OS X 10.7 or later, 64-bit processor
Age Rating: 4+
One of the biggest hurdles travellers face is learning enough of the local language to get around. Finding trains, toilets, getting directions and learning some basics like greetings, please and thank-you are essential.
Learn French is one of a series of apps from Live Doodles, which also has programs for learning Italian, Arabic and Chinese and several other languages. The free version ships with a limited dictionary of about 200 words with expansion packs of 1500 words costing another $4.49. An in-app purchase of $10.49 buys you all the expansion packs.
As well as providing you with a dictionary for translating words, the app also plays the words out loud using your Mac’s speakers so that you can get the pronunciation right. Even if your accent isn’t perfect at least the locals will know you’re trying. You can narrow down what you’re learning through categories such as amounts, colours, time and communication.
If you’re planning an extended stay, Learn French allows you to take flash card tests so that you can train yourself in memorising words and short phrases. You can choose to be quizzed by the English translation of French words or vice versa.
by Anthony Caruana, Macworld Australia