Japanese Resources

Japanese Lesson Update Week 4

I just finished my 4th week’s lesson and all the sudden I feel like the learning is about to get serious. Why is this? Well. we started to talk about Hiragana with Diacritical Marks, Transcribing Contracted Sounds, double consonants, and finally long vowels.

My instructor directed me to new course materials.

Genki -An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese Book

Personally, I found the Diacritical Marks the ga,gi,gu,ge,go… the hardest to pronounce. That is because it doesn’t pronounce like a G, but another sound that I can’t quite describe.

Japanese Resources

First online lesson

Few years ago, I decided I want to take some Japanese classes, so I decided to sign up for an intro Japanese class at the local community college. I thought that would be a great idea and was hopeful to jump start my language learning. Unfortunately, that was not the case. The problem with learning from CC instructor, was that she was teaching the language to Americans and she was teaching the language using romaji only. With works sound like Chinese, it really was very difficult. So when I am ready to try again, I want to find an instructor that can speak Chinese (from Taiwan), English, and Japanese. The reason for the three language requirement is because I think this will be the best to help me find the short cut to pick up the new language. So the question is how do I do that?

Enters Amazing Talker !!!

So there are couple of online language learning sites, but I decided to go with Amazing Talker because of my research based on youtube. Also because of the number of Taiwanese Chinese speakers that are instructors on Amazing Talker. So with that said, I signed up for a trial and gave it a shot. So yesterday was my first lesson.

The first lesson was only 25 minutes instead of 50, but it get you an introduction to the instructor. As I stated in my previous post, I’ve been self studying the Japanese phonics for a while and I thought with my flash cards and APPs I was doing well. However, when I was working with the instructor, I realized that I don’t know anything. I guess it is the pressure of speaking in front of another person, I would panic and stress trying to identify the characters and sounds.

All in all the first lesson ended pretty quickly, mostly cover the basic sounds and also did some basic writing. The instructor provide homework to work on my writing skill and understanding skills. As for the effectivensess of Amazing Talker? I don’t know yet. I will keep you guys updated.

But if you want to give it a try yourself, try using my link below. The link will give you $20 credit which means intro session will be FREE!!! and it also give me $10 credit so I can continue my quest!!

CLICK HERE FOR $20 to Amazing Talker!!

Japanese Resources

Learning tools for Japanese

So the year is 2019, I don’t have to learn Japanese like it’s 1985, that was when I was learning English. (with flash cards and listening to cassettes over and over. So let’s look at some of the modern tools that I am currently using to help me with my quest to learn Japanese.

The current immediate goal is to able to read and understand the basic phonics, in other words, read Hiragana (平仮名) and Katakana (片仮名).

So I decide to do the following:

Duolingo – app on my iphone
MEMRISE – 2nd app on my iphone

I am using the free version of both apps currently. I am still seeing if it is worthwhile to do the paid version or not. Stay tuned for an update.

Flash Cards
Originally, I was planning on doing some old flashing index cards, but since I had some printable business cards, I figure why not create a flash card with these printable business cards and guess what, they turned out amazing!!! So the best part is that the PDF is below and feel free to use them.

Also if you need the printable business cards, just buy them below.
Avery Printable Business Card (5871)

Let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Update (7-23-2019):

Flash cards!!!
CISSP Resources

CISSP Study Updates: vBookz vs. Voice Dream

I am 4 Chapters in to the Shon Harris’ CISSP all in one book, I’ve been getting 60% to 70% on the end of the chapter question answers on the first try.  Few initial thoughts are as follows.

The Shon Harris’ book is good with lots of material, but her writing style is very wordy and long winded and her humor is not really my style and isn’t that funny.   I feel sometimes that I know that there is a structure, but there are cases where it seems that we are just off to a tangent.   Don’t get me wrong, it was still relevant, but  just off to a tangent.  There are other times where I feel that the book has alot of repetition and not very efficient in the ways of communicating the 10 main domains.  But then again there are a lot of over lapping materials with in the 10 different domains.   With all that that said, there are a lot of great materials in the book and I think it will be a great reference book after I am done with the CISSP exam.

So this week, I was a bit behind on my reading… so I added 2 additional resources to help with my preparation.

1)  Because of how long it takes to get through Shon Harris’ book, I decided to try out Eric Conrad’s CISSP Study Guide.  I’ve already got the 11th hour study guide, but I thought I would give the regular study guide a go.

CAUTION: The domain numbers are different than the All-In-One Book.  all domains are covered, but the domain numbers are different.  So be careful when you talk about the domains just by itself.  Always refer to the actual domain name, for example Access Control Domain.

The initial thought is that the book is a lot thinner and not as wordy.I think it is a good supplement to my CISSP study.  So the current goal is use the All-in-One as the primary path and using the different supplementary resources to help me out.

2) CISSP Meet up

Last Thursday, I joined a CISSP meet up group to meet with a small group of folks to chat about CISSP and get me to be more focused on my studies.  It’s a very small group but they all seem to be very nice.  I hope we all pass in the near future.

