Kanji handwriting recognition on the cheap
April 22, 2008 11:39 AM   Subscribe

I have a Wacom graphics tablet. Is there a (preferably free or at least cheap) kanji handwriting recognition program for WinXP that would let me write kanji by hand without knowing the correct stroke order, and produce a translation and/or Unicode characters that I can cut and paste?

(I know there are PDAs that do this, but I'd prefer not to have to buy one just for kanji recognition).
posted by martinrebas to Writing & Language (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I remember DimSum from mandarintools.com has a decent handwriting recognizer on it, but the translations will be for the Chinese meaning(which is often slightly different from the Japanese meaning). You might be able to plug a Japanese dictionary into it, however - I haven't used it for a while so I don't really remember, unfortunately.

Also, I think WinXP's included Japanese IME has a kanji handwriting recognition feature.
posted by pravit at 11:53 AM on April 22, 2008

posted by PowerCat at 11:59 AM on April 22, 2008

If you install Japanese text input under Regional and Language settings in WinXP's control panel, there should be an icon in the language bar called "IME Pad." The IME pad let's you write out a character and it tries to recognize it, gives you best/only options out of the input dictionary.

Instructions and screenshots for setup/use here.
posted by s01110011 at 12:10 PM on April 22, 2008

Piggybacking: Does anyone have a Mac solution? The link posted by PowerCat isn't working for me at the moment...
posted by avocet at 1:20 PM on April 22, 2008

I don't know of any kanji based HWR that's not based on stroke order. Learning the correct stroke order is fairly important, I'd try to learn it before you start memorizing characters.
posted by mphuie at 2:04 PM on April 22, 2008

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