Grammar Lesson 4 Korean

Korean expressions part 2

Continuing on with the Korean expressions, here are some more useful ones. We can learn how to express ‘even if something happens’,’decided to do something’,’the more something happens’,’ok to do something’, and ‘worth to do something’.

V + (아/어/여)도
V + (아/어/여)더라도
V + (ㄹ/을)지라도
아무리 + V + (아/어/여)도

1. All of these expressions are related. V + (아/어/여)도/더라도 mean ‘even if’ or ‘even though’ V happens… and (ㄹ/을)지라도 means ‘even if/though’ something will/might happen… adding 아무리 to the beginning means ‘no matter how’ something happens.

공부를 많이 하더라도, 시험을 잘 못 합격해요. – Even though I study a lot, I can’t pass the test.

아무리 비싸도 제가 사 줄게요. – No matter how expensive it is, I’ll buy it for you.

V + 기로 하다

2. V + 기로 하다/했다 is used to express that you decided to do something.

한국에 가을에 가기로 했어요. – I decided to go to Korea in the fall.

V + (어/아/여)도 되다

3. The verb 되다 also means ‘to be ok’. V + (어/아/여)도 되다 is a very useful expression. When used in a statement, it means you can/are allowed to do V (Saying 괜찮아요 also means the same thing). If you used in a question, it means ‘am I allowed to do/do you mind if I do V’? Using the ending 될까요? means ‘will it be ok if I do V’?

한국어로 말해도 돼요. – It’s ok if you speak in Korean.

티비를 봐도 돼요? – Is it ok to watch TV?

음량을 좀 높여도 될까요? – Will it be ok if I turn up the volume?

V + (ㄹ/을) + 만하다

4. Using V + (ㄹ/을) + 만하다 means to be worth doing V.

새로운 영화가 볼 만해요? – Is the new movie worth watching?

새로운 영화가 진짜 볼 만했어요. – The new movie was really worth watching.

V1 + (ㄹ/을)수록 + V2

5. Using V + (ㄹ/을) 수록 means the more V1, the more V2.

생각할수록 더 모르겠다. – The more I think, the more I don’t know.

돈을 많이 벌수록 더 바빠져요. – The more you earn, the busier you get.

V + (아/어/여) 봤자

6. Using this expression indicates that its no use doing something, or it won’t work even if you do something.

가 봤자 시산 낭비예요. – It will be a waste of time even if you go.

Business General School/Work Tech

Hunger games, Korean grammar, and Mobile Computing

Hunger Games

I just finished watching the Hunger Games in theaters. You probably all heard of it by now. I’ve never read the book, so after watching it here’s my thoughts. I think the story seemed like it jumped a long too fast, a common problem when adapting books to movies. Some characters are not fleshed out at all. There’s gore in the movie even though its PG-13. but overall it was an okay movie. If you’ve watched Twilight and Harry Potter, there’s more of the same teenage fiction here, though somewhat more mature. I still can’t help thinking the book should have been written with an Asian American or Hispanic American lead. The movie felt like it was out of the 1950s. I mean, mostly Caucasian crowd with some scattering of African Americans. If this takes place in the future United States, wouldn’t white people be a minority by then? But I’m sure even if the book did have Asians, Hollywood would never cast an Asian American actor for a blockbuster film, of course not. Though I might add that the Asian American community is really looking for a rolemodel right now. What Jeremy Lin has demonstrated is that Asians are underrepresented, and overlooked by media, and we should strive to have more Asians out there doing creative arts like acting and performing, and being athletes, rather than being the usual business people / scientists / engineers / etc that are not prominent in the media.

Korean Grammer

Still some outstanding questions about Korean grammar.

-what does adding -ㄴ to a verb do? ie. 한다vs하다, 가다vs간다

-what does adding -긴 do?

-difference between 이야 and 이니?

-내가 vs 나는?

-겠다 vs 거야 vs 야지 for future tense (will do)

-what does adding -지 do? like 하는지,하지서 vs 하면,하지면

-what does adding -나 and -까 do?

-무슨 vs 뭐?

I’m studying Korean.
‎1. 난 한국어를 공부해.
2. 난 한국어를 공부하고 있어.
3. 난 한국어를 공부하지.
4. 난 한국어를 공부한다. (more for writing).

I’ll study Korean.
1. 난 한국어를 공부해야지.
2. 난 한국어를 공부할 거에요.
3. 난 한국어를 공부할거야.
4. 난 한국어를 공부할게.
5. 난 한국어를 공부할래.
6. 난 한국어를 공부하겠어.

I should study Korean
1. 난 한국어를 공부해야 돼.

