I got my New York Public Library card in the mail today.
Anyone who lives in New York state is eligible for a card, so I now have access to the library’s impressive collection of online resources.
I spent the morning refreshing my Spanish at the NYPL’s Online Language Learning Center. It uses the Rosetta Stone software, which now has a place on my desert island list of media resources, along with the White Album and the entire first season of The Dog Whisperer.
If you haven’t used or seen Rosetta Stone, it is Language learning software with the remarkable ability to hack your brain and force it to actually understand and remember all of those verb conjugations you had to memorize back in college. The lessons are reinforced with audio, video, writing and images, so it imitates an immersion experience more than a typical grammar-based language course. There’s even a module that has you speak into a microphone and shows you a waveform comparing your speech with someone who doesn’t suck.
I haven’t explored the other web resources, but I’m tickled at getting access to this one. The software is in the $300 range, and Cornell doesn’t have a license, so I feel like I’ve gotten my taxes worth this year. Thanks NYPL!