Hacking Chinese

A better way of learning Mandarin

Articles published in September 2012

  1. The importance of tones is inversely proportional to the predictability of what you say

    Tones are more important than people think. In this article, I discuss some of the reasons why some people insist that tones aren’t very important. My hope is that I deeper understanding of the problem will lead to a higher awareness of the importance of tones.

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  2. 12 songs to learn Chinese and expand your horizons

    This is my second article about Chinese music. The goal this time is to expand your horizons a bit and help you find music you like. You will probably not like all songs presented here, but it’s fairly likely that you will find at least a few!

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  3. Learning Chinese with StarCraft 2

    If you enjoy playing computer games, why don’t enjoy them in Chinese? I’ve played a lot of StarCraft 2 in Chinese and even if I don’t play any longer, I still watch several matches online each week, with live commentary in Chinese. I have learnt and still learn tons of Chinese from this and enjoy every minute. As the title implies, this article is about playing or watching StarCraft in Chinese and improve your Chinese at the same time.

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  4. Extending mnemonics: Tones and pronunciation

    Using mnemonics to memorise concrete objects is fairly easy, but how can we use mnemonics to remember abstract things such as tones and pronunciation? In this article, I expand my previous discussions of mnemonics and show how they can be quite powerful if you’re prepared to invest some extra time.

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