So yes, I skipped a week in lesson reviews. One lesson I had to cancel because of unfortunate events and the other lesson I had a complete blank-out for the entire duration which was a really embarrassing experience. Either way, I’m back this week and I will be talking about V -(으)러 and A/V -(으)ㄴ/는데요.

V -(으)러
This grammar pattern is used to add a purpose for a movement (going or coming to a place). Therefore only movement verbs such as 가다, 오다 and 다니다 are used with this pattern.

Verb stem ending with vowel or ㄹ Verb stem ending with consonant
러 가다/오다/다니다 으러 가다/오다/다니다


1 I went to the hospital to see a doctor.
의사를 보 병원에 갔어요
2 I am going to the meeting to present my research.
제 리서치를 제출하 회의에 갈 거예요
3 I came home to look for my mobile phone.
제 휴대전화를 찾으러 집에 왔어요.

A/V -(으)ㄴ/는데요
Talking about this grammar pattern is a little more difficult because for as far as I know, this can mean a lot of different things. Today however I will use it as a connective form to indicate that there is more information following.

Present tense Past tense
Action verb Descriptive verb Action verb & Descriptive verb
Verb stem + 는데요 Verb stem + ㄴ/은데요 Verb stem + 았/었는데요


1 I met that friend when I was in Korea, we met at a restaurant.
한국에 있을 때 그 친구를 만났는데요, 식당에서 만났어요.
2 I play League of Legends, way too much.
리그오브레전드를 하는데요, 너무 많이 해요
3 I woke up early in the morning, I had to go to school.
아침에 일찍 일어났는데요, 학교에 가야 했어요.

With all the recommendations for twoChois all around me I had to check it out for myself right? What to get though?

I contacted the Dutch Korean embassy a couple weeks back asking for more information on how to sign-up for the TOPIK as a Dutch citizen. This is because we lack a testing site in our own country, which isn’t really that surprising. I was told that I was able to just sign-up in another country so that would be either Germany, France of the UK.

With a proper TOPIK preparation in mind I browsed through some of the other self-study bloggers and found that apparently Sogang 1A & 1B are on par with TOPIK Level 1-2 (+ Sogang 2A to be safe). I believe that at least 1A is below my level and I’m either around the end of 1B or beginning of 2A.

Putting my current level aside I felt it wasn’t bad practice to just start it from the beginning so I orderd Sogang 1A & 1B + Workbooks from twoChois for starters.


The delivery was fast and it was neatly packaged with some free goodies including a cute thank you note. The process of ordering on their site was smooth too. When I initially made a mistake in the payment process this was also quickly resolved without hassle within 24 hours. I appreciate that a lot.

Having gone through the first few chapters of Sogang 1A I might do a book review on it even though I believe there are already more than enough. What I am quite happy about though is that 1A is far too easy for me. Now if only I could find something to increase my vocabulary by a lot. So tempting…

I actually feel it’s better for me to do these reviews a day or two before my next lesson instead of on the same day right after the lesson. Therefore I will probably shuffle a few days around. Let’s get to the important stuff though, my last lesson.

문법 (Grammar)
Another lesson focused mostly on new grammar with daily conversations. “V는/은/ㄴ지” was our grammar point, which is a connective ending used when connecting a clause requiring additional information to the following verb. Corresponding to “who/what/where/when/how/whether + clause”.

It generally precedes one of the following verbs, (referenced from Korean Grammar In Use):

  • 알다
  • 모르다
  • 궁금하다
  • 질문하다
  • 조사하다
  • 알아보다
  • 생각나다
  • 말하다
  • 가르치다

The two verbs in bold are the only verbs we used in the lesson. Like my previous iTalki review I will include a table with the patterns for both present and past tense action and descriptive verbs.

Present tense Past tense
Action verb Descriptive verb Action verb Descriptive verb
Verb stem + 는지 Verb stem + 은/ㄴ지 Verb stem + 았/었는지

The main exercise was to create sentences asking whether the person knows something, rather than asking directly. For example asking if they know where the bookstore is rather than directly asking where it is.

Examples in steps:

Do you know where the bookstore is?
English Korean
to be where 어디이다
bookstore 책방이
Where is the bookstore? 책방이 어디예요?
(I) know where 어디인지 알아요.
Final Korean sentence
책방이 어디인지 알아요?
Do you know who emailed me?
English Korean
emailed 이메일을 했다
someone 누가
Somebody emailed me. 누가 이메일을 했어요.
Who emailed me? 누가 이메일을 했어요?
Final Korean sentence
누가 이메일을 했는지 아세요?
Don’t you know where my wallet is?
English Korean
my wallet 제 지갑이
where 어디에
to exist / to be located 있다.
Don’t you know? 몰라요? / 모르세요?
Don’t you know where it is? 어디에 있는지 모르세요?
Final Korean sentence
제 지갑이 어디에 있는지 모르세요?

