Tag Archives: kana
Introduction to the Japanese Writing System
Note: I originally intended this all to be one post, but it was becoming far, far too long. So, I’m splitting this up into a series. This is the first article in the “Japanese Writing System” series. To the untrained eye, Japanese writing looks like chaos. A friend of mine (who speaks fluent Japanese ^^) once told me her father refers to written Japanese as “chicken feet”, or the marks they’d make on a page if dipped in ink and turned loose. All of these symbols are mixed up all over the place in a seemingly random fashion (to the untrained eye, anyway). To top it off, there are no spaces between words! How is anyone ever supposed to learn that? I answer that question with another question: How did anyone learn English? It’s complex, too! Sure, there are only […]
Podcasts + Text = Podcastle
Part of immersion is listening to audio, such as podcasts. However, most Japanese podcasts do not come with written transcripts. This represents an issue when studying because it can be difficult to correctly understand what you hear. This is where Podcastle comes in. Podcastle is a project funded by the Japanese government for foreign Japanese language learners. It provides a speech recognition system to automagically convert the audio into text. While you play the audio, it tries to keep up but can sometimes become “desynchronized”. It helps if you know enough Japanese to be able to tell when it’s messed up, as it can sometimes be off by a few words. Knowing kana at a minimum may be enough to be able to tell this. While its speech recognition is not all that accurate (let’s face it, though – none […]
Updated Kana Table
おはようございます！ As some have probably already found, there is a kana table provided here on the site. However, the format just wasn’t as user-friendly as I would have liked, so I’ve changed some things. I revamped and split the table into two tables: one for Hirigana and the other for Katakana. These are printer friendly for convenience. The reason I created these was simple – most of the tables out there that I found sucked. Either they were an image (which means you can’t copy the characters) or they were poorly formatted and looked terrible or worse – they were hard to follow. These include the so-called “extended” characters, not just the regular 46 “pure sounds”. There’s a link to the table at the top and left of this site. Also, here.