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German: massive input in Berlin

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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2832 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 145 of 295
17 June 2014 at 11:26am | IP Logged 
Gemuse, tristano, Cavesa: Wow. Thanks for all the kind words. It's a bit like having a birthday. :)

Evita wrote:
I'm awed by the number of books you have read in German. I think it's amazing! Excellent work.


It's easier when you are only learning one language. :p

My current aim is to get to 25000 pages and 1000 movies by sometime by next summer. I think by then my German will be approaching a more useful level (i.e., I can go for a job interview).

I really believe that comprehensible input works, but you have to be willing to put in a lot of input, which meant for me giving up English movies/tv/books/newspapers over the last two years. Doing that really made a difference. If I could give up English Internet - I'm looking at you HTLAL! - things would go even faster.

Edited by patrickwilken on 17 June 2014 at 11:32am

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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2832 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 146 of 295
03 July 2014 at 9:50am | IP Logged 
Monthly Progress: June 2014

Things were a bit slower in June compared to May. We moved house in the middle of the month, which was distracting and without furniture it's surprisingly hard to concentrate on language study. In addition, I made the (retrospectively) stupid decision to upgrade my computer from Kubuntu 13.10 to 14.04, which resulted in me having to completely rebuild my system, which is still not back to where it was before I started. :( This was particularly problematic for German study as I rely on the computer both for my ebooks (everything is stored in a Calibre library) and movies (nearly all the films I see nowadays are streamed either from Maxdome or Mubi).

Now that we've bought some temporary blow-up armchairs (ugly but surprisingly comfortable), and my computer is 95% back to where it was, things should be a bit easier.

This is essentially how our apartment looks like now, bare, except for blow-up airchairs, which wouldn't look out of place in a 1970s scifi movie (note the inbuilt bottle holder!):



After more than two years intensive German study I also feel the need to free up my schedule to do some other things as well. It's clear from my own rate of progress that I won't get to a point where I can easily converse at C1+ for a while. I can get work here, but it will require writing/reading in English - so I have decided to switch over to a morning reading study schedule for German and afternoon English work schedule, with German films in the evening. But as always my study schedule is a work in progress, so expect changes next month.



This month I read my first scifi space opera, Pandora's Star by Peter Hamilton (748 pages). It's surprising how rich scifi vocabulary is: you have words covering everything from politics to agriculture etc, and certainly feel my German getting stretched reading this, even if the plot was ultimately a bit disappointing. I am halfway through the companion book, which might have been a mistake as I am getting a bit bored which is slowly down my reading a bit. I will aim to finish this next week. My current aim is to read a bit over 900 pages a month (10000 per year) so I was a bit under this this month, but hopefully I'll catchup in July.

I saw 22 films in June, but no German ones. :(

I did watch the German knock-off of the Gordan Ramsey cooking show "Hell's Kitchen Deutschland". A surprisingly bad reality show, with so called German Prominente (celebrities), which were really no-name B-(C?)-grade actors desperately trying to raise their profile via reality tv. It did demonstrate the surprisingly sexist nature of German TV, of four of the five Prominente women: one was 17-year-old runner up in German's next Top Model; one was the ex-wife of Tony Curtis (although she was an significant movie actor in her own right in the 1950s people only ever referred to her as Tony's ex); one was an ex-German-Playboy centerfold; and one was a Turkish sex-academic-dominatrix. Of the men: one was a Olympic gold medalist; one an ex-top-footballer; one a current TV talk show host; one a current soap opera star; and one a popular schlager singer. In addition there was a very old couple that seemed to be essentially there so we could laugh at old people under stress. I leave it as an exercise for the reader to decide who is who in the picture below.



After most of the women had left, the chef -- who runs Mitchellen starred restaurants in Germany -- said "that's why I don't want women in my kitchen"; I felt like throwing my shoe at the screen and saying, well perhaps if you got some women who were not <18 or >90, who had actually some skills other than sex, it might have turned out differently. You could argue this is because it is a reality show, but all the German talk shows (which is a very popular format) are largely made up by men; even when the topic is something like "women's experiences of pregnancy" almost certainly four of the five experts will be older >50+ white men, with one token women thrown in. Unfortunately, there is much room for improvement here in Germany.





-----
BOOKS

34. Der Stern Der Pandora (Commonwealth Saga, #1). Peter F. Hamilton. 748 Seiten. Ebook. My first German space opera! I found the vocabulary here a bit of a stretch at first, but quickly got into it. 7/10.

-----
MOVIES

470. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011). Maxidome. 9/10

469. Dagon (2001). Maxidome. 5/10.

468. Angel Heart (1987). Maxidome. 8/10.

467. Mary & Max (2009). Mubi. Second time with K. 8/10.

466. Hard Candy (2005). Mubi. Snip. Snip. 8/10.

465. Mary & Max (2009). Mubi. Very nice dark and moving animation out of Australia. Would have liked to have heard it in English if only to hear the great late Philip Hoffman as Max. 8/10.

