"How do you say, 'the Woz' in Chinese?" Brendan asked. Inspiration had struck and he was sitting in the corner scribbling away furiously at an idea for a dialogue. "I don't think that's Elementary," Dave chimed in, but I'd guess it would be Wo-ze or something. Check the dictionary."

And so it began. In this Elementary lesson we'll teach you how to say Apple computer in Chinese, and review a number of adjectives that are useful for describing laptop computers like the Mac Air. Then Brendan spends some valuable on-air time prostrating himself before the mighty Gods of Cupertino. Because revolutionizing the user interface is worth a podcast, right?
 said on
April 9, 2009
nice podcast. I'm definitely making progress, but it would be better if you actually taught us how to say Wozniak in this one. A Google search suggests:

斯蒂芬·沃兹尼克 (Steven Wozniak)
 said on
April 9, 2009
You used the word 屏幕 to describe a computer screen.

I want to know if there is a difference between a screen for a computer, and a screen for a cell phone or even a TV screen for that matter.

I often see vendors on the street selling screen protection for cell phones, and they use the sentence 专业贴屏保.

@Dave

What is the word for "incompatible" because that is the first word I want use in China when describing my Mac.

河南一个平果店,一个星巴克,都没有

 said on
April 9, 2009
@Anthony - I'd go with 不兼容 for incompatible, but should really punt to Echo on that one. 屏保 would presumably be short for 屏幕保护 (screen protection). Just like 环保 is short for 环境保护.

Totally separate note, Loretta Chao's China Journal for the WSJ has some great photos of the new Apple store in Beijing, for those of you who haven't been lucky enough to see it in person. It's the company's flagship effort in China and just opened last year. Looks a LOT better than the ones we have back in Toronto, so it seems the company is putting together a good China team. Better late than never.
 said on
April 9, 2009
Echo and Brendan's example sentences in the middle of the grammar explanation are very useful (“屏幕很大”, ”屏幕很宽“, ”她一定很年轻吧“ etc. in this lesson). Have you guys considered integrating these into the lesson page somehow as "supplementary vocab" or something? Some users may be interested in seeing the annotated text for these sentences...
 said on
April 10, 2009
@paglino9,

You can use 屏幕 to describe the screen for a computer, cell phone or television. David also has already given away a very good explanation of 屏保.

For the word "incompatible", I would say 不兼容 or 不支持. Both correct. The way to use them is different though. Here are some examples: “我的电脑操作系统和这个软件不兼容”--“和/跟/与...不兼容”; “我的电脑操作系统不支持这个软件”。

@toneandcolor,

Thank you for your advice. It's an option. We'll see what we can do :)

--Echo

echo@popupchinese.com
 said on
April 10, 2009
I didn't catch what the addiction was!

I think in a real realistic conversation the first thing the person would have said would be 多少钱?

Whenever a Chinese friend sees a new purchase, this is usually the first thing they ask. Sometimes even something like a haircut.
 said on
April 10, 2009
and there you are in cosmopolitan Shanghai... Brendan's addiction is to fancy Apple electronics. I can attest to this myself, having seen the man run through two or three iPhones already.
 said on
April 11, 2009
补充例句 Supplementary sentences from this lesson:

using 很 [hěn] with adjectives

屏幕很大。[píngmù hěn dà] The screen is really big.

屏幕很宽。[píngmù hěn kuān] The screen is really wide.

屏幕很小。[píngmù hěn xiǎo] The screen is really small.

using 一定 [yídìng]with 吧 [ba]

她一定很年轻吧。[tā yídìng hěn niánqīng ba] She must be really young.

