Use your PC to Master Japanese and Chinese
The Dictionary Window
Examine the user dictionary window to see the
Initially, the user dictionary contains errata from the various
dictionaries, as well as examples of various types and modes of entries. You
can add entries which will be searched each time the word and phrase dictionary
- Press Alt+W then 2 to switch to the user dictionary window. Note the
titles on the Window menu for the permanent windows
Note the area at the end, which is
where the Translate | Add Selection to User Dictionary command places
new entries. You can move and arrange these entries as you like. The order is
not important, and you can have multiple entries with the same pronunciation.
- Scroll through the dictionary.
The Dynamic Glossary Window
the Keyboard | Add Selection to Dynamic Glossary command places new
entries at the end. You can move and arrange these entries as you like. We
recommend inverse frequency order (the most-used at the top). Although you can
have multiple entries with the same key, only the last entry is active, and the
other entries with the same key are ignored.
Deleting Chinese Characters
If you have entered the wrong characters by mistake, you can change or delete
the characters without retyping their pronunciation.
Depending on how much word and character spacing
you are using to display the document, hyouji is quite close to the end
of the line. If a portion of the expanded pronunciation exceeds the margins,
that portion will wrap to the next line, making it hard to work with.
- Open or switch to Gundam.jp0, and locate the word hyouji
meaning indication on the second or third line. Position the insertion
point to the right of the ji character. Note the kanji in the
hidden characters window, then press BackSpace to delete it. The ji
pronunciation reappears in the text as full-size hiragana.
- Press Left again to position the insertion point to the right of the
hyou character then press BackSpace to delete it. Note the hyou
pronunciation in the text, and that ji is not showing in the
hidden characters window.
- Position the insertion point to the left of the gloss and press Enter to
break the line, and move hyouji (and gloss) to the next line. The gloss
is now on the left margin where it takes no variable character space.
The pronunciation object hyouji was split into separate hiragana objects
in the word we deleted. Rejoin them so we can look them up as a word.
If you had double clicked with the mouse, or otherwise
selected the notes gloss before the pronunciation, you would be seeing a mess
as the pronunciations were joined to the English gloss! If that happened, press
Ctrl+Z to UnDo, and try again. Hint: first position the insertion point after
the gloss as indicated by the hidden characters window. You can use Alt+Left to
move the insertion point precisely.
- Select just the pronunciation (don't double click), then click the
right mouse button and select Join Objects to join the pronunciation
objects into one object. Note that the insertion point moves to the end of the
joined pronunciations, and that the hidden characters window shows the full
is also useful when converting text from one type to another. The selected text
becomes the type of the first selected object.
- Click the Right Mouse button and Query the pronunciation to look up
hyouji, then click the
entry in the list window to paste it into the document.
Ctrl Keys Split Existing Text Objects
Use Ctrl+ key input mode shortcuts carefully. Pressing a control key not only
changes the input mode, it also splits an existing text object at the insertion
into two objects, and changes the type of the text in the second object to
the input mode type. You earlier used this effect to change hiragana to
katakana. You can also convert between notes, English, and wide ENGLISH. If you
inadvertently split an object while typing, just press BackSpace or select
Edit | UnDo to restore the object. Otherwise, use Join Objects.
Extended Dictionary Searches
When typing or moving the insertion point, Smart Characters makes a simple
guess of a possible dictionary lookup key based upon the current object type:
the text in the object to the left of the insertion point becomes the
dictionary lookup key. By selecting text, you can create more sophisticated
When text is selected, the
Translate menu changes to indicate that extended lookups are active.
- Go back to hyouji, and double click the word to highlight it. Note
that the word and its gloss are selected.
When both kanji and kana are selected, Query ignores the
pronunciation of the kanji, and looks for the combination of kanji plus in-line
kana. Besides notes and kanji, Query also ignores syllable separators,
works over line breaks, and is otherwise quite versatile. This comes in handy
when hand annotating text imported from other word processors.
