sometimes make really stupid errors. When I type in an answer the problem sentence will generally be off screen on my left, and all too often I can misremember what it said and type in "water" when the correct word was "milk" and vice versa which must throw DL really off!
I think they're just randomly translating strange sentences. It can be fun, try it for yourself. Try translating random snippets of weird lines from English songs into Spanish. I'll give a lingot to the first person who can name the song (and the group) that this is from:
"¡está haciendo ese andamio peligroso!"
Very often I have been able to locate the sources for the more awesomely weird sentences with a simple web search. The founder of Duolingo was one of the developers of the Captcha system and Duolingo is built on the same cut-and-paste principle copying content that fits a particular criteria from web sources. This method has the advantage of being super cheap, less predictably lesson-like, and that the phrases are actual, real-world uses.
That isn't to say that the sentences are more useful.
I agree. The purpose of Duolingo is not to learn phrases so we can be good tourists on our next vacation. The purpose is to become familiar with structure of language so that as our vocabulary builds we can understand and say sentences we never heard before. I think the sentences are often funny, but I have learned a lot more this way than I did when I memorized a few useful phrases
I agree, also. Peeps who want useful sentences to memorize for their practical advantages can buy phrase books. Then they will be able to say, and whenever needed, "I have a reservation." And, "Waiter, menu, please " Also, "Taxi!" But in Spanish, of course.
Or they could get really serious and buy a regular college textbook and learn how to say, "The pen on the table is of my aunt's"
I do 50 points in German every day to keep the tree gilded, and I'm working on finishing the Norwegian tree as well. I would like to finish the Portuguese tree at some point, but that's lower priority. I try to do at least 20 points in Dutch, Danish, and Swedish as well, but I'm not as regular in that. I do also try to work on my Esperanto and Irish as I fancy, but since both those trees are done, that's more hit or miss.
At some point I'd like to finish the Russian and Ukrainian trees as well. :-D
Haha true I hadn't considered that scenario. I didn't mean it was grammatically nonsensical or anything I just think it's funny when the example sentences are so wacky. Might be more useful if it's something we would say in everyday life rather than on 19th century homestead that's all. ^.^
Cavalier, Cavalry, and Caballo all come from the same root: caballus, the Latin word for horse. Think about it that way. Also, cebolla has the "o" in the middle, much like an onion has many layers. One other thing, when you think about el caballo, since the word is masculine, picture a large muscular stallion standing tall to imprint the word in your head, and la cebolla as a cute little onion. Tie an image to each word to make it more evocative.