3) So on an earlier post, I talked about using a text to speech app to help me get through the books.  Well, I have to say, after about 2 chapters with vBookz voice reader, I was very disappointed.  Here’s why.

  • Constant crashing and slow down on certain section of the pdf file.
  • Acronyms … it is very annoying how inconsistent vBookz reads acronyms… some time it reads as it sound, sometime it reads letter by letter, and sometime it even replace the acronym with a word. (e.g. CA vbookz will read California when in context CA was meaning  certificate authority.  Is there any ways to set how vbookz will read acronyms?  If it is all read as letters I would be fine with that… but it is just the inconsistency that is bothering to me and hard to understand.
  • split words. In my document there are alot of words that are split from line to line with – (dash). so for example the word “individuals” is split between two lines so it is now individu-als.  vBookz reads it as two word.  I can understand it most of the time but there are times where it doesn’t make sense.
  • bullets.  when vbookz reads a bullet list … it is just unbearable, small ..small bullet … abc  .. small bullet etc… on and on …
  • Page numbers and Header and Footers… there is no way for vBookz to skip any text, so when you are listening to the page it will inject the next page’s header and number and continue to read on.  It’s pretty disruptive

vBookzvsVoice Dream App

So after emailing the author and looking around for alternatives, I decided to drop another $10 and try Voice dream app.  Oh my gosh, it was night and day!!!

I only wish I found this sooner.  This app actually took care of most of the concerns I had.

  • It automatically joined all split words.
  • It has a pronunciation dictionary that let you set  how you want words or acronyms pronounced.
  • It let you skip text so things like headers and footers can be skipped
  • It lets you use RegEx to define the filter for things to skip … so now I can also skip all the page numbers!!
  • Bonus: it treats the document like an audio file.  It tells you how much time until the end and how much time was read already
  • Bonus: it can be controlled like an audio file with earphone remote, etc
  • Bonus: Works with dropbox and icloud

All in all it is a very well designed app and a WINNER between the two different apps.

However, it does have a few bugs in this version, which I communicated to the app author and he agreed to look into it.   I will update this blog, if I see my suggestions updated.

I think it was worth the $10 price tag for this app.  This voice reader app was  much more refined and well thought out voice reader app than vBookz.

So all in all… I am slowing moving along the certification studying process for CISSP and it is sticky and nasty.

CISSP Resources

More study help and downloading flash streaming podcast as mp3s

So I am really bad at trying to stop looking for more ways to getting free training information and start studying more… so I will share what I’ve found.

I thinks these overview should not be your primary study material, but it is good to listen to refresh what you read or to get your feet wet on each one of the domains.

First more free video training.

Based on Shon Harris’s CISSP All-in-One book is a FREE 10 video overview for each domain by SearchSecurity.

Just scroll to the bottom and click on the video.  You will need to provide a valid email address. Oh and also videos 6-10 are in the links in the comment of each video page.


Second, as I mentioned in my previous post, based on Eric Conrad’s CISSP study guide there is a 10 audio podcast.

So the problem with Eric Conrad’s CISSP audio podcast is that the audio files are streamed in a flash application and my iphone doesn’t support flash and most of your web plugins such as FVD downloader in Chrome extension doesn’t detect the audio files, so I can’t download it that way.  So since this is a security / hacking blog the following is a tip.

tl; dr.  USE rtmpdump

So how I found this solution is as follows:

1. In Chrome, I used inspect element and resources tab. Look under

podcast.php / XHR / mp3_playlistXML.xml

I found this

So each line in the xml fine shows the location of each file and it is streamed by RTMP

For example first podcast,

<videoname flvurl="rtmp://"desc="Podcast 1 - Domain 1"/>

2. So I found RTMPDump.  RTMP = Real Time Messaging Protocol

and in short

 rtmpdump -r "rtmp://" -o domain01.mp3

And repeat for all the other domains and mp3s.  There you go.  I hope it helps.

CISSP Resources

Free CISSP Class from IT Masters and Charles Sturt University in Australia

Amazing!!!Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

IT Masters and Charles Sturt University in Australia is offering, free, a six weeks online course designed to prepare students for the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) Security Certification.  This type of course is typically around $1500 to  $3800 US.

The course will run over six weeks starting from Wednesday July, 17 2013 (tomorrow) with lectures via weekly 90 minute webinars from 12:30 -14:00 hours AEST (7:30 pm PDT) each Wednesday.  Because of the high demand they are also opening a second class from 15:00-16:30 AEST (10:00 pm PDT) .  The classes will be available for video download if you can’t make the actual class.   In addition, students will be asked to do a total of 10-12 hours of study between webinars.

So what are you waiting for?  Go register and see you in class!!!



CISSP Study Guides

The following are the two study guides that we are using as the bases for our study guide.  The current plan is to use the following as the primary text for our study full Lights Out 2016 filmwatch full Get Out film

The secondary references that we are using is as follows:

[Updated 2019-06-30 -with links to updated books]