这个一定很好吃吧。 [zhè ge yídìng hěn hǎochī ba. ] This must be really tasty.

 said on
April 12, 2009
Speaking of things Apple, the iPhone apps store has several chinese flashcard applications. Has anyone tried any of them, and if so, any recommendations?
 said on
April 12, 2009
@pbigelowslc - Brendan would be the one to ask. I am sadly iPhone-less at the moment. Maybe hell have some suggestions. though
 said on
April 12, 2009
@maxiewawa,

hehe, we only ask our close friends about the price, and there are 2 reasons for this: 1st, i want to buy one, too; 2nd, we don't care how much it is. we ask for the price just like we say 你(nǐ)吃(chī)了(le)吗(ma)?actually we don't care if you have eaten or not.
 said on
April 12, 2009
@Gail, when my Chinese friends ask me about the price of something, I can't shake the feeling there's a sort of lascivious desire to find out how much I was fleeced *this* time.

I actually don't mind paying slightly higher prices, since I figure that's a fair trade for the pretty unequal earning opportunities here for bilingual speakers. But it still sucks to be ripped off by a lot which is why this question ALWAYS makes me really insecure.
 said on
April 13, 2009
@marco64,

keep cool. some times i would say: 不(bú)记得(jìde)了(le),or, 朋友(péngyou)送(sòng)的(de),我(wǒ)也(yě)不(bù)清楚(qīngchǔ)。hehe...just like in the dialogue....
 said on
April 13, 2009
@marco64,

20 or 30 years ago, people would ask: hey, how much money do you make per month?

we are so lucky nowadays...o(∩_∩)o...
 said on
April 13, 2009
@pbigelowslc I haven't tried any of the flashcard apps, I'm afraid. I know Pleco is planning to come out with an iPhone app soon that will presumably include its flashcard functionality, but that may be overkill if you're just after flashcards and not a dictionary. There's an app called StudyArcade that allows for syncing with Anki, but I've got no idea whether or not it's any good.
 said on
April 13, 2009
Pleco sent out an email a while back stating that the initial release of Pleco for the iPhone will probably not include the flashcard functionality in order to get it out sooner. You can also use Anki's web version through mobile safari. The benefit of this, is that you can have the same set of flashcards on both your phone and your computer.
 said on
April 13, 2009
@imron - Yeah, I got that, but then seem to remember hearing that following Apple's announcement of some of the features for iPhone OS 3.0 (especially the in-app payment features), Mike was working on putting in flashcards after all. I may be wrong here -- flashcards aren't a feature I've ever used, and I kind of got a bit irritated after I heard that the iPhone version of Pleco wouldn't support custom dictionaries. Not sure whether or not that's still the case, and I can certainly understand why they'd be worried about copyright violations, but the lack of a custom dictionary feature more or less renders the software uninteresting from my perspective.
 said on
May 13, 2009
-67yrs old > elementary level > so far using pinyin only > love chinese culture and food

> goal - everyday conversational ability > to keep my brain active

- happy to have found your site(meiyou zuihao zhiyou genghao) better than the others, you are!

- when attempting to use shi.. de sentence structure - is shi mostly position at beginning of sentence (as per above ex..)not so clear for me so, a few other examples would be appreciated

- yiding..ba structure is clear... enjoyed the lesson thanks
 said on
May 13, 2009
@paar72 - welcome to the site. subjects typically go at the beginning of sentences (before or after time markers). the subject is the notebook. it's omitted in the dialogue but fully implied. it would be fine to say:

这个笔记本是我男朋友给我买的。

the 是 ... 的 structure puts extra emphasis on whatever falls in between the two characters. it adds focus and emphasis to the sentence. I don't know if that's really Elementary level, but they shoot a bit above the curve here.

cheers
 said on
May 13, 2009
ya a bit of a challenge > is this shi..de structure important for me to learn early? > any simple example i can better understand it's use (pinyin if possible) > have you made a gather of useful(common)sentence structures in one lesson for beginners/elementary level?

thanks for your time

 said on
May 13, 2009
@toneandcolor - Thank-you for providing us with the supplementary vocabulary. You have saved me a lot of time and frustration.
 said on
May 13, 2009
'啦‘ 什么意思?It was used in the first sentence but wasn't explained. The same character was used in the podcast 'An Unholy Smell' and wasn't explained there either. :(
 said on
May 13, 2009
@doubt616

