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多読 Tadoku Reading Challenge

(2017-06-12, 10:05 am)sholum Wrote: For something a little different, I got 狼と香辛料, which I tried to read way back and couldn't; might help bridge the gap between my forte (YA fiction, apparently) and everything else, with all the economics.
I quite like this series (I'm up to about volume 14 or so now), but it is a bit trickier than the average light novel I think. In particular the banter between the main characters can be tricky to understand because one of the core dynamics is "Horo sets a verbal trap, or expects Laurence to figure out why she's annoyed from context", so there's a lot of dialogue where people don't actually come out and say what they mean. Horo also has her own dialect with weird verb conjugations but that's not too hard to get used to. There's also the usual medieval fantasy setting specialist vocab.
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(2017-06-12, 3:07 pm)pm215 Wrote:
(2017-06-12, 10:05 am)sholum Wrote: For something a little different, I got 狼と香辛料, which I tried to read way back and couldn't; might help bridge the gap between my forte (YA fiction, apparently) and everything else, with all the economics.
I quite like this series (I'm up to about volume 14 or so now), but it is a bit trickier than the average light novel I think. In particular the banter between the main characters can be tricky to understand because one of the core dynamics is "Horo sets a verbal trap, or expects Laurence to figure out why she's annoyed from context", so there's a lot of dialogue where people don't actually come out and say what they mean. Horo also has her own dialect with weird verb conjugations but that's not too hard to get used to. There's also the usual medieval fantasy setting specialist vocab.

Holy crap other people are reading this series too. Totally agree with what you guys have said and there's not much for me to add (I got up to volume 10 and still have the remaining to go through sitting on my shelf; it would be nice if the author STOPPED MAKING MORE so I can eventually "complete" it but yes I know Vol 17 is basically the actual end dfljbsldf). I probably did not pick a good choice for a good first series to get into but it had been a goal for a long, long time. Frankly I still have trouble understanding stuff from this series. There was a side story with some metaphor about Lawrence being a sheep from one of the earlier volumes and this was totally lost on me and I was confused why the hell they were talking about sheep so much or what relevance the conversation had to do with anything lol.

EDIT:

Here's something interesting since otk (my boring abbreviation) is the first series I started mining vocab out of (so this can somewhat loosely be taken perhaps as a vague indicator of how much overlap there is in vocab):

Vocab cards from chronological order (so vol1, vol2, etc.):
1642, 1045, 694, 588, 568, 391, 118, 111, 119, 192, 92, 97, 109, 118

Vol 15 onwards is missing because I don't have digital versions of those. There's some キノの旅 vocab and some other series I mined in between the creation of those otk cards so it's definitely not a true indicator of overlap but the plateauing trend I thought was neat.
Edited: 2017-06-12, 4:17 pm
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(2017-06-12, 4:08 pm)karageko Wrote: Here's something interesting since otk (my boring abbreviation) is the first series I started mining vocab out of (so this can somewhat loosely be taken perhaps as a vague indicator of how much overlap there is in vocab):

Vocab cards from chronological order (so vol1, vol2, etc.):
1642, 1045, 694, 588, 568, 391, 118, 111, 119, 192, 92, 97, 109, 118

Vol 15 onwards is missing because I don't have digital versions of those. There's some キノの旅 vocab and some other series I mined in between the creation of those otk cards so it's definitely not a true indicator of overlap but the plateauing trend I thought was neat.

Can I ask how you mined your book? I've tried mining before but I get a lot of false positives or some really random grammar. Just a link to the tool you've used is fine.
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(2017-06-12, 5:50 pm)uchuu Wrote:
(2017-06-12, 4:08 pm)karageko Wrote: Here's something interesting since otk (my boring abbreviation) is the first series I started mining vocab out of (so this can somewhat loosely be taken perhaps as a vague indicator of how much overlap there is in vocab):

Vocab cards from chronological order (so vol1, vol2, etc.):
1642, 1045, 694, 588, 568, 391, 118, 111, 119, 192, 92, 97, 109, 118

Vol 15 onwards is missing because I don't have digital versions of those. There's some キノの旅 vocab and some other series I mined in between the creation of those otk cards so it's definitely not a true indicator of overlap but the plateauing trend I thought was neat.