- Select Translate and note that Lookup Syllable has changed
to Lookup Pronunciations. Select it to display a list of words beginning
with hyouji. Select hyoujin meaning a go between and
substitute it into the text for hyouji.
- Double click hyoujin, and select Translate | Lookup
Characters (ordinarily Lookup Similar Syll.) to look up kanji
compounds that contain the selected kanji (but not necessarily in the same
order). Select the longer form to paste in a more elaborate expression.
- Clean up by moving to the end of the previous line, and deleting the line
break you added in the step above, then pressing Up or Down to reformat the
- Locate and select the phrase toki ni
Do not select the following punctuation. Press the Right Mouse button and
select Query to display a list of mixed kanji and kana that match the
When pronunciations or notes are displayed Above or Below the
text, the main insertion point does not move, and new text will interfere with
other pronunciations or glosses on the line. Redraw the line as necessary for a
clear display. Practice changing the toki ni
gloss time to when.
The Same mode is perfect for editing,
where you do not want to have to constantly fiddle with setting a different
input mode when editing Japanese, English, pronunciations, and glosses.
- Press Side Asterisk (*) or Alt+F12 to switch to
input mode, in which the input mode changes to match the current object. Note
the asterisk Same indicator on the status line between the object type
and input mode indicators.
with the unwanted gloss, the word and phrase dictionary always inserts a ^D
word separator to begin a new word. Words in Smart Characters consist of
a notes object followed by any combination of pronunciation and characters
- Use the arrow keys to position the insertion point on various objects, and
notice how the input mode tracks. Note, for example, that the input mode after
a kanji is just Hiragana, not Chars.
- Move just to the left of the toki character and position the
insertion point on the gloss. Press BackSpace repeatedly to delete time.
Note that the screen still displays time, but that the display in the
hidden characters window is correct. Stop deleting when the gloss is empty,
otherwise you will delete the word separator, and quit notes mode.
placement (set by Format | Annotations) is Above or Below,
you can access only the end of a notes object using BackSpace (which also
- Sill in notes input mode, type when, and note the overlapped screen
display, and the correct hidden characters display. Press F10 to redraw the
line. Press Alt+F12 to quit The Same input mode.
Deleting a Gloss
If you are deleting an entire gloss, you can do it in one step. Delete the
gloss Shaw from the next word.
- Press Ctrl+Right to move to the left of the Shaw katakana.
Ctrl+Left and Right moves by words by jumping to the next word separator. Note
that the current character indicator displays ^D, the word separator.
- Press Delete to delete the next visible object (the gloss Shaw).
Note that the word space has been deleted, but that the gloss is still visible.
Press F10 to redraw the line.
Deleting and BackSpace
BackSpace and Delete work completely differently. BackSpace deletes a character
from the object to the left of the insertion point. The character may be part
of the in-line text, or it may be part of an annotation.
Delete deletes the in-line object to the right of the insertion point and other
objects between the insertion point and the next character. An object is
in-line if it occupies space on the line. Typically, the Delete key deletes
several objects at a time: one in-line character plus associated
pronunciations, and sometimes notes glosses. In addition, the LeftShift+Delete
combination deletes the single byte current character, and the
RightShift+Delete combination deletes a single hidden object beginning with the
Review Notes Behavior
Notes glosses when displayed above or below the line can also occupy
variable word spacing(4-
on the line. As long as variable word spacing is not zero, you can delete a
gloss by pressing the Delete key. However, when annotations are off, variable
word spacing is automatically set to zero, and glosses can be deleted by only
by deleting the following character, or by selecting the gloss using the
Shift+Alt+Right key, then pressing Delete. Although the insertion point does
not move on the display, the hidden characters window displays the object being
Glosses in the first word on the line and pronunciation objects do not occupy
space (word spacing is zero on the left margin, so that the margin lines up).
Delete them using the Shift+Alt method above.
