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Language Matters by Diplomatic Language Services
20 minutes | Jun 30, 2021
Vernacular Reality: Designing Experiences with Doug North Cook
In this episode of Vernacular Reality, listen in on our conversation with Doug North Cook, immersive media program coordinator and professor, and lead instructor at Falling Water's Immersive Design Residency. We discuss all aspects of designing immersive software, including the inspiration for it, the execution of it, and how to optimize user experiences - especially for learning. Enjoy!
33 minutes | May 6, 2021
Vernacular Reality: Weird Interfaces with Jim Toepel
In this episode of Vernacular Reality, Blythe and Sean talk with Jim Toepel, design/product manager working with "weird interfaces" (from VR to Rock Band). They discuss the formative experience where they met, how one's relationship to software changes when moving our bodies in new and different ways, and all the benefits of engaging with immersive software. Enjoy!
38 minutes | Mar 17, 2021
Vernacular Reality: VR for Training with Jordan Higgins
In this episode, Blythe and Sean sit down with Jordan Higgins, XR Designer and adjunct faculty at the George Mason University School of Art! The two VR experts discuss their experiences working with AR/VR in general and for training, plus exciting innovations in the industry. Enjoy!
34 minutes | Dec 16, 2020
Vernacular Reality: Inspiration for the DLS VR Program
In this episode of Vernacular Reality, Blythe and Sean discuss a variety of virtual reality apps that Sean has used in the past, the features he likes about each, and how each program has influenced his VR work at Diplomatic Language Services. From exercise to meditation, you might be surprised at just how much inspiration our language learning program took from other apps. Enjoy!
25 minutes | Nov 18, 2020
Ep. 15 Somali - If You Can Read It, You Can Speak It
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with native Somali speakers and DLS instructors, Aweis and Arale. They discuss various aspects of the Somali language including the origins of Somali and where it is spoken now, the different dialects, and the ease at which it is to speak Somali if you are simply able to read. Sit back and enjoy this fascinating episode about the Somali language!
16 minutes | Aug 19, 2020
Vernacular Reality: Different Perspectives on Language Learning with VR
'What if VR makes me feel sick?' 'Will my instructor be with me in this virtual environment?' 'What makes your application so special?' These are all potential perspectives from students that we address in episode two of Vernacular Reality. Listen in as Blythe, Chris, and Sean tackle perspectives that students may have regarding adding a virtual reality component into their language training, discuss why implementing VR makes sense for the individualized language training that is at the core of our business, and why this makes sense for the language learning industry in general.
19 minutes | Jun 23, 2020
Vernacular Reality: Intro to Language Learning with VR
Welcome to Vernacular Reality, the VR-focused extension of our podcast Language Matters! In this episode, our host, Blythe, sits down with DLS staff Sean McBeth (Immersive Software Developer) and Chris Bellas (President) to discuss what they are doing to bring virtual reality into language learning at Diplomatic Language Services, why they decided to do so, and what we can expect.
18 minutes | Jan 8, 2020
Ep. 14 Albanian - 'I swear on my life, I swear on my soul, I swear on my food...'
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with native Albanian speaker and DLS Registrar, Alma, and DLS Recruiting Coordinator, Charlie, who lived in Kosovo for two years while teaching English as a foreign language. They discuss various aspects of the Albanian language including the differences between the two dialects, mastering Albanian clitics and the 36-letter alphabet, and the interesting differences between the north and south. Sit back and enjoy this fascinating episode about the Albanian language!
20 minutes | Oct 2, 2019
Ep. 13 Turkish - Don't Be Parsley!
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with native Turkish speaker, Zeynep Gur, and DLS Project Manager, Jessica, who lived in Turkey for five years while studying the language. They discuss various aspects of the Turkish language including the change of the Turkish alphabet in the 1920s, the importance of vowel length, why it’s much harder to interrupt people when speaking Turkish, the importance of the informal ‘you’, and why the Harry Potter books are much shorter when translated in Turkish! Sit back and enjoy this fascinating episode on the Turkish language!
20 minutes | Jun 7, 2019
Ep. 12 Romanian -Latin Island in a Slavic Sea
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with Alina and Raluca, two native Romanians. They discuss the ins and outs of the Romanian language including grammar, words imported from other languages, Romanian proverbs, and you’ll even learn a children’s poem that will teach you how to roll your R’s! Sit back and enjoy this fun and educational episode on the Romanian language
20 minutes | May 1, 2019
Ep. 11 German - Herbstbergradfahrttour!
