I noticed a few new members joining recently inspite the lack of activity in the group so I thought I'd say a few words about why things are the way they are and how we can get this group moving.
Honestly, this group is rather inactive. We come from all over the world and from all walks of life so I guess finding time when we can all get together and practice is not a viable approach. Therefore, I decided to give my skype info to everyone in order to encourage you to contact me whenever any of you have spare time so we can practice. This would have worked great since not everyone is having trouble with same things etc. But, only two people ever added me on skype and we never really got to talk. The sad fact is, as a student of electrical engineering, I spend most of my days in the lab or in classes and don't get online during the weekdays that much. But! I still want you guys to talk to me on skype. I want us all to get together and talk about Japanese whenever we can. Also, If you need resources, ask in this group. If you need books, anything, just ask.
Now, a bit about language learning. Language is not something you study. It's a skill, like riding a bike. If you want to learn how to ride a bike, you just try. Sure, you'll fall a few times, everyone does. But you can't learn to ride it just by standing next to it and reading the manual(textbooks). Even if you remember the gear ratios for all possible combinations and the time it takes for you to decelerate from 30km/h, once you're on the bike, it will be nothing but useless disturbance until you get the feel of how it's done. Language works the same way. It's not that you lose the ability to acquire a second language as you grow up, it's just that your methods shift from actually trying to studying about the wondrous phenomenon of communication using a different set of symbols. That's just wrong.
Finally, everyone's task for the next week. Identify one step you think you need to take in getting started(or continuing if you're already at it) with Japanese and try to take that step. whether it's learning hiragana, katakana, practicing pronounciation, learning how to tell time in Japanese or reading Genji monogatari in it's original form(that's my ultimate goal by the way) anything you want to know. Post your progress here, ask questions, look for resources, do whatever it takes to learn what you wanted to learn. Now let's get to it.