I studied Korean.
1. 난 한국어를 공부했어.

나는 사과를 먹었어.
나는 사과를 먹었는데.
나는 사과를 먹었잖아.
나는 사과를 먹었지.
나는 사과를 먹었다고.

Mobile Computing Trends

There’s a good article on mobile computing right here:

Basically it talks about the future of mobile computing. We know that mobile apps and mobile web content will continue to grow at a rate faster than PCs did. But I think this article draws its results primarily from research done in the US. The USA is not a proxy for the rest of the world. We are the richest country in the world, and that explains part of the reason why mobile penetration and mobile content consumption is so high here. The key to get from this is that feature phones are still widely used in developing nations in Asia, Latin America and Africa. Those emerging markets are where most of the growth is going to be. Thus to make smartphones more popular, we should focus on making them more affordable to everyone. Once that happens, I can imagine many more apps designed and interpreted with multilingual use, and locale-specific implementations. Right now China is one of Apple’s biggest consumers, and they will only get bigger. In fact, the mindset we have to adopt for the future is not only to cater to US consumers (where the majority of smartphone users live) but to the rest of the world as well. In time, I believe this is what will happen.

On a side note, ever wonder why Chinese sites look so different than American sites? Look at or and you can see that its very cluttered and alot of information on once page. Contrast this with the simpler web 2.0-style interfaces that American sites use, a la Twitter or Foursquare. I wonder what would happen if we take some American apps (most of which deliver content through the cloud) and port it over to China? How would sites like or or be perceived if we make a chinese version and locale specific? That would be interesting to find out, and a good opportunity as well.


Update: Learning Korean

Update: new, more indepth korean grammar post here.

So a couple posts back, I described how I was beginning to learn Korean, an exciting new language that is both similar yet different from Chinese. So far, I’ve found that although I’ve progressed, I haven’t progressed as quickly as I had when I first started.

The biggest difficulty I have with Korean is that there are just so many particles, so many verb conjugations, and so many ways of saying something using different characters. Its easier when I read Korean, but orally, when someone is speaking Korean fast (like at my church), it becomes very hard to determine what they are saying because first I have to process the context and then what sounds they are using. The double consonants (ㅃ,ㅉ,ㄸ,ㄲ,ㅆ) are very hard to differentiate for me from the single ones. And some words can be completely different if they are using double consonants or single consonants.

And there are alot of particles. The straightforward particles are the topic, subject and object particles. 저는 is the normal way of saying ‘I’ the first time you introduce yourself (‘는’ being the topic particle). But this is a rather formal way of doing it. 나는 is the more plain way of saying it. Of course some Korean words are only used in writing, rather than speech. ‘와/과’ is used more often than ‘하고’ in writing for the word ‘and/with’. And verb conjugations. There are so many irregular verbs, verbs that have silent letters in them, etc. I pretty much just have to memorize which ones are which. The conjugations can be fairly simple like 먹다 -> 먹어요 for the polite form of ‘to eat’ or more irregular like 크다 -> 커요 for ‘to be tall’, with one of the consonants, 으, removed when its conjugated.

And here is a general list of particles I have to remember:
-subject particle: -이/가, to denote subject noun.
-topic particle: -은/는, to denote topic noun.
-plural particle: -들, to emphasize plurality on a noun.
-object particle: -을/를, to denote noun being acted on by a verb.
-case particle: -으로/로 , to denote a noun is being used (by,with), or direction, or selection, or change.
-possession particle: -의, to denote possession between two nouns.
-location particles: -에, which can denote place, time or quantity. -에서, which indicates a dynamic location or source of action.
-conjunction particles: -와/과,-하고, to link two nouns together.
-special particle: -도, which adds the meaning of also/too/even to a noun.
-special particle: -만, which adds the meaning of just/only to a noun.
-special particle: -이나/나, which means something similar/or/as many as/about.
-special particle: -부터,까지 which means from a time/place to another time/place.

Verb particles
-으면/면, which adds the meaning ‘if’ to a verb.
-고, which adds the meaning ‘and’ to a verb.
-거나, which adds meaning ‘or’ to a verb.
-지만, which adds meaning ‘but’ to a verb.
-는, which turns a verb into a present noun modifier. (-ㄴ/은 for past, -ㄹ/을 for future).
-ㄴ/는, which turns an adjective into a present noun modifier.  (-ㄴ/은 for past, -ㄹ/을 for future).

See, that’s a lot of particles. Chinese only has a few (的,得,地,着,被,给,对,向,跟,和,与). In addition, I don’t have opportunity to practice Korean alot. But anyways… here’s hoping I can improve enough to go to Korea next year.