2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Impressive coverage - ideal for dabblers!,
This review is from: 101 Languages of the World (PC) (CD-ROM)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
101 Languages of the World has been around for a while with an unrivalled offering of languages in a single product, and this latest edition installs quickly and easily, and runs without the CD-ROM after installation. You simply tick the languages you want available on your computer, and the relevant files are installed to your hard drive so you can tidy away the CD-ROMs (of which there are four!) and run everything with ease later on.
There are differing amounts of resources for each language, with the most popular languages supported by a wealth of material, while the less commonly taught / learnt languages having fewer. For example, Russian includes an impressive 24 conversational topics, while Scottish Gaelic has just 10. The resources themselves consist of passages and dialogues which you are completely interactive - click on a word to hear it spoken individually, read its translation, and see a translation of the whole sentence with the word in context. It's a very in-depth way to look at a text, and a good way to focus on vocabulary. It's probably not such a good way to learn a language from scratch, and you'd probably need a basic coursebook as well - but it's a really excellent way to get some extra practice and supplement your learning.
Each of the learning units comes with traditional learning / consolidation games like crosswords, jumbled letters and dictations. There's also the chance to record / compare your own pronunciation against that of a native speaker too. They're features which have been around in language learning software for some time, and the software is by no means cutting edge and can feel a bit old-fashioned and clunky at times, but it's solid, tried and tested stuff, and it works, which is what counts.
One nice extra feature is a set of reference help files on grammar in many of the languages included. Also, a handy customisable flashcards app is bundled with the software - 'Before You Know It' comes pre-loaded with flashcards in some very obscure tongues, but you can download / create your own sets too, so it's a nice resource for any language.
All in all, it's a really exhaustive set of resources for anyone interested in languages and having a dabble. There's certainly enough material to keep budding linguists happy for some time!