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It’s Not The Language, It’s the Infrastructure

June 14, 2012
By

Ultimately, Japanese is an easy language to learn because it has such a well-developed learning support infrastructure — for regular as well as remedial users 1. The trick is tapping into the infrastructure.

That’s what SRS has always been about — for me, at least: how to exploit — leverage — the existing infrastructure, how to co-opt it for our use and benefit.

Not every language has a good infrastructure, even languages with massive user populations and healthy media output. Good luck finding Hindi or Cantonese dictionaries :D .

Having said that, all hope is not lost, even with languages that have less robust infrastructure; with some investment of time and resources, and tweaking of methods, you can create yourself a local infrastructure (=environment) that does the job of creating an “engineered inevitability” situation where you’re getting used to the language in a manageable, repeatable, inexorable way (cf: MCDs). So a system, basically. But one that’s actually good. One that actually works.

It’s not the language, it’s the infrastructure and how you orient yourself to it.

Anyway, just random thoughts…about your Mom…

Notes:

  1. This is AJATTspeak…verbal acrobatics intended to be helpful. Regular=normal/native. Remedial=L2/JSL=you

Tags:

I don't know, bro. I don't know if you're man enough to donate to AJATT. I mean, you can try...to click that button down there and follow the instructions, but...I dunno...

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4 Responses to It’s Not The Language, It’s the Infrastructure

  1. ahndoruuu on June 8, 2012 at 10:47

    Infrastructure and logistics.  Logistics is the most important part, though.  Infrastructure doesn’t matter unless its where you need it, when you want it there, i.e. the fact that there are plentiful and excellent Japanese dictionaries means nothing unless you have a convenient interface and habit to access them from.  The fact that Japan produces more anime than any other country (kind of a given really, but…bear with me)  doesn’t mean squat unless ones that trigger your interest are moved into your awareness and in front of your face at just the right moments.  When we AJATTeers start off learning a language, we’re basically starting a business.  We make the necessary connections to suppliers and form relationships with clients, and then from there it’s all a matter of making sure everything is where it needs to be, when it needs to be.  That’s what requires the effort.  Everything else is a side-effect.  I’m sure the logistics metaphor will break down somewhere, but I haven’t found it yet.  haha

    • Strawberry Vibe on June 15, 2012 at 02:47

      >When we AJATTeers start off learning a language, we’re basically starting a business.  We make the necessary connections to suppliers and form relationships with clients, and then from there it’s all a matter of making sure everything is where it needs to be, when it needs to be.
       
      Greatest. Explanation. Ever. :O

  2. blackbrich on June 16, 2012 at 00:41

    He just talked about your mom! You gonna take that?!!?!???!?!????!??!!?!??!.!??…?!!?

  3. Ken Seeroi on June 25, 2012 at 20:57

    Just replace “infrastructure” with “Internet,” and there you go.  Seriously, now that we have the internet, there’s a world of resources available.  People who learned Japanese 20 years ago were living in caves compared to where we are now.  There’s no barrier to learning Japanese in the 21st century.

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