So everyone is familiar with the old time-y phone calls, right? Remember those? It’s when you push buttons to call people. When you do it you hear the voice of another person (get excited)! You may have forgotten a midst your texting, tweeting, facebooking and iphone messages that only iphone people can do. I don’t know why I’m hating on the iphone all of a sudden. Okay, I’ll stop being sarcastic…
I could talk on the phone for fucking ever. I don’t know why, but I loved phone calls man. Something about hearing your friend’s voice just really gives me the happy feels. It’s probably why I got so into using VoiceIP programs (ventrillo, mumble, teamspeak, axon…) because it made gaming even better. But the game changed when my friend Darren introduced me to Skype. Holy shit. Skype is like the holy grail for procrastinating, talkative people like me. I can be on skype talking with friends for hours. HOURS I SAY! My yapping mouth aside, video chatting has become something that I really enjoy. It’s also something I’ve taken advantage of since moving away from all my close friends. It also comes in handy for getting to know new friends I made (though drawing my guesses of what I think they look like based on their voice seems to be a lot more fun, lol, it’s called trolling kids!).
Turns out, I’m not the only one who enjoys video chatting. Starbucks is getting in on the action as well! If you live in Washington or Nevada, there’s a good chance you can video chat your Starbucks “drive thru” order. Doesn’t seem like a bad idea to entice consumers.
I don’t think its a secret now, but I’ve been in a bit of a melancholy mood. The thing that cheers me right up is receiving skype calls. One of my close girlfriends has been paying me some skype visits recently, and I thought this would be an opportune time to introduce her to you guys. (I said I’d draw her at the beginning of this month) This is my lovely Naty Cakes:
Generally, when I skype with someone, my room (video backdrop) is an embarrassing mess. Add to that an over zealous attitude, an inexplicable burst of energy, and sloppy appearance – and that’s what its like to video chat with me. Don’t judge me. It’s just that since I didn’t leave the house to talk to you, I validate my laziness by telling myself that its okay to not look presentable.
I also happen to communicate with my pen pal over skype as well. Seeing as how he lives in the Netherlands, and I ran out of money to send post cards on a regular basis (I’m a terrible pen pal at this point ), it just makes things easier. We end up being weridos…
But back to video chatting…
I recently read an article on CNN by Jennifer Bixler, entitled “Video chat may help language learning!” A study, led by Sarah Roseberry, yielded results that children learned languages better when having an interactive teacher than those who did not. This active learning proved to be very effective. THIS GOT MY OLD GEARS TURNING! What if…what if I utilize the fact that I know people who speak other languages…and force them to teach those languages to me over skype??? I’M A GENIUS.
Time to learn German.
I have been using Livemocha, which is a free language training site, to start learning German. It’s a lot of fun, it incorporates games and exercises that you can have graded by people who speak the language fluently. The site works off of a sort of points system, each lesson costs a certain number of points. So in order to continue taking the lessons, you have to buy it with the points you have. In order to refill your points you have to help grade other people’s work in your language. Thus, helping the Livemocha community helps you gain points for yourself. It’s a great concept and I really enjoy it. But, I have to do a lot of repetition to make the new vocabulary stick.
I also bought a German language CD that I can listen to in the car. It was on sale, and I’d never tried learning a language solely through audio before, I thought why not try it. The CD includes songs that are sung in both German and English, so I’m not totally lost – but I do have to admit that the German is sometimes very fast…so I miss things and have to replay the entire section/lesson all over again. Once again, repetition will probably make it stick with me.
BUT, I told Svemmy about how I was trying to learn German, and he helped me learn the numbers 1 through 10 in like… half an hour. Seriously, I’m not kidding. It was hella efficient this way too because he immediately corrected my pronunciation and everything. DING DING DING! We have a winner! Active learning and video chatting is, once again, the best!
Man, video chatting kicks ass.