I’m proud to announce the latest feature to CLO that will soon be replacing the Pong Audio forum. The original premise of Pong was to ask some open ended questions that users could record answers to and submit. Judging from feedback, these were the reasons I found why people weren’t using Pong:
1. System requirements were high – it required a specific version of Java to be installed on your computer, which wouldn’t run on many computers. Also, not everyone had a microphone attached to their computer. Some of those that did had to manually adjust their microphone settings. This was too much to expect the average user to do.
2. Usability wasn’t good – accounts had to manually be entered by the admin, so it wasn’t friendly enough to get right into. As well, there were complaints that the quality of recordings was low.
3. It was public – since most users are still beginning to learn Chinese, they weren’t ready to broadcast their potentially flawed pronunciation to the world.
4. No feedback – there was no way for the user to know whether the answers they submitted were correct.
Solution: I still believe there is merit in a system of this sorts, so I had a new version of this application created in house that attempted to solve the issues noted above. So without further adieu, I’m proud to present (drum roll please…) the new Exercises page!
The premise here is similar. Questions will be asked in audio format. There will be no audio clues however, so you will be forced to use your listening skills. There are references to the lesson that each question is taken from however. To begin with, there are a list of 16 questions – one from each 10 lessons. Go through and see which ones you can figure out. You can then choose whether to respond or not.
Your response can either be in audio format – grab your microphone if you have one and record your answer – or you can type out your answer in any format if you so choose. Then click submit. Your answer will then be sent to a CLO teacher who will then send you feedback. Once the feedback has been sent, your page will be updated with teacher feedback for each of the questions you answered.
Unlike Pong, your answers will not be made public, so don’t be shy! We also encourage creativity in your answers!
This application is still in beta, so I expect there may be some bugs initially. Please send me your feedback on what you like, as well as what we can change to improve the experience further. Enjoy!
UPDATE: It turns out that the audio recordings aren’t working. I’m on it to get that fixed. In the meantime you can still send in text answers. Thanks to those who submitted answers and sent me feedback. Some of your suggestions have already been implemented. UPDATE: Everything is now working smoothly. Please continue to send me your feedback.