日本

you're strange and you're beautiful

It only takes one to Tangorin.

One of my worst blog titles. I promise, the post is much better!

Over on the philosophical/bioluminescent/日本語 wonder that is Gakuranman’s site, he recently held a competition for short entries on Japanese student learning methods. Considering how confusingly I worded that concept, I barely have enough mastery of the English language and therefore did not contribute anything personally. There are some excellent entries (click on the winner’s names to see their comments) and I look forward to his completed article on study methods.

おいしいいいい!

Being a beginner myself, I’ve got nothing in particular to offer. However, I did want to give props to one of the most clicked bookmarks on my browser toolbar: Tangorin. The site is the lovechild of Grzegorz Bober and the JMdict/EDICT collective, and the fruit of this vocabular orgy is – in my opinion – the best combination dictionary and grammar tool. (speaking of tools – see picture at right)

There’s a screencap of my browser – this tab is rarely ever closed.

Not so hot on interpreting your kanji, or finding word separation? Enter your problem text into the search box and choose ‘Examples’ from the drop down list. Only when my copy and paste skills have failed me has this not turned up some relevant choices. Clicking on words within an example handily expands the definition as an inset, rather than jumping away from the page, and can be closed just as easily.

Creating a free account allows you to personalise the site to your tastes and create vocabulary lists to print or, as I use them, to act as reminders that I really, really should recognise 彼女 by now. I highly recommend ticking the box ‘Display readings in kana’, as Romaji is Evil.

My favourite past-time is watching a Japanese film in one tab of my browser, and keeping Tangorin open next to it. I probably accumulate at least 25 new vocab in one film sitting. Not only does the tab jumping not interfere with the film’s flow that much, it also doesn’t feel like studying. I am learning words as they occur naturally in the Japanese screenplays, and in particular words that mean something specific to me.
You know, words like:

Of course, I was completely won over when a common phrase turned up an example quoting The Beatles:
Guaranteed to remember that one! On a side note, I cannot wait to see Anh Hung Tran’s film version of Norwegian Wood.

1 Comment»

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by BlogLinkJapan, David LaSpina and Katie Muffett, Katie Muffett. Katie Muffett said: It only takes one to Tangorin.: http://wp.me/pvt4a-jA […]


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