Can I ask how you mined your book? I've tried mining before but I get a lot of false positives or some really random grammar. Just a link to the tool you've used is fine.

The first couple of volumes I mined very manually using Rikaisama as I went along reading it (copy and pasting sentences and definitions into Anki directly). This was so goddamn time consuming that later I started using a script I coded myself that I never actually released to the public even though I originally intended to (there's spaghetti that needs to be purged and some better documentation that should be added); to be honest it sort of seems like some morphman-related thing would do a better job of what it tries to do (except as far as I'm aware you can't have morphman spit out sentences from the input text containing unknown words). Basically what my script does is it determines your existing vocab knowledge by looking through your Anki db and then finds all the words in an input text that are not contained in your Anki db and then spits out the sentences from the input text in the order the unknown words were discovered, as well as definitions grabbed from epwings I use (recent feature I implemented only a few months ago) and edict. A single sentence may contain more than 1 unknown word.

It's definitely not perfect because it relies on MeCab to actually parse and separate individual words correctly which it doesn't always do. Only words that have actual entries in the epwings I use or edict are considered. Even then I still have a separate text file which is newline separated containing words to ignore (because not all words are necessarily worth making an Anki card for in my opinion and the Anki db doesn't capture your actual knowledge). This ignore list is where the false positives or random grammar you're talking about might end up going. I actually still have to do a lot of manual filtering afterwards (because I want to highlight more context around an unknown word usually or words whose meanings are blatantly obvious from the individual kanji I add to the ignore list). So it's a pretty unwieldy tool until you've done a bunch of manual work to fine tune an ignore list I suppose. However, for me it is an extreme time-saver compared to what I was doing at the beginning: what would have taken probably 2 weeks or more to make 500 cards using my initial process takes me 2-3 full days filtering 1000 cards down to 500 cards (actual example from a week ago).

I might make a video or something about my process since some people ask me what I do and it's sort of clunky to try and describe but I'm not sure there is all that much utility of such a video seeing as the sole user of this script is me.
Edited: 2017-06-12, 10:30 pm
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T_T 

My friend recommended a book that she loved so I figured I'd give it a shot for a last minute tadoku run. I always read realistic stuff and rarely (if ever) need to look up words. She's a fantasy freak so I was a bit wary but...

5 rows in and I already had to consult the dictionary 12 times. What a painful reminder that my Japanese is actually not that good...

Thanks for the tadoku folks! I didnmt have time to read much but it was great to pick up some of those books that were rotting in my bookshelf this month. See you again in autumn!
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Well if 1648.48 pages is not reading much I need to up my game!

I don't think twelve look ups is loads for reading outside your comfort zone. It's discouraging but my experience breaking in to new genres is that there generally tend to be a small amount of words you don't know that are common enough to make it seem like there's loads you don't know, but the actuality is that once you've learned a couple of hundred new words it becomes drastically easier.
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The vocabulary for fantasy/sf can be crazy though! I have a good friend who is so fluent that she wrote her own fantasy/sf novel in Japanese for a school project. She showed me her vocab list once, it was nuts.

My friends who read historical novels (e.g. piracy in sixteenth-century Spain) report that these are also awful.

For SF, in English we can cheat a lot because even unfamiliar techie words tend to be based on familiar roots. Of course in Japanese you can draw on kanji "roots," but it's a lot harder to guess meanings & pronunciations of unfamiliar Japanese words, for me at least, even with a good knowledge of kanji.

But Splatted is right, a bit of intensive reading in your chosen genre will go a long way. I started reading with a light fantasy series, and among the first Japanese words I learned were 結界 (magical barrier), 魔法使い (sorcerer), and 寺院 (temple). I used to test the range of dictionaries by looking up those words (in the days of paper dictionaries) - nearly every dictionary fails "kekkai." :-)
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Edo-period setting stuff has a lot of its own vocab too. My current pet peeve is that character names tend to be weird by modern-japanese name conventions and not always furigana'd either so I'm often left with no idea how to pronounce them (eg 六蔵 右京之介 塩谷判官 -- though that last at least being a character in a real play of the era appears in an entry in the encyclopedia on my dictionary...)
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This week has kicked my ass. I was hoping to finish 暗いところで待ち合わせ by 乙一 this week to keep up with my one book/week streak, but I don't think it's gonna happen. Going to sprint for the rest of the day and see how much I can get done.

