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Review "Power Japanese"

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Review "Power Japanese"

Postby KINGZ » Tue 07.25.2006 9:15 pm

Hi everyone, ;) I wanted to post review of the software I have been using to learn Japanese. Before I start I would like to say all information in the software can be found right here on TheJapanesePage.com and its links for FREE. What I'm reviewing is the lesson plan and their process of learning they use.

Let me start off with myself. As Japanese is my third language I have studied (beginner) I have found it very easy to pick up bad habits and extremely difficult to get rid of them. So I usually watch closely what I study and how I study it to reduce the pit falls. On to the review.

Review: Section 1 of 4 for Power Japanese, created by Transparent Language. Prices Range from $50.00 to $75.00. The base program itself has been around for about 10 years now from what Clay has told me. They have made a few updates over the years, most recently the 64bit system update. (I bought from a vender that had an old version, so I had to send my copy back to get the 64bit version to work on my computer) After using this software for a month+, I have come to find that it provides an extremely effective lesson plan without having to call upon special memorization or to fall back on English to understand what you are reading, hearing or saying.

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As shown above, the program covers these areas and more. Almost everything is interactive in this program. Click on any Item listed above and the software would give further information on the subject.




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The program starts you right off learning the Hiragana after a few pages of explaining the lesson plan and a few other bits of useful information. You go through each set of Gyou one set at a time. (note the error at the top left of above picture "GYO") The one thing this software tries to stay totally away from is Romaji. Each Hiragana can be click to play the sound file and show how to write the hiragana (Writing Pad). There are always a few notes and bit of information with each Hiragana.




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After every set of Gyou there follows a basic drill of trying to pronounce 10 words with the Gyou you just finish along with all the other Gyou you have done up to that point. Each word you can see the meaning and play the sound for that word. The one thing here that would have been nice to see is a voice reconization to give you feed back on your pronunciation.

SIDE NOTE: After Writing this I did find that the software does have a Voice Recorder to compare you pronunciation to the software.




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There is always one more drill that follows each set of Gyou. Here you go over the 10 worlds that you went over in the first drill of each Gyou. The objective here is to hear the sound and spell the worlds using hiragana (no keyboard is used as to the program stays away from Romaji) You have the option here to see the meaning of the word, replay the sound, Scramble Keyboard (which is nice to make sure you are remembering the Hiragana and not the location of it on the screen) and the option to skip a word to the next. The on screen keyboard only allows the option of Hiragana that you have covered the material on. Note the Lower Right of the keyboard, Options there for [color=red]Daku-on & Han-Daku-on & Yoo-on, and Soku-on. Further along in sections one you are doing complete sentences. They have a hiragana list that can fill up the screen.[/color]




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Every so often there is a game (there are a few different games) to reinforce what you have learned. This one here, plays the sound and you find the Hiragana. Some of the games are Speed test where it shows you a hiragana and you have to match it to the right location on a blank hiragana chart and scored how fast you find it. Another type of game is where you play memory and you have to match all the Gyou it belongs to or DAN.



Here are a few other Screen shot of Section 1 of 4 of Power Japanese. Through out they have other bits of useful information and drills to reinforce what you have learned and to keep it interesting.

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This software has almost everything interactive, and on top of that, almost everything written in Japanese can be clicked to hear the pronunciation of the word or sentence. I believe there are well over 1,500 spoken words and sentences in this software package.
There is a few add-in that work out side of the program too. IE:
Hiragana chart
Voice Recorder
Romaji Guide
Katana Guide
Kana Editor


For me this software package graphics are a bit out dated, but the content, lesson plan, and teaching styles is sweet to say the least. As I said before this content can be found on the net for FREE, what you are really paying for here is a lesson plan and a good one at that too.

Just an update on Sections 2 of 4, they start working into more and more grammar, vocabulary, structure, more or less everything is starting to get wrote in hiragana.

If everyone liked this review, when I finish section 2 ill post a review on that part too.

Pleasa fill fre tu shoot hols n my speling and gramerr. :o


;):D
Last edited by KINGZ on Tue 07.25.2006 9:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby Dimitree » Tue 07.25.2006 9:35 pm

I don't mind that there are no 3D graphics and stuff but what i don't like is the colors :[ i can't help it :/ they chosed the most not appealing colors ever and put them together ;)
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby kanadajin » Tue 07.25.2006 10:15 pm

That loooks great! But I have to agree with Dimitree.. Ugly colors!
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby KINGZ » Tue 07.25.2006 11:32 pm

Dimitree wrote:
I don't mind that there are no 3D graphics and stuff but what i don't like is the colors :[ i can't help it :/ they chosed the most not appealing colors ever and put them together ;)


I never notice it that way, but you do have a point. lol, To a point I did dumd down the graphics a bit for a faster load time on the forum, and for some reasons the shades changed a tad, but thats about the color of it. :)
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby nikoniko » Tue 07.25.2006 11:58 pm

(^.').. coooooooool
jyanken pon!! --+-*---+--*-- d(^-^)-o v-('o' )b
http://nat-yipun-daisuki.hi5.com
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby ashitaka » Wed 07.26.2006 12:26 am

Nice review........... thats my whole comment........ now im going to buy this and not a new USB flashdrive.

Ugly colors but great programe.
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby KINGZ » Wed 07.26.2006 9:37 am

oh Guess I should have included this in the review, they do not cover any Kanji other than some basic information about them. ;)
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby kanadajin » Wed 07.26.2006 10:22 am

then to me.. It's not worth over $10 ;)
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RE: Review "Power Japanese"

Postby KINGZ » Wed 07.26.2006 12:30 pm

I was a bit disappointed :( when I found out that Kanji was not used in the software, but must remember this is a Beginner to Upper Beginner package, it even starts to touch on a Lower Intermediate lvl. It gives you a good foundation. I’m Just now starting on my White Rabbit Press Kanji Vol 1. It would have been better if the software had them in there, but it seems to be working ok learning the two at the same time.

The software covers you to lvl 3 and does a good job of starting you in lvl 5 but misses lvl 4.


Thejapaneseshop.com lvl. Uses this chart.

Beginners
1 - No hiragana or katakana yet (Mostly hiragana and katakana learning books and resources)
2 - Mastered hiragana, some kanji and beginning grammar (beginning textbooks, beginning grammar)


Upper Beginner
3 - Basics down pat, need simple readers and more grammar (beginner readers, basic grammar books)
4 - Knows 300 or so kanji (Secondary textbooks, specific grammar helps, manga)

Lower Intermediate
5 - Past a breakthrough point "I can speak Japanese" but need help progressing further. (books on specific grammar, more advanced readers, electronic dictionaries)
6 - Somewhere between JLPT 3 kyuu and 2 kyuu (emphasis on kanji and advanced grammar)

Upper Intermediate
7 - Knows the first 1000 or so kanji, advanced grammar and conversation (advanced kanji books)
8 - Can read most Japanese but struggles with newspapers (JLPT 1 kyuu books)

Advanced
9, 10 - Highly advanced skills; approaching or passing 2000 jouyou kanji
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