It’s took me quite a while to get a good grasp of this and how to use it but hopefully I can start using this soon.

Two posts in one day?! This would be my Programming knowledge bomb that was scheduled for yesterday.

Here is the continuation on my Hangul in Unicode series. In this new section I am explaining how to compose proper Hangul Syllables using the individual jamo and a wonderful equation. I also updated the original Hangul in Unicode page to include a small introduction to what Unicode actually is for those not familiar.

Forming Hangul Syllables in Unicode

Having a weekend like mine, (a little crazy), just after releasing a schedule makes it a little embarrassing for me but I will still post what I put out to do. So here we go, the first iTalki Lesson Review.

문법 (Grammar)
The focus of my previous lesson and this lesson has been on verbs being converted into adjectives. Referred to in Korean Grammar in Use (Beginner) as: “관형형 -(으)ㄴ/-는/-(으)ㄹ N”

For now I will skip the future tense part because we did not cover that yet. Below is a table with the tenses and their action / descriptive verb patterns.

Present tense Past tense
Action verb Descriptive verb Action verb Descriptive verb
Verb stem + 는 Verb stem + 은/ㄴ Verb stem + 은/ㄴ

We’ve covered quite a few of the patterns up until an introduction to the past tense descriptive verb. From my current understanding there are multiple patterns that can be used to transform descriptive verbs into past tense adjectives. The one I got introduced to is -던.

So when researching this more I found out that this is already outside of the scope of beginner’s Korean grammar. I found more about this on Page 144 of Korean Grammar in Use (Intermediate) in the chapter “Expressing recollection”. It seems like -던 is not exclusively used to convert past tense descriptive verbs to adjectives but can be used in a large variety of other situations. For now it is probably best to exclusively use it for the only purpose I know though.

Examples of -던 (to make past tense descriptive verbs into adjectives)

Sentence Present tense adjective Past tense adjective
1 This flower is pretty A pretty flower A flower that used to be pretty
이 꽃은 예뻐요 예쁜 꽃 예쁘
2 A friend who was tired A tired friend A friend that used to be tired
친구가 피곤했어요 피곤한 친구 피곤하 친구
3 The weather was bad The bad weather The weather that used to be bad
날씨가 나빴어요 나쁜 날씨 나쁘 날씨

Lastly I might just as well add in the new vocabulary that came up in the lesson. I’m currently thinking of writing a small WordPress plugin that will contain all the vocabulary I know. It will probably be nicely listed including dates of when I learned it, how well I know it, etc. I have some (in my opionion) cool ideas for it.

어휘 (Vocabulary)

Korean English
후식 Dessert
새우 Shrimp
건조 Dryness
건조기 / 드라이어 Dryer
원피스 Dress (not gowns or party dress)
검은색 Black (color)
짧다 To be short
길다 To be long
계획 A plan
계획을 세우다 To make a plan

Due to poor time management (as always) I had to struggle in the final weeks towards the exam week to get things going. Fortunately I think I did quite well and hope to pass my courses this block. What it does mean is that Korean has been on the side, again -_-“.

Personally I think it is time for me to release an official schedule, here on the internet. That means that if I do not follow said schedule the internet will come and get me! Right?

Day Subject
Monday iTalki lesson review. A summary of points covered.
Tuesday Reading & pronunciation practice.
Wednesday Writing practice.
Thursday Textbook exercises.
Friday iTalki lesson review. A summary of points covered.
Sunday Korean related programming stuff.

So yes, a schedule with 6 out of 7 days in the week filled. Which in my terms is very ambitious and I’m unsure if I will be able to actually do this all the time. I will do my best however to make this habit stick because in the end, it’s all for myself and I need it!

With the blog being called “Programming In Korean” there clearly was no doubt that programming related content was going to be added at least at some point. Well, here it is. In the menu above I’ve added a programming section.

The very first content I put under it is related to Hangul and how it is specified in Unicode. For people not familiar with Unicode, I will explain it like how I told my mom about it. “It’s the way Hangul gets translated from and into the only two character a computer truly understands, ones and zeros.”

There are a lot of difficult problems when it comes to Hangul and encoding, especially when trying to analyze or recognize data and patterns. There is, in my opinion, quite a limited amount of (English) content on this topic.

For now though, it’s basic and simple. I will soon include code that demonstrates how to compose and decompose complete Hangul Syllables.

Have a look for yourself: Hangul in Unicode

So I try to listen to Korean podcasts quite a bit, even though mostly I will only grasp very the basics. Today I found another podcast that I really like. The ladies from J Rabbit (정혜선 & 정다운) apparently do a podcast too! The title is 달을 품은 토끼 which I would translate to “The moon embracing rabbit.”

