I know this is a Q&A site.. but is it possible to create a central place to dump resources. Or perhaps a type of question that is never "accepted" but just contains a poll of best resource for x.
If you do ask for a list of resources, be very careful how you phrase your question. Open-ended, chatty questions are explicitly discouraged on the Stack Exchange network. In his "Real Questions Have Answers" post, Jeff gives this advice:
You should only ask practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face. Chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of our site and push other questions off the front page.
He suggests you avoid questions where:
- every answer is equally valid: “What’s your favorite ______?”
- there is no actual problem to be solved: “I’m curious if other people feel like I do.”
I'm not saying that you should never ask for a list of suggestions, but when you do, you should ask for something as specific as possible. A source of example sentences, or board games to practice speaking, for example. Avoid vague questions like, "What are some good web sites for learning Chinese?"
I'm also not saying that a list of general resources wouldn't be useful, only that it isn't appropriate on this site. You could start a discussion in the chat room, create a scratchpad wiki, create a Google Doc that everyone can edit, or lots of other collaborative editing web sites.
Generally these sorts of things are relegated to the FAQ page, or in community wiki questions on the main site. I'm not basing the following on precedent, but I'd prefer that the FAQ have a section that answers the "What are some good resources to learn Chinese?" question with a little blurb about how this kind of question is generally a bit off topic, and a link to a community wiki question with resources as answers.
Personally, I don't think Stackexchange sites are a good place for this kind of pages. They tend be quickly outdated, they are indiscriminate, and of course, they are not questions (which is what SE sites are about).
For this kind of resource dump, they are plenty of websites already available and better suited for it - Wikipedia, web directory, blogs, etc.
I, for one, think this isn't such a bad idea. A single centralized question that aggregates all resources in it can be very helpful. I could go under a modified version of this question:
You could change it to "What are the best resources for learning Chinese?" and make it community-wiki. Then have the answer(s) link to books, podcasts, sites, etc.
This would be similar to this grandfathered Stack Overflow question: List of freely available programming books.
This has been created. Check the question Resources for learning Mandarin Chinese
Please report any dead links, provide new resources if you can and help us keeping it clean and updated. If this doesn't work, it's going to be closed, so it's in your best interest!
I'm going to tag this question status-completed. :)
I've gone ahead and created a post for dumping resources.
Hopefully I'm doing it right - I really want something like this, and I think it will be super useful for the community, and hopefully drive some more traffic to the site as well.
Should there be one place to add resources? No.
Should there be many community wikis? Yes.
Why does this Web site close every attempt to create a community wiki? Are the people that use Chinese Language and Usage simply unfamiliar with this concept on Stack Exchange?
- Such community topics are common on the other Stack Exchanges.
- Such topics attract more users.
- Such community topics provide extremely valuable resources.
- Such resources are not found on other wiki Web sites.
This Web site needs various community topics in a wide variety of categories:
- Comprehensive textbook series, taking users to all levels (1 topic).
- Textbook series designed for specific levels or specific areas, such as grammar, pronunciation (separate topics).
- Software-based study tools (1 topic, or separated by specialty).
- Computer games designed especially for language study (1 topic).
- Reference books (1 topic).
- Reference Web sites (1 topic).
- Readers (separate topics for beginner, intermediate, and advanced students).
- Web sites with study material, such as readings, audio, and video (1 topic).
- Mainstream films and TV shows useful for study (e.g. at a low level).
- Mainstream computer games useful for study (e.g. at a low level).