464. The Safe (2012). Saw this more than a year ago with subtitles; nice to see how easy this is to understand without subtitles now. 8/10.

463. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episode 6. 5/10.

------------------Zwei Jahre Deutsch------------------

462. Clash of the Titans (2010). Maxidome. 4/10.

461. La science des rêves (2006). Mubi. Das zweite Mal mit K. 8/10.

460. Spartan (2004). Maxidome. 8/10.

459. King of New York - König zwischen Tag und Nacht (1990). Maxidome. 9/10.

458. La science des rêves (2006). Mubi. Beautiful romantic dreamscapes by director of TESoSM. 8/10.

457. The Brothers Grimm (2005). Maxidome. 6/10.

455-456. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episodes 4-5. 5/10.

454. Sin Nombre (2009). Mubi. Excellent gritty story of a family traveling from Guatemala to the USA, and the intertwined story of a man who tries to leave the El Mara gang. I would have liked to have seen this in the original Spanish, but the German dubbing wasn't bad. 8/10.

453. Casino (1995). Maxidome. 9/10.

452. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episode 3. 6/10.

448-451. Falling Skies - Season 2 - 10 Episodes. Maxidome. 5/10.



Edited by patrickwilken on 03 July 2014 at 11:18am

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soclydeza85
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2206 days ago

357 posts - 502 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, French

 
 Message 147 of 295
05 July 2014 at 8:06pm | IP Logged 
patrickwilken wrote:

MOVIES

470. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011). Maxidome. 9/10

469. Dagon (2001). Maxidome. 5/10.

468. Angel Heart (1987). Maxidome. 8/10.

467. Mary & Max (2009). Mubi. Second time with K. 8/10.

466. Hard Candy (2005). Mubi. Snip. Snip. 8/10.

465. Mary & Max (2009). Mubi. Very nice dark and moving animation out of Australia. Would have liked to have heard it in English if only to hear the great late Philip Hoffman as Max. 8/10.

464. The Safe (2012). Saw this more than a year ago with subtitles; nice to see how easy this is to understand without subtitles now. 8/10.

463. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episode 6. 5/10.

------------------Zwei Jahre Deutsch------------------

462. Clash of the Titans (2010). Maxidome. 4/10.

461. La science des rêves (2006). Mubi. Das zweite Mal mit K. 8/10.

460. Spartan (2004). Maxidome. 8/10.

459. King of New York - König zwischen Tag und Nacht (1990). Maxidome. 9/10.

458. La science des rêves (2006). Mubi. Beautiful romantic dreamscapes by director of TESoSM. 8/10.

457. The Brothers Grimm (2005). Maxidome. 6/10.

455-456. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episodes 4-5. 5/10.

454. Sin Nombre (2009). Mubi. Excellent gritty story of a family traveling from Guatemala to the USA, and the intertwined story of a man who tries to leave the El Mara gang. I would have liked to have seen this in the original Spanish, but the German dubbing wasn't bad. 8/10.

453. Casino (1995). Maxidome. 9/10.

452. Hell's Kitchen Deutschland (2014). Maxidome. Episode 3. 6/10.

448-451. Falling Skies - Season 2 - 10 Episodes. Maxidome. 5/10.



Hey Pat, sorry if you indicated this somewhere else that I missed, but were you able to watch these movies dubbed in German?
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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2832 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 148 of 295
05 July 2014 at 8:31pm | IP Logged 
soclydeza85 wrote:

Hey Pat, sorry if you indicated this somewhere else that I missed, but were you able to watch these movies dubbed in German?


Yes. Germany has a huge dubbing industry - most people don't watch subtitled films - unlike say Sweden or Netherlands, which is a huge advantage for language learners.

Unfortunately dubbed films can be a bit hard to get in English speaking countries. I am a member of two online streaming services - Maxdome and Mubi. Mubi shows different films depending on what country you are in, but Maxdome (I think) is purely German. Amazon.de Prime is also has lots of dubbed films on offer too now (as has Sky and Watchever).

It might be possible to directly stream movies from these services in the States, but I suspect you need to have an German (or Austrian/Swiss IP). If you are willing to go with a VPN service giving you a German IP it should be possible, though I have never tried this:

example of using VPN to watch German movies that I pulled up using Google

I think VPN services are relatively cheap - say in the 10 Euro/month range.

