Well its finally released. Here is the new version of Perapera-kun for Firefox. Took a bit longer than I was hoping but I am now happy with what is released. I submitted it to Firefox but they always take forever to actually update it on their site so it is available here first for anyone who wants to try it out. You can find it in the download box in the left or find the direct links to the file at the end of this post. Here are the new features:
- Wordlist Sidebar: Press ‘S’ while displaying an entry to save it to the wordlist. (Also is a “Grab Entries!” button, but more about that in a later post. Stay tuned.) You can add, delete, and export these entries to a file whenever you want.
- Japanese and Chinese united: Now both Japanese and Chinese are handled in 1 plug-in by adding the dictionaries you want.
- Korean support coming very soon! Currenty it will display the romanized pronunciation but I dont have a dictionary to use yet. Can anyone help?
- StatusBar Icon: Now everything is easily controlled via the Perapera-kun status bar icon. Enable multiple languages with one click, options dialog, and more.
- New Chinese-English Dictionary: I now use the open public CCEDICT to feed the entries for Chinese-English. This should fix alot of the inconsistencies the previous dictionary had.
- Chinese-German Dictionary: Uses the HanDeDict open public dictionary for Chinese-German. Please only install 1 Chinese dictionary at a time.
- Supports Japanese to English, French, German, and Russian dictionaries along with the Japanese Names dictionary compiled by polarcloud.com
- Redeigned options dialog that is cleaner and easier to use.
- New icon for the add-on
After you download the add-on you will need to install the dictionary add-on for the language you want to use. For Japanese, visit polarcloud.com to install one of those dictionaries and for Chinese, download the English or German dictionary in my download box or in the links below. Thanks for using and I look forward to your feedback.
**LINKS UPDATED: The following links will now download from Mozilla.
Japanese Dictionaries at Polarcloud.com
I got a whole bunch of emails asking for traditional character support, which I fully intended to release soon but didnt have time to code when I was rushing to get something out for the FF3 release. I had some time in a trip ride back from a business trip so I coded it up for you all. I guess alot more people use traditional characters than I thought. So traditional characters are back up and working now.
Also for you really ambitious people who want to learn/display both character sets, in the options dialog under the general tab, you can tick “Show Traditional + Simplified Characters for each entry.” and it will display both versions no matter which characters the word you are looking up is in. I also cleaned up the prefs dialog a bit. You can find the update in the blue box here to the left. Enjoy!
UPDATE: Some people are having problems finding the blue download box (no flash installed??) so here are the links to the files:
Download them to some location then drag and drop them to FF3 to install
Not enough to push out an update, but for those you really want to use this with the Firefox 3 Betas, you can download compatible versions in my “Box” on the left here. Uninstall the old versions first. Enjoy!
PS: Thank you to those who have already donated! I’ll be working hard this weekend on getting a new version of this out soon!
Is Chinese or Japanese Perapera-kun worth a cup of coffee?
My philosophy toward free software is that if I met the person who coded some program that really helped me out or I used alot, sure I would offer to buy him a coffee or a beer for his troubles.
So if this has helped you at to some degree in your studies or your profession (I know more than a few people who use this almost full time in their jobs) I encourage you to donate the cost of a cup of coffee by clicking on the donation link on the left of the screen.
Besides making my efforts feel appreciated, this will greatly motivate me to get the updates I want to do faster and write some other plug-ins and language related software I have been thinking of creating. Thank you.
I’m excited to finally be working on a new version and here is a list of major changes I will be implementing:
- Can save vocabulary words to a sidebar for easy viewing & reviewing
- Choose example sentences to be saved with your word
- Saved words can be highlighted when you view other websites
- Redesigned settings dialog thats easier to use
- Easier way to save words, no more CTRL key confict!
- Possible integration with a Chinese/Japanese study site
- Better looking pop-up box
- A sounds option to pronounce those tones on the words
Wow embarrassing how old that last post was but alot has happened in the past year including moving back to America and a career change. My new career and job has sucked up all the my time but now I have settled in and can work on my side projects again.
Anyways, here’s the new. I will release a minor update of the plug-in so that it works with Firefox 3 this weekend. The next update will be huge and I will be devoting time to it regularly now so the update will come in a reasonable time frame.
I thank all the people who have downloaded, reviewed, commented and sent me feedback. I have had some good dialogs with many of you, and have a really good feel for what will be changed in the next version.
I have been recently working on updating the dictionary and search for better results. I have to to a place now where there are good results and am about done and ready to release. This will the be the last update for a long time so if there is anything anyone wants changed/included please leave a comment. Main changes are:
- Rewrote search code so it should be about twice as fast now.
- Updated the dictionary file, so now theres more entries (hence the faster search was needed).
- Traditional characters are now supported in browsing and exporting, just choose traditional hanzi in the options menu.(simplified is the default)
- Added the option to see more results displayed, by choosing “Show More Results” in the options dialog. (off by default)
- Stripped out the japanese kanji related info.
- In place of that japanese related info window, if you press it will magnify the hanzi.
Some people have complained about the japanese kanji window being removed, I dont know why, most the information was irrelevant, but if its something everyone wants back I will put it back..leave a comment.
OR if you want the same thing with chinese character information there is the UNIHAN dictionary which holds that information but is 30MB in size…so it would make the extension huge. It contains alot of information that has to do with Japanese and Korean so if someone wants to make a processed version of that file with only the chinese info cherry picked, and sent it to me I can implement that. Or I could try to make it as an optional add-on (much like the names dictionary for the japanese version). Up to you…I dont personally need so I dont plan to add it.
Any other feature requests ?? Leave a comment.
Found some great resources today.
I found a blog awhile back called MutantFrog Travelogue which offers up interesting viewpoints on Japan related news/politics. In a recent post about which reports on Japan he respects he trivially tossed a link in his post to http://www.gregoryclark.net/ who is a used to be famous/is still famous australian who has lived in Japan and written many an article for Japan Times and other publications in Japan (in Japanese and English) and has these posted on his website. The articles are all in 2-column form with English on the left, and Japanese on the right–a great resource for learning political or recent news vocabulary!
This also applies to Japanese, but a resource I found a loooong time ago (before I was studying Chinese) then remembered is MIT’s OpenCourseWare program. Everything is released under the CreativeCommons copyright and therefore is 100% free. You can download the whole course or go thru all the homework assignments, tests, handouts, and in the case of Chinese (and others I suppose), even textbooks are online for free. They also have culture and history courses available for the interested. Amazing resource and quite handy since I’m still at the starting out stage in Chinese. Highly Recommended.