Saturday, February 24, 2007

Kanji Sonomama Rakubiki Jiten Review

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Ohayo! Getting an electronic standalone English to Japanese/Japanese to English language dictionary can be quite an expensive affair. But if you have a Nintendo DS, you can get Kanji Sonomama Rakubiki Jiten, an electronic dictionary software that runs on your DS and comes in the same cartridge as any other Nintendo DS game.

Kanji Sonomama Rakubiki Jiten (a.k.a Easy Kanji Dictionary) is part of Nintendo Japan's Touch Generation series. Utilizing three dictionaries, you can search for the definition of English words in Japanese (some of the English words have audio pronunciations) as well as definition of Japanese words in English.

Words can be entered by writting them on the touchscreen or by using the virtual keyboards (one for Japanese characters and another for English letters). As its title indicates, kanji is used for Japanese character entry and it is prerogrative that users know the strokes to the characters, as the software makes use of this for character recognition.

I received my copy of the software through the mail a couple of days ago, and becaue the interface is entirely in Japanese, I'm still learning the ropes on using this software. Obscure menus aside (not in terms of functionality I hope, but in terms of they are in Japanese and I don't know what they do), I'm pretty much comfortable entering English words and some kanji.

This should be a useful tool when I start attending Japanese classes next month.

On to even lighter things, this piece of software from Nintendo has it's fair share of Easter Eggs. Write Mario and you'll hear the familiar coin sound when you select the particular entry, the same goes for entries such as Game Boy, Game Boy Advance and Game&Watch!

For even cooler treats, select combine mode (instead of individual dictionaries) and write either Manhole or Judge and you get to play the old Game&Watch titles of the same names! Hopefully I won't be doing the same during class :)

If you are interested in getting Easy Kanji Dictionary for the Nintendo DS, you can get it at Play-Asia (here)