Learning a new language can provide life changing opportunities and enjoyment. There are so many reasons to learn a foreign language whatever your nationality; to improve employment potential, intellectual curiosity, make travel more enjoyable, sharpen cognitive and life skills, make lifelong friends, and many more. While it’s widely acknowledged that it’s easier to begin learning a second language at a tender age, starting a new language at any age is eminently worthwhile and life changing.
There’s a good selection of traditional materials and tools available to assist with language studies, such as language courses, grammar books, dictionaries, phrasebooks, and electronic translators. However, there are real benefits in using the latest technology to quicken the pace of learning. Online lessons and computer software are two popular ways of immersing yourself in learning a foreign language. They are the best alternative to actually living in a country where the language is spoken by the general population.
There is an extensive amount of open source computer software to help individuals learn a foreign language. We have identified the best of breed open source Linux software to make language acquisition fun, enjoyable, and a stimulating way of learning. These applications offer the opportunity to radically improve your life.
All of our medal winners are, of course, released under a freely distributable license and can be downloaded without charge.
|Language tools - Best Free Software|
|Tagaini Jisho is a superb Japanese vocabulary and kanji dictionary that aims at presenting results in a way that makes it easy to create connections in your mind and remember them.
License: GNU General Public License v3
|Anki makes remembering things easy. Because it's a lot more efficient than traditional study methods, you can either greatly decrease your time spent studying, or greatly increase the amount you learn.
License: GNU Affero General Public License, version 3
|Jargon Informatique is a front end for the French computing dictionary Jargon Informatique. The dictionary contains more than 10,000 words. It provides a user friendly interface that lets you find the words you want
License: GNU General Public License v2
This is a particularly difficult category to choose medal winners. If you’re not looking to learn Japanese and French, our gold and bronze medalists will be of little interest. So we’re going to make a 4th recommendation. We’re particularly drawn to Learning with Texts, a tool for language learning, inspired by Stephen Krashen’s principles in Second Language Acquisition, Steve Kaufmann’s LingQ System and ideas from Khatzumoto (AJATT – All Japanese All The Time). It lets you decide which languages you wan to learn.
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