Learning a language is a long-term investment because it opens the door to a whole new world of opportunity. Yet many of us do not have the time to master a new language beyond what we learn in school. The many commitments we have ranging from work to family make language learning a near impossibility. Firefox has introduced a new extension which exploits the amount of time people spend browsing the web to learn a new language. LongLadder has a useful array of features to help expand the vocabulary of language learners.

Learners can refine their language skills by gradually adding new vocabulary to their repertoire through LongLadder. The language learning process is facilitated by the integrated language translation tool (Google translate), built in search suggestions in foreign and native languages, bookmark tool, and flashcard tool. Users can browse websites of foreign languages online and select words to be included in their learning list. The vocabulary list popup in the sidebar will give definitions of the words and how they are used in sentences using Google Translate. These words will be saved in the built-in flashcard system and learners can test their memory as they progress in their language learning. The flashcard tool also keeps track of learners’ quiz performance.

LongLadder enables individuals to learn at their own pace and according to their ability. While making lists of words may seem rather passé, the combination of personalised learning with built-in record-keeping tools help to motivate learners to acquire a particular language more effectively.