Pasting and Deleting
Copy and paste the Chinese sentence into the existing Gundam.jp0 lesson
document. The basic steps are: select the text, select the copy or cut command,
position the insertion point, then select the paste command.
You can also make a keyboard selection without using the Shift key at
- Practice click and drag selection by first clicking on the beginning of
the selection, then holding the left mouse button down while moving the mouse
until the desired text is highlighted (selected).
- Practice selecting text using the keyboard by positioning the insertion
point, then pressing and holding the Shift key, then using the Arrow keys to
make the selection. Smart Characters forgives releasing the Shift key. To
extend the selection, just press and hold Shift again, and use the Arrow
- Position the insertion point, then press F8 or select Keyboard | Extend
Selection. Use the arrow keys to define the selection in a leisurely
fashion: there is nothing that has to be held on to.
Copy and Paste
- Select the entire sentence, then select Edit | Copy or press Ctrl+C
to copy the text to both the internal and the Windows clipboard.
- Open or switch to Gundam.jp0, position the insertion point on the
blank line under the title.
- Select Edit | Paste or press Ctrl+V to copy the text from the
internal (but not the Windows) clipboard. Note how the pronunciation and
glosses switched positions. Annotation formatting is a global
property of the document as a whole, and does not change with the text.
Typing Replaces a Selection
The lesson document is ruined! To fix it, delete it all at once:
- Select the text, then press the `g' key (or any letter key). The selection
is replaced by the key you just pressed. This is traditional Windows and
OOPS! Didn't mean it! You spent hours constructing that sentence, don't let it
be annihilated by a stray `g' key.
- Select Edit | Undo (press Ctrl+Z, or click the toolbar button)
twice to delete the `g' and to restore the text. The first time deletes
the `g.' The second restores the selection.
Drag and Drop
Move the sentence fragment at the beginning of the first paragraph to the end
of the paragraph, in blatant disregard of the author's intentions. Although you
could use standard cut and paste, we will experiment with drag and drop
editing. For this, you must use the mouse:
Observe that the text has been cut from the beginning and pasted
into the end of the paragraph. Also note that the paragraph does not reform
itself automatically to the margins. To reform the paragraph:
- Use the mouse to select the sentence fragment ...iru tame ni at the
left of the first sentence. Include the period at the end. You can select this
easily by double clicking. Note that the insertion point hides during a
- Click and hold the Left Mouse button inside the selection. The insertion
point re-appears and tries to follow the mouse cursor. At the same time, the
mouse cursor itself has acquired some rectangles (the text), which you are now
- Keep holding that Left Mouse button while moving the cursor until the
insertion point is at the end of the paragraph. Let go of the mouse
The drag and drop
editing function uses the internal clipboard for cutting and pasting, which
means you can paste the item you just moved.
- Use the Arrow keys (the mouse won't do) to move the insertion point above
or below the current line to reform the paragraph, or use the Right Mouse
button speed menu to select Reform Paragraph.
continue to paste until you run out of room in the current window.
- Position the insertion point then press Ctrl+V repeatedly to paste the
sentence fragment. Note that the line scrolls each time you paste the block.
Move the insertion point up or down to reform the paragraph.
Pasting from the Windows Clipboard
There are two ways to paste text and objects between applications. The first
simply uses the Windows clipboard to transmit text or graphics. The second uses
a special feature of Windows, Object Linking and Embedding. Experiment
with simple copying and pasting.
Launching a Task
First, launch Windows Write:
- Select the main frame system menu (the rectangle to the left of the
main frame title bar) to drop the top level window system menu. Select
Switch To and note the accelerator key Ctrl+Esc. From the Task
List dialog, select Program Manager to switch to it.
- Use the Program Manager Window menu to switch to the
Accessories group. Locate the Write program icon (if you have deleted
it, you use (File | New | Browse to re-install the icon to
c:\windows\write.exe). Launch Write.