EDIT: 52 pages, 74% complete in my book, and I'm friiiiied. That's all the Tadoku I have in me. I'll have to settle with being 107.88 pages behind Zgarbas. Sigh.
Edited: 2017-06-30, 10:13 pm
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Just when I thought I could marathon 200+ pages on the last day, my transmission started acting up while running errands and kept me away from my reading for most of the day.

Well, I more than met my goal this time (1408/1000), but I was so close to beating gaiaslastlaugh... I'll have my revenge next time!

Good job, everyone!
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(2017-06-30, 10:07 pm)sholum Wrote: Well, I more than met my goal this time (1408/1000), but I was so close to beating gaiaslastlaugh... I'll have my revenge next time!
Oh, it's SO on... ;-)
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Good round everyone. I thought the weekend was still reading time for this round and ended up miscalculating hard. Going to have to work on reading a bit more consistently, haven't been reading daily anymore lately.
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(2017-06-30, 6:07 pm)gaiaslastlaugh Wrote: This week has kicked my ass. I was hoping to finish 暗いところで待ち合わせ by 乙一 this week to keep up with my one book/week streak, but I don't think it's gonna happen. Going to sprint for the rest of the day and see how much I can get done.

EDIT: 52 pages, 74% complete in my book, and I'm friiiiied. That's all the Tadoku I have in me. I'll have to settle with being 107.88 pages behind Zgarbas. Sigh.

[Image: yPNkqT].

Technically, 120. I was so down about the vocab that I forgot to actually update tadoku. 
I know it's normal, but I'm very lazy and forget what the story is about whenever I have to look words up. And now my friend is all 'let me know what you think about this 500 page book' and I'm just thinking I need friends who read 純文学。
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Nearly 100 short of my modest goal of 500. I knew this was going to be a bad round but it was badder than I thought.

I never understand how people can manage what the heavy hitters do because I know I couldn't get anywhere near them in English. I've always been a slow reader! Actually if when don't have to look up words I don't think my Japanese reading is far behind my English reading speed - which sounds impressive until you realize that it would be more honest to phrase it as: "I don't think my English reading speed is much better than my Japanese reading speed".

For some reason I think I did notice an increase in speed in the last chapter today. I guess that means I've got to keep up reading to press improvement (if it turns out to be an improvement). I haven't really time for reading next month - but I didn't have last month either.

And wouldn't it be fun if my Japanese reading speed overtook my English?

People will be super-impressed if I don't mention how low it all is!
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I managed to hit my stretch goal of 3000 pages (average 100 pages a day), so I'm happy with how this round went. That pace was pretty exhausting towards the end, though. 9 books in total (well, 8 and two halves).
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At 1174 I comfortably passed my goal of 800, and I did it in a manner that feels sustainable moving forwards. I think I've read more in massive binges during the early parts of Tadoku before, but I've always burned out by the end. This is the first time I've managed to read a good amount and finish with the intention of carrying on.

In total I read approximately:

2 Books
20 Manga volumes
55 News articles

Edit @Curedolly: I feel the same about my reading speed. I think it's more about how much time you spend actually reading more than how good you are it though. I.e. if I don't take the time to think about all the things I don't understand then the speeds are similar, but the same time and effort gives me much better comprehension in English.
Edited: 2017-07-01, 6:52 am
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This challenge is quite a huge fail for me. I am way behind any of my objectives.

I read 3 books in French, 1.2 in English and only one and a half in Japanese. My goal was 6 books in French, 4 in English and 3 in Japanese. The goals might seem huge but I would have been able to do it because I had enough free time but I spend it no so much on reading.

I wanted to read French again because it was a very longtime since I read a book in French and wanted to see if I still good at books in my native language. This challenge shows that I still am (my benchmarks shows that I read 5 times faster in French than English and 8 times faster in French than Japanese) so I don't think I will read in French next time. Or if I do I will read must-read books from Victor Hugo, Proust or Flaubert that I still consider hard to read.

I longed to read the Lord of the rings. Finally I am past the first book but I could not end the series nor read the silmarillion.

On the Japanese side, I am still stuck on the Suzumiya series and I read an introductory book about economics.

