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Chinese Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Thread poster: Libin PhD
Libin PhD  Identity Verified
Chinese to English
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Apr 19, 2002

For those of you who learn Chinese as a foreign language, I have a Chinese FAQs page that I think could be of help. It answers questions such as, How old is the Chinese language? How many characters are there in Chinese? What is the difference between Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese? etc.



If interested, please follow the link below to read the page:



http://www.asiana.com/faqs.html





[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-04-19 23:52 ]


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Africa
Local time: 13:02
Italian to Russian
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Apr 20, 2002

Many thanks for the reference. I am actually very interested in taking a course of Chinese language but not sure yet which one to pick: Mandarin or Cantonese?... (we are staying in Hong Kong at the moment)



May be you can give me a piece of advice???



Thank you for the information once again.


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Marta Argat  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:02
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gorgeous! Apr 20, 2002

Thank you! Now I can give the link to many of my friends who ask me the things like this.

Regards,

Luo


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Kevin Yang  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:02
Member (2003)
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A very informative site! Apr 20, 2002

Good job, Dr. Bin Li! I just visited your site and was very impressed with the information you offered in you site. It is a very good idea to offer free, accurate and scholarly advises and information to the Chinese learners.



I have a couple of suggestions. Perhaps you should also setup a Q&A section posting both the questions and answers to certain emails you received from the Chinese learners. Secondly, \"Chinese 101\" is a very good title for the people who went to colleges here in America. I wonder if it still makes the same sense to those people who live in other countries and have never been to America. This is one of those \"regional\" vs. \"mainstream\" dispute in translation.



Good luck with your effort!



Kevin





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CLS Lexi-tech
Local time: 01:02
Member (2004)
English to Italian
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Thank you Apr 20, 2002

some of our project managers will certainly benefit from a page like this.



Does anybody know of other similar FAQ about other languages?



paola l m

moderator EN-IT


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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Thank you, Kevin and Paola, for your encouragement Apr 20, 2002

Thank you, Kevin and Paola for your kind words. I spent some time putting this together during the Christmas and New Year holiday season when business was slow. It is difficult to gather the information you want about Chinese in the US. I have been thinking about going back to China and spent a week or two in the National Library for sometime so that I can get all the info I need for the other topics. I wish I could make the trip by the end of these year.





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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Thank you for your suggestions Apr 20, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-04-20 21:03, Tongli wrote:

Good job, Dr. Bin Li! I just visited your site and was very impressed with the information you offered in you site. It is a very good idea to offer free, accurate and scholarly advises and information to the Chinese learners.



I have a couple of suggestions. Perhaps you should also setup a Q&A section posting both the questions and answers to certain emails you received from the Chinese learners. Secondly, \"Chinese 101\" is a very good title for the people who went to colleges here in America. I wonder if it still makes the same sense to those people who live in other countries and have never been to America. This is one of those \"regional\" vs. \"mainstream\" dispute in translation.



Good luck with your effort!



Kevin









Thanks, Kevin, for your suggestions. I probably should set up a BBS on my site so that people can ask questions and get answers from other people. I did set up a BBS a few years back before I put up this FAQ page. It did not raise enough interests. So I deleted that. I will try to get it up and running again in the future.



About Chinese 101, I see your point. People without western college experience will have problem to understand it as The Basics of Chinese or 中文初步. I might put a note somewhere so that people from China and other non-western culture can understand this. I meant the page to be some true basic information about Chinese when I got started but have put more info there that probably has gone beyond Chinese 101. These topics are something that every student in China should have learnt in middle school. But the reality is that they do not teach this, at least I did not learn these through my education. I receive quite some comments from Chinese translators who felt the same way.



Thank you again for your suggestions









[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-04-21 09:19 ]

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-04-22 22:23 ]

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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Apr 22, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-04-20 05:39, Africa wrote:

Many thanks for the reference. I am actually very interested in taking a course of Chinese language but not sure yet which one to pick: Mandarin or Cantonese?... (we are staying in Hong Kong at the moment)



May be you can give me a piece of advice???



Thank you for the information once again.





Thank you for your interests. If you are going to take a Course in Chniese, Mandarin is the most useful right now and in the future. Many Hong Kong people are studying Mandarin now although the local dialect in Hong Kong is Cantonese.



Best wishes,



Bin

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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Apr 22, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-04-20 11:31, argat wrote:

Thank you! Now I can give the link to many of my friends who ask me the things like this.

Regards,

Luo





You are welcome, Argat. I hope that the answers will be helpful to your friends.



Kind regards,



Bin

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David Rockell
Chinese to English
A fine presentation of useful information Apr 22, 2002

Great job on this, Bin Li. Like Argat, I will tell anyone who asks me these questions to look up your website (not that I don\'t know the answers, of course!!). As for the person thinking of taking up Chinese to whom Bin replied earlier, I have another angle on this: If you are realy serious about it and are the sort of person who might want to learn other dialects, it might make sense to learn a dialect first and then Mandarin. Mandarin is as bad as English in that once it infects your brain, it\'s a bit hard to surpress it when trying to learn other stuff but once Cantonese or Wu is mastered, it is easy enough learning Mandarin and there are heaps of materials available for Mandarin which is not the case for the others (i.e. get the tough ones out of the way first). In fact, this is the way most Chinese people learn \'Chinese\'; dialect first in purely spoken form and then the artifical language of Mandarin in a way not too disimilar from learning a foreign language at school. Cantonese is spoken in Guangdong and Guangxi, Wu in Shanghai and the the Yangtse River Delta and Mandarin both everywhere and nowhere (very Zen, eh). Sorry, got a bit off the track. Hope the sun is shining for you in Arizona, Bin Li.

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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Apr 22, 2002



[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-04-22 22:26 ]


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Libin PhD  Identity Verified
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Apr 22, 2002

Quote:


On 2002-04-22 12:13, David Rockell wrote:

Great job on this, Bin Li. Like Argat, I will tell anyone who asks me these questions to look up your website (not that I don\'t know the answers, of course!!). As for the person thinking of taking up Chinese to whom Bin replied earlier, I have another angle on this: If you are realy serious about it and are the sort of person who might want to learn other dialects, it might make sense to learn a dialect first and then Mandarin. Mandarin is as bad as English in that once it infects your brain, it\'s a bit hard to surpress it when trying to learn other stuff but once Cantonese or Wu is mastered, it is easy enough learning Mandarin and there are heaps of materials available for Mandarin which is not the case for the others (i.e. get the tough ones out of the way first). In fact, this is the way most Chinese people learn \'Chinese\'; dialect first in purely spoken form and then the artifical language of Mandarin in a way not too disimilar from learning a foreign language at school. Cantonese is spoken in Guangdong and Guangxi, Wu in Shanghai and the the Yangtse River Delta and Mandarin both everywhere and nowhere (very Zen, eh). Sorry, got a bit off the track. Hope the sun is shining for you in Arizona, Bin Li.





Thanks, David, for your comments, especially about learning a dialect first, then Mandarin. Now I know why it is so difficult for us Mandarin speakers to pick up Wu and Cantonese. It makes a lot of sense.

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Golden View  Identity Verified
China
Local time: 13:02
Member (2002)
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Simplified Chinese v.s. Traditional Chinese / another FAQ Jun 21, 2003

Chinese v.s. Traditional Chinese
An alternative ref. link, less informative but should be useful.


[Edited at 2003-06-21 10:34]


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