speak chinese like a native

Mac Photoshop Flashcard Trick

Posted by sparechange October 4, 2007 in the Group General Discussion .

This may be slightly off-topic, but I'm totally geekin' out over my accomplishment, so I must tell the world.

I have created a series of "desktop flashcards" on my Mac (at work) using Photoshop CS3's ability to batch-export graphics with variable data. This is part of my continued efforts to increase my exposure to the language.

I started by creating a list of vocabulary (using simplified, traditional, pinyin, and English) in an Excel spreadsheet, and then exporting it as a tab-separated text file. Next, I created a template in Photoshop, and pointed it to my data file. I then exported the graphics and converted them to JPGs. Finally, I pointed my desktop in OS X to the folder with all the images in it, and told it to change backgrounds randomly every minute.

I can already see an improvement in my ability to recognize the characters, which was something I was struggling with before. 

I'm such a nerd. :-)

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