About this project
Lango is a language learning tool for every language learner. The Lango app is designed to make recording, filing, reviewing and sharing vocabulary easy, by enabling users to capture vocabulary directly from native speakers and share the audio/visual recordings with the greater Lango community. Lango is a learn-as-you-go learning tool that allows users to learn from their surroundings and from Lango's organically growing library of recordings.
Lango is open-sourcing language learning, by offering a process and not a product. We believe in the power of interactions and created a platform that makes us all learners and teachers. With Lango any language becomes learnable. Want to learn Morrocan Arabic, Zulu, or Elvish? There’s now an app for that.
How it Works: When the user wants to capture a word, he/she simply snaps a picture of the item and records a local person saying the name of the item. This recording is saved in Lango as a picture/sound note-card for reviewing and sharing later.
Not around native speakers of the language you’re learning? Snap a picture anyways and download the recordings from our ever growing database of languages. Or search a word or topic you’re interested in and find complete note-cards or stacks of cards related to what you’re thinking about.
We want language learning to be experiential and Lango is built to help users learn from each other and from their surroundings. As the Lango community grows, an expanding audio/visual library of languages will develop. There are over 6,900 languages in the world. With Lango's app and a curious community, we could capture them all!
How Can You Use Lango: Besides individual learning and picking up words in daily interactions, Lango can be used in alongside any traditional or non-traditional language learning program. Here are some examples:
In a Classroom Setting: Take your vocab lists and search for them on Lango. You can quickly and easily make notecard sets to study for any test. If someone who's already taken your class has made a set for a specific chapter of your book, search for it and find it. Teachers! You can pre-make stacks and have all your vocab lists ready to go for students to download, study, and ace their next test.
With a Tutor: Whether your are using a book to guide you or simply working through topics you are interested in, Lango can help you record, organize, and study vocabulary on your own. It's nice to work with a native because you can make cards for every new word as you learn it. You can also go out with your tutor and do some exploring with the app to add to your personal language database or bring pictures back to class and make stacks out of recent trips, interactions, or interests.
Some people use the Growing Participator Approach (GPA) to learning language. We've made a short video to show you how you can use the Lango app to record, save, and study your language. You can check it out here:
On Your Own: Going solo, isn't quite the same anymore. Once Lango is finished you'll be able to follow other users, form a community of language learners, and learn from what others are learning. Whether you're in a foreign country or not, making language notecards is simple and whether you're making your own notecards or downloading words or stacks already created by others, you'll be able to study, learn, and grow in your language wherever you are.
Who is Lango? Lango is an international team of friends who love traveling, love culture and love bringing people together. We are developers, designers, entrepreneurs, and most of all language junkies (we all speak at least 2 languages and most are currently learning a language). Our team, currently located on 3 continents epitomizes our goal of bringing the world together. The original core met in Jordan, where we first came up with Lango, and as we've moved forward we have brought in other like minded friends knowing we need more than an idea and a couple developers to make Lango a success. We want to invite you too! Come join our growing community of language learners as we seek to capture and share every language.
What the Kickstarter Campaign Pays For:
1. The Gamification of the app:
We like doing fun things. When learning is fun, we do it more. We also like to compete, and when we compete, we try harder and participate more. For this reason, we'd like to gamify Lango by adding achievements, a point earning system, and rankings to the different languages being learned based on study time and comprehension.
2. Pre-recoding main languages:
Crowd sourcing is great because it provides the Lango members the opportunity to benefit from others' recordings. The problem however is that in order to have data input, you need users, and in order to have users, you need data. In order to break this cyclical chain, we want to pay professionals to jumpstart our database by pre-recording some of the main languages spoken around the world. The number we include will depend on the amount we raise. Some of the languages we'd love to pre-record are: Spanish, French, German, Chinese, Arabic, Russian, Japanese, Hindi, Urdu. We also are including a "Your language first" Pledge level if you want your language to be included, or if your language is on the list above, that it is for sure included in our professional recordings.
3. Study Metrics:
The informed learner is the best kind of learner. We'd love to provide our users with every sort of measure possible to help know how to study more efficiently. Some metrics we'd like to add are, how well a word is known, how well a stack is known, and how many times a word or stack has been reviewed. With these metrics, we could also allow sorting stacks by how well they are known and also add a study mode that only takes the words you've had a hard time learning and puts them together.
4. App Design and Debugging:
Basically we want our app to look good and run well. Part of the funding from our Kickstarter project will go to paying to spice up the app and to fix any bugs/glitches in the beta version of the app.
Who Are We?
Heath Arensen – Co-Founder & Lead Strategist
Heath has been involved in starting businesses on 3 continents where his background and experience have allowed him to play a unique role as a networker, enabler, and empowerer for some great people with great ideas. These ideas are influenced by his experiences growing up in Kenya and career that has taken him across the globe. Heath’s company Tanasuk Technologies, is a leading web development firm in the Middle East and is currently helping incubate startups Hashdoc and Lango.
Always looking for the next big idea, Heath is a constant networker and supporter of social enterprises around the world.
Gertjan Van Laar – Technical Lead
A Dutchman in South Asia, Gertjan has spent most of his professional career working for tech companies and developing apps in the Netherlands. Gertjan moved to Karachi, Pakistan with a dream to demonstrate through his businesses that there is more to life than just what we see and to provide people with hope and inspiration for the future.
In 2011, Gertjan started Grappetite a company that designs and develops apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phones.
Andy Larkin – Co-Founder and Project Director
Born in Hong Kong, and having lived in 8 countries even Andy is not sure where's home. An avid entrepreneur, Andy started his first business in college re-selling textbooks and in his travels has done consulting work for start-ups in all over the world. He has spent the last 4 years in the Middle East learning Arabic and working with Tanasuk Technologies to plan and begin the development of the Lango app.
Andy has a passion for bringing people together and building bridges of understanding between cultures and has worked with several organizations to facilitate cultural exchanges and conferences built around dialogue and understanding.
Risks and challenges
We have worked hard for the last two years to get this far. First brainstorming the idea, then wireframing (mapping out) the app and developing our plan to move it forward. So far we've been constrained however, by the availability of our app developers. As a start-up working on boot-strapping Lango, we have not been able to have a developer fully dedicated to the app. Our hope is that through our Kickstarter project we'll be able to have dedicated work and greatly speed up our process.
In terms of growth and usability, Lango is dependent on our community. As mentioned above, the more users we have the more beneficial the app will be to people around the world. A big part of our Kickstarter campaign is getting the word out and we'd love to have you join us in sharing this wonderful language learning tool.
Thanks for your support! We're looking forward to delivering an app that can make your language learning experience more fun and interactive!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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