Edited by patrickwilken on 05 July 2014 at 8:37pm

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daegga
Tetraglot
Senior Member
Austria
lang-8.com/553301
Joined 2820 days ago

1076 posts - 1789 votes 
Speaks: German*, EnglishC2, Swedish, Norwegian
Studies: Danish, French, Finnish, Icelandic

 
 Message 149 of 295
06 July 2014 at 12:40am | IP Logged 
patrickwilken wrote:
    
Unfortunately dubbed films can be a bit hard to get in English speaking countries. I am
a member of two online streaming services - Maxdome and Mubi. Mubi shows different
films depending on what country you are in, but Maxdome (I think) is purely German.
Amazon.de Prime is also has lots of dubbed films on offer too now (as has Sky and
Watchever).

It might be possible to directly stream movies from these services in the States, but I
suspect you need to have an German (or Austrian/Swiss IP). If you are willing to go
with a VPN service giving you a German IP it should be possible, though I have never
tried this:


Using VPN services for those services is legally problematic if it is used in order to
circumvent restrictions, even if you pay (and this might lead to things like account
freezing). There are streaming sites which offer movies free of charge and also
reside in that legal greyzone at least as far as the user is concerned. But between two
not-quite-legal sources, I would use the free one ;) I won't mention any specific site,
but there was a lot in the news last year about a site that was taken down
(but is now running again). So if the legal ways won't work in the US, you could always
google for these sites (or ask pretty much any German between 16 and 40 or so).

Edited by daegga on 06 July 2014 at 12:47am

1 person has voted this message useful



soclydeza85
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2206 days ago

357 posts - 502 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: German, French

 
 Message 150 of 295
06 July 2014 at 3:16am | IP Logged 
patrickwilken wrote:
Unfortunately dubbed films can be a bit hard to get in English speaking countries. I am a member of two online streaming services - Maxdome and Mubi. Mubi shows different films depending on what country you are in, but Maxdome (I think) is purely German. Amazon.de Prime is also has lots of dubbed films on offer too now (as has Sky and Watchever).


Ah, I got all excited! I checked out Maxdone; on the plus side there was a window that popped up that said they are trying to expand their service to more countries. Whether the US is one of them, and whether it would just be a US version (all in English), who knows.
1 person has voted this message useful



patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2832 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 151 of 295
06 July 2014 at 10:04am | IP Logged 
daegga wrote:
patrickwilken wrote:
    
Unfortunately dubbed films can be a bit hard to get in English speaking countries. I am
a member of two online streaming services - Maxdome and Mubi. Mubi shows different
films depending on what country you are in, but Maxdome (I think) is purely German.
Amazon.de Prime is also has lots of dubbed films on offer too now (as has Sky and
Watchever).

It might be possible to directly stream movies from these services in the States, but I
suspect you need to have an German (or Austrian/Swiss IP). If you are willing to go
with a VPN service giving you a German IP it should be possible, though I have never
tried this:


Using VPN services for those services is legally problematic if it is used in order to
circumvent restrictions, even if you pay (and this might lead to things like account
freezing). There are streaming sites which offer movies free of charge and also
reside in that legal greyzone at least as far as the user is concerned. But between two
not-quite-legal sources, I would use the free one ;) I won't mention any specific site,
but there was a lot in the news last year about a site that was taken down
(but is now running again). So if the legal ways won't work in the US, you could always
google for these sites (or ask pretty much any German between 16 and 40 or so).


I would think the so called "free" services are legally much more problematic.

Also it should be noted that Germany has a special class of lawyers that literally send out 100000s of letters per year to people using so called free services. Though I suspect they wouldn't worry too much about people living outside the Germany/EU where collection is too difficult.

I don't think using VPN to watch a show is so legally risky though - especially if you are paying for the service.

The issue with downloading via Bittorrent is that you are uploading too (the lawyers generally assume for every movie you download you upload 100s of copies - hence the huge damage claims for loss of revenue). When you are using a legitimate source, you aren't uploading, you are simply downloading AND you are paying copyright fees (perhaps in the wrong country - but still). The possible damages that a lawyer could go after you for are peanuts and it's simply not worth it.

So yeah they might freeze your Maxdome account, but it's only 8 euros a month - so who cares? And are the management of Maxdome really going to worry about this if they don't have to? It's just a waste of their money to try to police this.

Edited by patrickwilken on 06 July 2014 at 10:06am

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patrickwilken
Senior Member
Germany
radiant-flux.net
Joined 2832 days ago

1546 posts - 3200 votes 
Studies: German

 
 Message 152 of 295
22 July 2014 at 11:45pm | IP Logged 
It's suddenly High Summer here in Berlin and just chilling out to Seeed. Their Ode to Berlin - Dickes B - is a worth a listen. It certainly captures a certain feel for Berlin:

Dickes B

For something in English, which captures a bit of the city near where I live is DENA - Cash, Diamond Rings, Swimming Pools.





Edited by patrickwilken on 23 July 2014 at 12:02am



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