Copying Text from Write
One of the oxymorons of Windows is that all applications work alike, so that if
you learn to use one, you can use them all:
The package works
to launch Smart Characters 2.9 installed on drive c: only. You can use the
Object Packager to change the drive. The linked object can be changed by
selecting Write's Edit | Links | Change.
- Use the Write File | Open menu to open c:\sc\sc.wri,
a simple read-me file that discusses object embedding and linking. Observe the
three embedded objects: a package to launch Smart Characters for Students
Version 2.9, an embedded object, and a linked object.
- Use the mouse to select the plain text paragraph under the title
Embedding, then press Ctrl+C or select Edit | Copy to copy it to
the Windows clipboard.
Switching between Tasks
You can switch tasks by clicking on a task's window, however, sometimes you
cannot see the window, or the mouse is too much trouble, and Alt+Esc doesn't
work (out of memory). Instead:
- Press and hold Alt then press Tab repeatedly until you see the Smart
Characters logo. Release Alt to switch to Smart Characters. This method always
works to switch tasks, even when you run out of memory for the Task List
dialog to display. Activate the Gundam.jp0 document window (click it
with the mouse, or use the Window menu).
Pasting Text with Paste Special
Because Paste pastes text from the Smart Characters internal clipboard,
we have to use the Paste Special command:
- Position the insertion point on a blank line (make one if necessary) and
switch to English input mode. Almost all text from windows uses English.
- Select Edit | Paste Special (not Paste) to open the Paste
Special dialog. Select Text for the Data Type, then select
Paste (not Paste Link).
Apply Paragraph Formatting
Paste Special | Text | Paste pastes "text" as plain text, without
formatting or word wrap. Make the pasted text into a paragraph:
- Select the entire paragraph using the mouse. Select Format | Format
into Paragraph to apply paragraph formatting, removing the hard line
breaks, and inserting soft line breaks to wrap the paragraph to the margins and
Page Size, Margins, and Indenting
The way the document looks on the page is controlled by the Page Size and
Margins and Paragraph formatting controls.
- Select Zoom | Fit Page to view the entire page as it will be
printed. Make the document and main frame windows large enough so you can see
the page as clearly as your system will allow.
Default and Local Formatting
Some kinds of formatting can be changed on a paragraph or character by
As you switch between these groups, note the changes to the
values in the dialog box. For example, the default
for English and Chinese characters is 12 points, while it is half that, 6
points, for notes and pronunciations. Note that Apply Format can be set
to Default (from the beginning of the document), From Cursor
(onward from the insertion point through the text), or to a Block
(around selected text).
- Select Format | Character to display the Character Format
dialog, and the controls that apply character formatting. This dialog is really
three dialogs in one, controlled by the Font Group selection. Use the
Arrow keys or click the radio button to set Font Group to each of the
font groups: English, Notes (and pronunciations), and Chinese
- Select Format | Paragraph to display the Paragraph Format
dialog, and the controls that apply paragraph formatting. Note the same choices
for Apply Format. Repeat for Format | Tabs to display the Set
Tab Stops dialog.
Page Setup and Annotations formatting apply to the document as a
whole, and remain constant throughout the document. You are already familiar
with Format Annotations, so try Page Setup:
You may not have seen a Writing Direction control before.
It is now set to LR-TB, which means left to right, then top to bottom.
Experiment with vertical writing by selecting a vertical form:
- Select Format | Page Setup to display the Page Setup dialog,
where you select or define new forms (page size, margins, footnote
settings, and writing direction) which, together with templates
(used by File | New), help to maintain consistency from document to
You can create your own forms by simply entering a new form name.
The new form takes its initial properties from the previously current form.
- Select Form | Vertical 8.5x11 to switch to vertical writing
on a standard US page. Note that the insertion point and mouse cursor switch to
horizontal shapes. Also note the behavior of the arrow keys.
- Select Form | Standard 8.5x11 to switch back to "normal"
Formatting with the Ruler
Sometimes it is more convenient to use other controls to format a document, so
that you can see the effects of your changes instantly.
