Category Archives: iSimplifiedChinese

R.I.P. iSimplifiedChinese

It’s been a great experience and experiment, but it’s time to close this chapter. You can still play with the app, but you won’t get any feedback from teachers. Perhaps I will pivot the idea in the future, sell the underlying technology, we’ll see. Back in March, I read Running Lean by Ash Maurya and [...]

Free as in beer

A few days ago I made iSimplifiedChinese free so that more people would download it and hopefully spread the word and provide reviews. So far the good news is that it resulted in lots of downloads, but the bad news is that nobody bought any teacher feedbacks and downloads are dropping exponentially. Let’s look at [...]

How to make a Chinese language course – Part II

Using the ingredients from Part 1 I created three draft lessons for iSimplifiedChinese. In this post I analyse them in order to learn how to improve and expand the course. All lesson material is shared under CC-SA. A Chinese speaking friend of mine was kind enough to check the material for errors, but as usual [...]

How to make a Chinese language course – Part I

The goal of iSimplifiedChinese is to teach people how to pronounce Standard Mandarin Chinese. For that I need words and phrases for students to practice. But which? The goal isn’t to teach vocabulary or grammar; there are other apps, books and teachers for that. In theory you don’t need to understand a word you’re saying [...]


Apple gave me a really nice birthday present on December 2nd, when they approved my iPhone application: iSimplifiedChinese. For those who don’t know it, it allows you to practice your Chinese pronunciation by sending your pronunciations to a real Chinese person for feedback. I expected waking up filthy rich the next morning, but unfortunately it [...]