Click here to check it out

So when I talked about “starting over” with Korean some time ago I mostly meant making sure that all my basic knowledge is accurate and complete. This lesson was already some time ago, (as in more than a month ago), but still deserves a place here.

은/는 for contrast or comparison

So one of the uses of 은/는 has complete gone over my head on all the occasions I have learned it in the past. Not only can it be used to designate the main topic, issue or discussion point. It can also be used to compare or contrast two things.

I made some sample sentences and had them corrected on lang-8, (thank you hyoseok & felixhwang), just to be sure:

1. I can understand C++. However, I don’t understand Objective-C well.
저는 C++를 이해할 수 있습니다. 하지만 오브젝티브-C는 잘 모릅니다.

2. I like apples but I don’t like pears.
저는 사과를 좋아합니다. 하지만 배는 좋아하지 않습니다.

3. Noona has read the book “The yellow house” but has not read the book “Casino”.
누나는 “노란집” 이란 책은 읽었습니다. 하지만 “카시노”는 읽지 않았습니다.

4. Today I don’t have to work. However, tomorrow I do have to work.
오늘은 일을 안해도 되었습니다. 하지만 내일은 일을 해야 합니다.


Another use, which I feel is related enough, was blogged about by koreanstudentblog and that is -은/는요.

He/She (Sorry M, it’s a little vague!) explained that it’s possible to add -은/는요 to a person’s name to avoid actually repeating a question asked to you first. I would imagine that this works with titles too. 형은요 / 누나는요? (It stood the test of Google!)

The most easy example I could come up with would be the obvious: “Have you been good? Yes, how about you Younha?”

윤하씨: 잘 지냈어요?
조르디: 네 잘 지냈어요. 윤하씨는요?

Isn’t that wonderful? ^^

While I understand that the purpose of a tag-post is that you are asked to do it by being “tagged”. I am still going to fill it in, pretty sure Hangukdrama won’t mind!

1. Why Korean?

The hardest and most predictable question of all. I got into StarCraft and Korea was the best at it. It got me into the music and culture. The language sounded so awesome and I was fascinated by the characters. After trying to pickup 한글 for fun (which only took me a few days) I kind of went on to study more.

2 . Daum or Naver (dictionary I mean)?


3. First website that you visit everyday?


4. Best thing that happened to you? (related to learning Korean)

The amount of respect I received for actually trying (and succeeding) in having conversations and asking questions during my stay in Korea.

5. Ever regretted learning Korean?

Not yet, I regret not working harder though.

6. Most common feedback/question you get when you say you are learning Korean?

“Why?”. Not sure if I can blame people for it, but it’s kind of annoying I guess.

7. First Korean food that comes to your mind?

비빔밥. It’s so easy to make, cheap everywhere but oh my… so good!

8. Most overrated Korean drama?

Dream High 2, that was just really bad and should not be watched. (Quit like 2 eps in.)

9. Most underrated Korean drama?

I’ll be fair, none come to mind. Probably because I have not watched enough of the more unknown stuff. I’d say a weekend drama but they are all so long that I never finish them.

10.Latest milestone in learning Korean?

Releasing a Korean Indie game on the Korean app stores.

11. Favorite Korean word / phrase?

똑똑하다. There is something about a sound like knocking on a door, (“Ttok Ttok”, don’t mind me while I cringe from using romanization), that means to be smart / intelligent. So funny!

12. Name 3 people (fictional / real) who motivate / influence your Korean learning journey

Hangukdrama, she’s been there and done that. It’s great to know that it’s possible with the right mindset and I hope to follow her towards fluency!

I’ll be slightly unfair, I want to name all the wonderful people that I met in Korea. I’m learning to communicate with them better too!

13. Secret ambition / goal (relating to Korean)

Being part of a Korean game development team!

14. I want to sound like _____ when I speak Korean

Kim Jong Kook, hahaha!

15. Best compliment received (for Korean)

(From restaurant owner without menu with pictures). 와… 영어 필요없습니다! (Wow, No English necessary!)

16. When is the last time you sat down and study Korean?


17. Favorite textbook?

Grammar in Use, to be fair I haven’t used many other textboos but it’s just really well structured.

18. Special people you met (online or otherwise) through Korean?

All the people I met in Korea and my iTalki Korean teachers.

19. How has learning Korean changed you / your life?

I don’t watch American shows anymore, and in the rare occasion that I do I have Korean subtitles.

Korean keyboards on all my devices.

My search engine is now Google Korea

I’ve started using the typical Korean sounds. For example when acknowledging what people say or the sounds of frustration.

20. Ever dreamt in Korean?


21. Single best thing about learning Korean?

Picking up something new in a song you know or a movie you’re watching again. Basically the realization that you’ve learned something new without immediately realizing it.