Archive for August, 2006

August update

August 31, 2006

With 21 hours to spare I can call this the August update. These are the things I’ve been working on during the summer.

This nifty thing, available on the front page, allows you to do a Japanese word search for the text you currently have selected in your browser. Just drag the bookmarklet to the favourites/bookmarks bar and when you click it a lite-version of the word search page will pop up in a new window with the word you had selected. You can leave this window open and it will be used for consecutive searches with the bookmarklet.

When you do a search for an inflected verb or i-adjective, like 走って and 楽しくて the server will now deinflect this for you and give you a link to search for the plain form instead. This works great together with the bookmarklet for looking up words in a running text. This feature uses the excellent MeCab morphological analyzer.

Example sentences
These have gotten a lot of love this time after some helpful comments from the maintainer of the database file, Paul Blay.

  • First of all more words in the Japanese sentences are now linked to word searches.
  • You can now send in corrections when you spot an error. Just use the “Report inaccuracies in *sentence*” link. The corrections will be sent to me and the example database’s maintainer.
  • The example sentences are now, just like the words, auto updated once a week (on sunday mornings central European time).

The word search got an extra bit of juice with this upgrade and should now be a tad faster than before. I have also set the default limit of result hits for all word, kanji and sentence searches to be 25 instead of 50. This should also help to increase speed.

The usual
There are also the customary bunch of bugfixes and smaller speed improvements. The look also got an update for better clarity.

Coming updates
There are two more features I have in the pipline, romaji output and better pagination, and I hope to get them done in September. However, I have been fortunate enough to recieve a Monbukagakusho Japanese studies scholarship, which means that I will be studying Japanese at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies for a year beginning in October. I don’t know yet how big the workload will be, but I suggest that if you want a feature or bugfix, you send in your suggestion before then. The trip will be blogged on my personal blog, which also might see the odd post about Japanese.

Lastly, a big thanks to Peter for donating!