You may (or may not) remember when I lamented about all those stupid index-card websites with just lists of random words.
My argument was that the main drawback of word lists is that they had no context and are boring. You still have to go find source material on your own in order to learn those words in any meaningful context. It would be so much cooler if people can share interesting content and the words associated with it. Well, it looks like smart.fm has delivered exactly that.
There’s still lists of just random words, it won’t stop you from making those. But you can also append other media to provide context. For instance, you can learn the words to the Japanese version of Beauty and the Beast while watching the actual clip. Pretty cool. Here’s another catchy song with the full lyrics and accompanying vocabulary list.
Looks like there’s plenty of bloggy material to read as well.
Here’s a really freaky story called 「なまえのないかいぶつ」. Kind of scary. Would you read such a story to your kids? I wouldn’t unless I wanted to give them nightmares. Maybe it has something to do with why horror movies are so popular in Japanese (and scary too!).
There’s a lot of stuff in that site to play around with. My only complaint is that it can be a bit difficult to find media-based lists. It would be nice to be able to scroll through all the videos or music instead of having to mess around with tag clouds. Ahh, here we go, you have to use the results filter after you do a search. Not very intuitive if you don’t have a particular search term.
I’m having fun but I wish there was more Chinese content. Oh well, can’t have everything.
Definitely check it out. Two thumbs up.