Gabriel Wyner is NOT a Robot (A conversation with Gabriel Wyner)

Welcome to Creative Language Learning Podcast episode 68, and this time it's an interview with Gabriel (Gabe) Wyner.

Gabriel is well known to many language learners thanks to his bestselling book "Fluent Forever". In this interview, you will get to know the story of "Fluent Forever", the approach he takes to language learning, and a little bit about what makes him tick as a person.

He and I have been in touch for around 4 years, but this is the first time in a long time that I got the opportunity to speak to him on record.

You can support the Fluent Forever app

After Kickstarter, Gabriel is running a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to continue to hit the rest of the stretch goals for more languages.

If -- like me -- you would love Fluent Forever to work for lots more than just a few languages, then hop on there and see how you can support the app.

There are rewards, too!

  • early app access as soon as the app is out
  • pronunciation trainers and word lists that you can use immediately to engineer that brain of yours
  • a lifetime discount at any funding level
  • more good stuff you can check out here

Maximum Efficiency in Language Learning

The theme I saw come through in Gabe's approach was that of engineering language learning to be as efficient and productive as it can possibly be. He's an engineer by trade and it shows in how he approaches language learning: find the problem, find a way to solve it, set, and go.

It made me curious about his human side, so we also discussed where he finds the joy in learning. Beyond the app, I also took the opportunity to ask Gabe about the inner monologue of self-doubt, and courage in creation and in language learning.

But that is not all we talked about...we also discussed what this app is all about

In our interview touched on..

  • how Gabe's own experience of creating over 45,000 (!) flash cards in Anki is going to make language learning so much more efficient
  • what it's like to have created a book that more than 120,000 people have read
  • why the Fluent Forever method started with pronunciation training...then progressed via word lists...and is now ready to take app-based learning to a new level
  • the big, obvious, annoying problem of using ready-made flashcards (this is why you won't remember words)
  • the place for apps in everyday language learning -- is immersion better than apps? is an app better than immersion? Do language learners have to do everything at the same time?
  • how the Fluent Forever has standing based on actual science (and a research book tip if you want to find out more)
  • what to do when you're too scared to start speaking to someone in your target language
  • a Q&A on learning two languages at the same time, where the Fluent Forever app is headed after its HUGE Kickstarter success, and what rewards there are for you when you pledge to support its big Crowdfunding campaign
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