Thank you everyone for joining.
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I got completely caught up in another area of my life and stopped reading part way through the month. I wish there were more hours in the day. It feels like there's only enough free time for one hobby or endeavour if you want to get good at it.

(2017-06-30, 10:19 am)tanaquil Wrote: But Splatted is right, a bit of intensive reading in your chosen genre will go a long way. I started reading with a light fantasy series, and among the first Japanese words I learned were 結界 (magical barrier), 魔法使い (sorcerer), and 寺院 (temple). I used to test the range of dictionaries by looking up those words (in the days of paper dictionaries) - nearly every dictionary fails "kekkai." :-)
If you watch a lot of fantasy/supernatural anime, you'll hear 結界 a lot Smile
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I'm sad I missed this round of Tadoku, but I was in Japan for the first part of the month and traveling/in recovery for most of the rest of the month, so I doubt I would have accomplished much even if I had realized there was a Tadoku going on sooner.

Hope to join in when the next round comes along.
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The official results for the latest round are now up on the blog: https://readmod.wordpress.com/2017/07/03...nd-report/

I usually compile together and post them about 2 days after tadoku ends. Included are category awards not viewable from the tadoku app, so by all means check out the blog after each round. ^-^

Blog link here: http://readmod.wordpress.com/
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Thanks Jackdaw! This is the first time I've received any honourable mentions. Smile

On that note though I wonder if I was submitting news wrong. I was counting characters and submitting pages for every 400, since 1 news = 1 book = 1 net = 400 characters, but on the blog post it says news articles not pages, and Gaiaslastlaugh who seems to read far more news than me has a significantly lower number.
Edited: 2017-07-03, 6:07 pm
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@Jackdaw, Thank you for publish the round results.

Just a question what did happen to my French reading because it literally disappeared?
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(2017-07-03, 5:44 pm)Splatted Wrote: Thanks Jackdaw! This is the first time I've received any honourable mentions. Smile

On that note though I wonder if I was submitting news wrong. I was counting characters and submitting pages for every 400, since 1 news = 1 book = 1 net = 400 characters, but on the blog post it says news articles not pages, and Gaiaslastlaugh who seems to read far more news than me has a significantly lower number.

I think you're fine. I also counted characters, not articles read. The latter wouldn't make much sense, as some articles I read where around 800 characters while others were around 4,000.
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(2017-07-03, 8:25 pm)Lithrein Wrote: @Jackdaw, Thank you for publish the round results.

Just a question what did happen to my French reading because it literally disappeared?

>I wanted to read French again because it was a very longtime since I read a book in French and wanted to see if I still good at books in my native language.

Tadoku is only for reading in foreign languages, not your native language. That's probably why.
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@Splatted: A-ah, I just kept on writing the blog posts in the same style as before and it doesn't seem like the wording in the blog was carefully considered before I took over. I could look over the template and see if there's any improvements to the language I can make for the next one. And also if possible, look over and update the rules.

In the mean time, this is what I can recall we've said in the past when someone brought it up. Our recommendations for news in particular are fairly loose. And this has to do with formatting and text density varying wildly between news sites and papers. With net news (typically NHK articles) I think I recall you can count about 3 decently sized paragraphs as roughly equivalent to 1 point, so if you're reading anything longer than that you may count it as two or more pages. If in doubt, you can always fall back on the 400 characters per point conversion rate you've used (in fact, it's the most exact method).

Bottom line, though, it's always up to your best judgment to interprete and report fair numbers. The text density varies so much within each medium that it's difficult for us to put a hard rule on reporting (and either way we couldn't enforce it), but by following our recommendations everyone should be able to stay on a roughly even playing field at least. Unfortunatelly the consequence of this looseness is that some participants will inevitably be underreporting what they've read while others will end up too generous in their estimates. Thus we might get discrepancies like the one you're mentioning.

@Lithrein: And yes, I can confirm your French scores were deleted for breaking our rules. You're by all means welcome to read in your native language, but tadoku is for people practicing and learning a second language. As much as I would like to encourage your efforts in French, it wouldn't be fair to the other participants to keep your score in. Instead I recommend you find another reading challenge for your native language specifically. Unfortunatelly mass deleting scores bugged out your profile, so we couldn't enter you into the category awards, but you're still in the top lists for the points you gained in the other languages you read in.
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