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with Christina and Carrie. Christina is a native German speaker and Carrie is a German student who has been speaking since a young age. They discussed the various aspects of the German language. You will learn about the German writing system, German grammar, compound words, borrowed words, and some popular German sayings. Enjoy this educational episode!
24 minutes | Mar 7, 2019
Ep. 10 Korean - Number One Shame Cover!
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with one native Korean speaker, Go Eun, and a Korean student, Mindy, to discuss the various aspects of the Korean language. Learn about the differences between North Korean and South Korean, the rich history involving a beloved King, and the difficulties of learning Korean. Sit back and enjoy this educational Korean podcast!
22 minutes | Feb 6, 2019
Ep. 09 French - It's Alive!
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with two native French speakers, Kevin and Vincent, to discuss the various aspects of the French language. You will learn how the government regulates the French language keeping it from being overly influenced by English, the difficulties non-native French speakers have when learning the language, and how far and wide this language is spread throughout the world. Also, we apologize for the low volume of our recent podcasts. We are updating our systems and installing new recording equipment that will fix these issues. Please let us know if you have any requests regarding languages or topics for future podcasts by messaging us on our Facebook page. Thank you, and enjoy.
20 minutes | Dec 19, 2018
Ep. 08 Pashto - We Call It a Mouse!
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with two native Pashto speakers, Roshana and Faraidoon, to discuss the various aspects of the Pashto language. Learn about the English influence on the Pashto language, the difficult grammar, the different dialects, and the inspiring poetry and proverbs that enrich the culture. Sit back and enjoy this educational Pashto podcast!
20 minutes | Oct 2, 2018
Ep. 07 Japanese - How Many Ways Can You Count Animals?
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with two native Japanese speakers, Yuriko and Rie, to discuss the Japanese language. Specifically, details regarding katakana, kanji, and hiragana, complications in relation to word order, common difficulties native English speakers face when learning Japanese, and the honorific system. Sit back and enjoy this educational episode about the 9th most spoken language in the world.
21 minutes | Sep 12, 2018
Ep. 06 Hausa - Funky B, Funky D, and Funky K
In this episode of Language Matters, Molly sits down with two native Hausa speakers, Ousmane and Hausa, to discuss various nuances of Hausa culture and language, like the subtle differences in pronunciation ofthe same letters. Then we are joined by one of their students, Ty, to chat about the difficulties native English speakers face when learning Hausa. Sit back and enjoy this “funky” episode about one of west Africa’s lesser known, yet far-reaching languages! *Explicit language at end of episode
19 minutes | Jul 31, 2018
Ep. 05 Are "paisan" and "capisc'" Really Italian?
In this episode, we talk with two native Italian speakers, Simona Westlund and Simona Gentile, about how Italian differs from other romance languages and the variations of the language across different regions of the country. We then trace the Italian origins of terms commonly used in English, such as “paisan”. And as always, we leave you with a discussion on interesting Italian idioms or phases. Capisc'?
18 minutes | Jul 11, 2018
Ep. 04 Persian Farsi, Dari, and Tajik – One Language or Three?
In this episode of Language Matters, we delve into a complex and sensitive group of languages, including Persian Farsi, Dari, and Tajik. Native Dari speaker born in Afghanistan, Faraidoon Saadat, joins us along with Persian Farsi speaker and Iran native, Fatemeh Towhidi. Together, we discuss the regions in which the various languages are spoken and how the writing systems differ. We then compare and contrast Persian Farsi and Dari, specifically, discussing perceptions of the differences among varying groups of speakers and how aspects of the two languages can be found in others!
16 minutes | Jun 14, 2018
Ep. 03 Oh Krup! Gendering in Thai
In this episode of Language Matters, we are joined by two native Thai speakers, Pim Tovanabutra and Suwitcha Narksuk, to discuss the Thai writing system. Most interestingly, we cover non-phonetic symbols in writing and how to write words borrowed from other languages. We also compare the various, mutually intelligible dialects across Thailand. Finally, we cover the five tones specific to Thai. And, as always, don’t forget to stick around until the end for our guests’ favorite Thai phrases!
24 minutes | May 2, 2018
Ep. 02 Chinese languages and learning how tones work!
In this episode of Language Matters, we sit down with two native Mandarin Chinese speakers, Christina Hayes and Cecilia Gou, to discuss Chinese writing systems. Specifically, we cover individual written characters, how Chinese speakers associate sounds and meaning to the characters, and how the characters are typed on electronic devices. We then compare the “standard” Mandarin to other Chinese dialects. And it wouldn’t be a true discussion about Chinese dialect without learning how tones work! Finally, we leave you with some parting words as our guests break down their favorite Chinese phrases!
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