Tabs are a type of paragraph formatting that can be
applied to one of three levels. However, the ruler applies paragraph tab and
indent formatting only around a selection (highlighted text) if one exists, or
from the insertion point forward if there is no selection. Global tab stops and
indenting are applied using the Format menu. Apply a larger indent to
the recently pasted English paragraph:
- Select View | Ruler to display the ruler above the document. Note
the triangular symbols for left and right indent, and the symbol for first line
indent (the top half of the left triangle). The upside-down "T" figures are the
default tab stops.
- Select the English paragraph. Avoid selecting any portion of the next line
- Grab the Left Indent control (lower small triangle) with the mouse,
and move it from the 1 inch mark to the 2 inch mark. Grab the Right
Indent control (large triangle) and move it from the 7.5 inch mark to the
6.5 inch mark. The paragraph becomes doubly indented. Note that the first line
indent has retained its relative position.
Create a Hanging Indent
- Grab the Left First Line Indent control (upper small triangle) with
the mouse, and move it from the 2.5 inch mark to the 1.5 inch mark.
Add A Bullet
Hanging indents don't look so great by themselves, so add a bullet:
Hanging indents cause tricky insertion point behavior.
Initially, the paragraph starts out indented the same as the previous
paragraph. Next, the indent formatting we just added moves the text to the
left. Finally, text displays to the right, overlapping the original starting
point, so that two parts of the text display in the same position. The mouse
does not attempt to decide when clicked in the area. The Arrow keys will move
through the text, and jump over the format codes. The Home key alternates
between the beginning of the line before and after the indent format codes.
- Press an arrow key to cancel the selection, then position the insertion
point at the beginning of the hanging indent. If pressing an arrow key does not
cancel a selection, press the F8 key (Extend Selection) to toggle
BLOCK F8 selection mode.
- Press F12 or Side + - to access Punct input mode. The insertion
point displays the punctuation symbol (
- Press the e key to enter a diamond symbol (
then press Tab to position the text even with the indent. Press Up or Down to
move the insertion point off the line, and to reformat the
Because Smart Characters formats documents by adding
to the text, you can view, edit, and define your own codes for special
- Position the insertion point on the first line of the hanging indent, then
repeatedly press the Home key to move the insertion point back and forth. The
hidden characters window alternates between English and Format, while the
status line shows the line position indicator alternating between 0 and
approximately 20, the width of the format codes.
- View the format codes by selecting View | Codes. Take a look while
repeating the last step of moving with the arrow keys. Observe also the hidden
characters window, and try Alt+Arrow keys for finer movement. Press Ctrl+F1 to
toggle the codes window on and off. Leave the window off.
Adding Character Formatting
Try adding some character formatting, like bold, italic, and a new typeface.
exceeds the line height. It is acceptable to interfere with the previous line.
our example phrase iru tame ni and click the bold button on the
toolbar to make it bold. Select some other text and click the italics
button. Click the cursor inside the formatted areas and note that the bold or
italics buttons are depressed.
- Select iru tame ni and select Format Char from the Right
Mouse speed menu. Set the font group to Chinese Characters, then set the
Point Size to 16.
- Select the phrase Embedding an object ..., select Format
Char from the Right Mouse speed menu, set the font group to English,
then set the Point Size to 24. Did you inadvertently get the star as
well? Text selection is tricky in the vicinity of a hanging indent.
- Select Format Char again and examine the selection under typeface.
The only typefaces registered in the example document are Times New
Roman and CombinedMing. Register Arial (a Helvetica
look-alike) by selecting Add Typeface from the Windows Typeface
dialog, then select it. Note how Arial is wider than Times. Set the Point
Size down a tad to 20 points.