啦 [la] is usually a spoken contraction of 了 [le] and 啊 [a]. It's used whenever these two modal particles occur in fast speech. In this case, it's the combination of the aspect 了 (to indicate the laptop was bought) and the modal 啊 (which indicates surprise, excitement etc.)

 said on
May 13, 2009
@toneandcolor - I think I understand. So 啦 conveys both a completed action and adds a little emotion to it as well?
 said on
May 13, 2009
@toneandcolor - 非常感谢!
 said on
May 13, 2009
@paar72,

Welcome to popupchinese. shi...de structure is a bit hard for elementary students, but we use it everyday, you need not to understand: 这个笔记本是我男朋友给我买的now, but you need to understand: 这(zhè)本(běn)书(shū)是(shì)他(tā)给(gěi)我(wǒ)的(de)。

enjoy your time here at popupchinese.
 said on
May 13, 2009
@Gail - Does your example for paar72 mean 'He gave me this book.'?
 said on
May 13, 2009
@doubt616,

yes, exactly.
 said on
May 13, 2009
@Gail - very tricky this. so, since native speakers use it everyday i think i better make an extra effort to learn shi..de

it's only use for a completed action or purpose correct? what if i want ask a question about a completed action >

where did you buy this? who gave you this?would you personally auto-use shi..de

or a statement like > i did not say that(an attempt at this > na bu shi wo shuo de

sounds complicated to my ear!

 said on
May 14, 2009
@paar72,

是...的 is used to emphasize sth between it, and it turns it into an adjective. You can put a word, a phrase or even a short sentence in it.

where did you buy this? 你是在哪儿买的这个?/这个你是在那儿买的?

who gave you this? 这个是谁给你的?

--Echo

echo@popupchinese.com

 said on
June 6, 2009
seems the button for line two of the yext is "stuck"...seems occasioanlly various vocab terms or lines of the text are stuck on either the text or vocab pages of different lessons...is it just me? its usually just one or two of the buttons if at all...
 said on
December 28, 2011
Just a thought:

In the dialogue, the apple girl says, "是我男朋友给我买的“ and it's translated as, "I got my boyfriend to buy it for me."

Doesn't it simply mean, "My boyfriend bought it for me"??

Maybe I'm thinking too much, but there has to be a different structure for "got" him to do something, as in to convince.
 said on
December 28, 2011
@itsanthonyhere,

You could understand this phrase as literally, "It's what my boyfriend bought for me.", or "it's (the thing) that my boyfriend bought for me."

In Chinese, in many cases 的 works like our attributive clause.

EG:

穿着白衣服的帅哥就是我的男朋友。

The handsome guy who's wearing white clothes is my boyfriend.

老是发脾气的老师被大学炒鱿鱼了。

The teacher that's always losing his temper was fired by the university.

In Chinese, 让 doesn't exactly mean to convince, it just means that you make someone do something, with or without their wholehearted consent. It's funny that 让 can equate to the English, to make (or to get), and also the English, to let, which are different concepts altogether in English.

In Chinese, if you want to express "convince", then you should use, 说服, which is pronounced shui4 fu2. Here the character, 说 is a 多音字 duo1 yin1 zi4, meaning a word with multiple readings. Although many Chinese people will still say shuo1 fu2.

 said on
May 17, 2012
甲 好。嗯,一定很贵吧? hǎo 。 ng , yīdìng hěn guì ba ? OK. It must have been pretty expensive, right?

That was taken from the transcript of this lesson. What does N and G mean? That is they are kind of pinyin I don't know i'm not sure that it's correct and I was wondering about the correct pronunciation?
 said on
May 17, 2012
@seamus5,

"Ng" is the standard pronunciation of “嗯” in 《现代汉语词典》(The Contemporary Chinese Dictionary). A lot of Chinese people write it as "en5" too. However, the former one is standard.

--Echo

echo@popupchinese.com

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