How using Generative AI helps me improve with the learning of foreign languages.

Let me start off by saying, its about giving you options, It’s not about letting the ChatBot have all fun. A Bar and a drink with people will always be the real end use case of learning a language.

Learning a foreign language can be a challenging and time-consuming task, but technology has made it easier and more accessible than ever before. As a language learner myself, or should I say language suffer I am always looking for tools and services that help me improve and refine my language skills. 

More and more tools that were only considered accessibility tools are now part of the main stream communication tool set. One of the first I really used when trying to improve my language skills, was Voice-to-Text. I had a simple task. Stop having to ask my partner what a word meant if already knew how to say but couldn’t remember the meaning or otherwise put many words have similar sounding ending in French for example, if I can stay I should be able to find a way to write it. This is where I found a once unreliable technology had matured to a point that I should help. Solving such common issues such as the -é, -er, -ait, -ez in French. or the definite / indefinite conjugation in Hungarian. etc

Whilst I found my these technologies to help it was still very much Rubbish in, Rubbish out kinda system. What I really needed was something that would be give me options. For a while I was using DeepL as a service to help me give me options and this worked well up to point. This is where that my interested in Alex and Google Assistant based system was starting to merge with Chatbots and

One innovative tool that is being used to assist with the acquisition of a language is ChatGPT. It has been largely discussed how ChatGPT replaces or helps people create content, but I wanted to take a different perspective. How does this tool help me write better sentences in my target languages and how can I use it to refine and expand my knowledge of grammar rules to enable me to write more effectively without needing these tools? 

As many have written GPT3 and 3.5 is a language model that uses machine learning algorithms to generate responses that mimic natural conversation. The AI has been programmed with endless amounts of text data to understand context, relevancy and how to generate human-like responses to questions.

One of the key benefits of using ChatGPT to learn a language is its ability to provide personalized language practice. It allows learners to input text in the language they are learning. ChatGPT can generate responses that match their level of proficiency and provide targeted feedback on their skills. This personalized approach to language learning allows learners to focus on areas where they need the most improvement, making their study time more efficient and effective.

Another way in which ChatGPT is being used for language learning is through its integration with language exchange programs. Language exchange programs connect learners with native speakers of the language they are trying to learn, allowing them to practice their skills in a real-world context. ChatGPT can be used to supplement these exchanges, providing learners with a way to practice their skills when they cannot connect with a native speaker.

After diving deep into how the technology works, I wanted to start to really think and ask myself. So what ? How can this be helpful to a language learn. The point i wanted to explore was not to let the machine to talking but how would it help me do the talking.

One of the first methods I tried was to ask the system, “Does this sound natural” and insert target language. This felt rewarding, because most of the time, when a language learner gets to a good enough level we can see what “Good” looks like. Although we cannot create it ourselves, what I wanted was a way to create trust for myself so I knew that I had more options when writing a sentence than I had ever thought about. Secondly I wanted to write in my target language and find ways to improve but let me control the output so I could question and learn better ways of the saying what I need to say in a more native fashion. 

This put me in control of the “Input” and understanding the “Output” By which I would start to find better ways of saying what I want to say but in a more French idiomatic fashion for example. Constantly keeping in the back of my mind that this is just another tool and I am in control of what I want achieve with it. This isn’t about letting the platform have all the fun of trying to speak my target languages.

Continuing on from this I found my self creating sentences and asking asking it to sound more French or Hungarian. Trying to see and learn new method to express myself that I didn’t know. Asking it to explain the grammar didn’t always worked but it lead me down many language rabbit holes into Ethamology and crossing checking with my teachers and books.

Moving away from the language learning side of things and back into the user experience side of this project, I looking into to method of creating game like actives and personas for user to better have a sense of immersion into the language and the surroundings.

More to follow, next up. Designing UI interfaces with Generative IA and how this links into my current project.