"Ugly, ugly, ugly! Shame on you! Eighteen typefaces in the first paragraph
alone! Don't you know anything about graphics design?" screams the
- Remove the paragraph formatting by selecting the English paragraph, then
selecting Format | Remove Codes | Paragraph. The paragraph resumes its
- Remove the character formatting by selecting the Japanese text you
formatted (selecting more doesn't hurt), then selecting Format | Remove
Codes | Character. The text resumes its former appearance.
- As a consolation prize, keep the formatting on the title.
- Really clean up by selecting the English paragraph, then click the
Eraser button on the toolbar (or pressing Delete). OOPS, second
thoughts! Click the Undo button and get it back, just to make sure that
you could if you wanted, but you don't, so reselect the paragraph and delete it
Sometimes it is useful to be able to annotate a document and then extract the
glosses. With Chinese text, the result is almost readable, but with Japanese,
the word order is so different, it is nearly impossible to read. Nonetheless,
give it a try.
- Select a quantity of text, then select Learn | Extract Glosses. The
glosses are copied to the internal (but not the windows) clipboard.
Create a New Document
- Select File | New to create a new document window. Base the
document on Normal.sct, the default template. Select Edit | Paste
or press Ctrl+V to paste the glosses into the document. Note how the paragraphs
Pasting Smart Characters Text
- Select the text in the new window and use the Edit | Copy command
or press Ctrl+C to copy the glosses into the Windows clipboard. Double click
the child system menu to close the new window (don't save the file).
- Press Alt+Tab to switch to Write (if not still running, launch it
again from the Program Manager) and position the insert point at the end
of the Sc.wri document. Select Paste | Special, then
Text, and finally Paste to paste the glosses. Read them
without reference to the Japanese to get a certain feeling for the story. This
is like the feeling someone who knows no Japanese at all would get from reading
the annotations alone.
Break Time with Instant Vocabulary
Any time you see a Chinese character that arouses your curiosity, take some
time to explore it using Query, and Instant Vocabulary:
- Press Alt+Tab to switch to back to Smart Characters.
- Locate the horse character
and place the insertion to the right of it so that it shows in the hidden
characters window. Press F2 or select Query from the Right Mouse button
- Activate and adjust the list window for a reasonable display. You can zoom
and size the window as you like. If you prefer to view in black and white,
select View | Display | Black & White. Scroll through the list.
- With the list window active, select Learn | Vocabulary. Note the
Nothing Retrieved or Selected dialog. Select Convert file to
vocabulary lesson, then OK to convert the contents of the list
window into a new vocabulary lesson view window. Select OK to close the
Conversion Complete notification dialog.
Resize the Window
Launch some other
application and do something completely different (i.e., get back to work).
Every few minutes, do another few rounds with the vocabulary lesson.
- Go through a few cycles using the window as it is leaving the menus at
File Drill Setup. Click and drag the Vocabulary Lesson View title
bar to move the window to the upper right hand corner of your screen. Drag the
left bottom edge to size it so that the title bar just displays. Because the
flashcard gets crowded out at small sizes, select Setup and set both
Show History and Show Status to unchecked, hiding the windows.
Resize the vocabulary window again, or resize the flashcard window to fit.
- Go through a few more cycles, noticing how the menus have become
abbreviated to accommodate the smaller size. Adjust the window size to
accommodate the largest vocabulary entry. Resize the main Smart Characters main
frame window and move it underneath the vocabulary lesson view. Kill the hidden
characters window, which demands to be always on top.
- Select Setup | Tutor to invoke the Vocabulary Tutor
Preferences dialog. Experiment with the FlashCard Zoom controls to
change the size of the characters used in the drill.
Saving Instant Lessons As...
- When you are done, you can close the vocabulary lesson, and quit Smart
Characters. Use File | Save As to save any instant lessons, otherwise
they will be discarded.
Turn Hidden Characters On
If you are not quitting, have turned off the hidden characters window, and want
to enter text, select View | Hidden Characters to reinstate the window.
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Last Modified: March 23, 1996
Copyright © 1996 Apropos, Inc.