“…So, I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out okay. It was pretty scary at the time, but, looking back, it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me and begin dropping in on the ones that looked far more interesting…
“Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college, but it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later. Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward. You can only connect them looking backwards. So, you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something—your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever—because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path. · · · →
Chinese has two basic methods of recognizing it’s Asian characters: Phonetic and Strokes. Dictionaries could use one system or the other. If you have the sounds of every character memorized, phonetic may be easier for you. However, if you want to type a character by looking at its appearance—or if you want to type Chinese with a faster typing method—you may want to learn about character components.
There is a wide variety of books that show the evolution of characters, explaining their etymology, and showing different shapes and layouts characters can make. Just like English words have different roots and prefixes and suffixes, so do Chinese and Japanese characters have different sections that can be abbreviated or used interchangeably. Once you learn the basic components of the characters, writing, reading, and typing characters is easier.
Concerning phonetics, there are two main phonetic systems. The first, formally called “bopomofo” (Zhuyin) uses something much like the Hiragana of Japanese. · · · →