How can I have more details on a word / kana / kanji ?
From the "learning" mode, tap longly the answer to access the dictionary page.
From the favorites, simply tap one of your bookmarked items.
From the taxi game, click the answer.
Lookup a word or kanji in the dictionary and click on the results.
How can I enter text in Japanese on iPhone / iPad ?
In the "System Preferences" of your device, go in General -> International -> Add an international Japanese keyboard. With the "Romaji" dictionary, enter japanese the same way you would spell it with our alphabet (a-z), and the iPhone will replace syllabi by hiragana, kanji… The "Chinese traditional handwritten" keyboard will enable you to draw kanji as if you were drawing them with a pen on paper.
In any application you can click on the little globe in the keyboard's bottom left corner to switch from English to Japanese.
What does the taxi game consists in ?
It brings a little bit of "fun" into a dictionary / learning app ! This game consists in training yourself to read rapidly. Imagine that you are in a street of Tokyo and a bus with some ad passes by.
You can configure options by tapping the (i) if you want to see kana or kanji and if words have to be pulled from those you learnt or not.
Working on it !
Navigate in the dictionary
From the dictionary, one can tap most words and kanji to navigate directly to their page, exactly as one would do on the internet.
The << and >> buttons allow to resp. to come back to the previous page and see the next one.
The "contribute" button allow you to warn us of a translation error or to add a translation in your favorite language if you see it is missing. The app also has Japanese-French and Japanese-German dictionaries.
What are the input formats accepted by the dictionary ?
You can enter:
_ a kanji or a kana alone to access directly to the corresponding "character" page
_ you can look up words by prefix ("scho" instead of "school" for instance), in English as well as in Japanese.
_ The query in Japanese can be in kanji, hiragana, romaji, … (e.g: 医学 or いがく or "igaku").
Click on a search result to see the detailed page of a word or letter, from where you can add it to your favorites and navigate to other words.
What does the dictionary contain ?
The dictionary is divided in 2 parts, transparently to the user : words and letters (kana / kanji).
_ On a word's page, you will see : definition, grammatical type (noun, adjective, base 1 or 5 verb…), kanji breakdown, example sentences containing the word and the learning lists in which a word is part of.
_ On a letter's page : meaning, animated strokes order and scrape book to try to draw it, the kanji keys that it contains, related kanji, example of words that have the kanji and learning lists in which the letter is part of.
Learning / Flashcards
What is an SRS ? How does the system choose the questions ?
An SRS is a "Space Repetition System". The principle is simple : we show you words (in English or Japanese), you think to the translation then you look at the answer. You say if «Yes», «No» or «Maybe» you knew it.
The app will intelligently vary questions so as to test you many times on words that you don't know and less often on those that you don't know, so as not to forget them.
This way you will quickly know hundreds then thousands of words, since you won't waste your time seeing words / kanji that you already know well.
Why ask if "yes" or "no" we know a word, instead of asking us to write it ?
In the first versions of this app (on pc then on a website), the user was asked to write the answers and it turned out it was not the wiser solution :
_ check whether the answer is correct is difficult : think of "color" and "colour", "junior high school" and "high school". On the conjugation can vary.
_ its much much faster to tell whether we knew the answer than writing it. You can view a word / kanji and say yes or no every 2 seconds, when it would take 20 seconds at least to write an answer. In a 10 minutes session, that's the difference between 30 and 300 words. It is also really frustrating to write a word that you judge as easy.
Because kanji are a bit special, you might want to draw them even if you think you know. If you want to, click the textbox below the question and switch to the handwritten japanese keyboard (cf "How can I enter text in Japanese").
What lists of words/kanji/kana can I learn ?
_ Kana : contains all the hiragana and katakana.
_ Kanji : contains all the kanji of the JLPT (from level 4 to 1).
_ JLPT : contains all the words of the JLPT (from level 4 to 1).
_ Grammmar : all the words of Minna no Nihongo, one of the most studied books, in the same order as the lessons.
_ Audio : all the words from Assimil, in the same order as the lessons.
_ Yojijukugo : over 3000 expressions/proverbs/maxims made of 4 kanji, typically Japanese and litterate, from the most used ones to the less used ones.
_ Favorites : the words in your favorites.
The JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test) is the Japanese official examination. Level 4 is for beginners and level 1 is the hardest.
How to bookmark a word / kana / kanji in the Favorites ?
From the dictionary detailed view, click on "Add to Favorites".
The detailed view can be accessed :
_ From the "learning" mode, tap longly the answer to access the dictionary page.
_ From the favorites, simply tap one of your bookmarked items.
_ From the taxi game, click the answer.
_ Lookup a word or kanji in the dictionary and click on the results.
If an item is bookmarked, you will see "Remove from Favorites" where you could read before "Add to Favorites".
Is it possible to organize bookmarks in folders / subfolders / ... ?
Unfortunately, it is not. This seemed to be overcomplicated for most users. Favorites are there to help learn words / kanji, or to bookmark a word seen or heard over a day.
Adding one by one hundreds of them to create small lists would be tiring and would not be a good idea : it is easier to have everything you want to learn in a big list and rely on the algorithm to pick the best words for you instead of manually ticking on and off the lists you want to learn.
The most used lists are already in the app and if you think one is missing, don't hesitate to contact us !
Don't hesitate to send an email for any question, bug report, feature request, ... :