Randomly Enjoying New Japanese with Weblio

I used to meet people who would tell me something I thought was odd at the time.

“Sometimes I like to just randomly read through the dictionary.”

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Whattt? A dictionary? For fun? I fully respect a dictionary for the powerful resource it is and would have been lost without it. But the thought of sitting down one night when I wanted to relax, lighting a candle, and getting close with a good dictionary never crossed my mind. However, many people do enjoy it. I’m fully aware of that now and am starting to appreciate it myself. It’s that thirst for knowledge and discovering the unknown.

With the old paper dictionaries, it was a lot easier to just randomly turn to pages and start reading. I figured there were ways to simulate this with digital dictionaries, but it wasn’t until the Weblio dictionary came along that I discovered something I found really interesting.

Weblio is the dictionary that appears first in the Google search results. It’s more than just a dictionary though, as it combines 668 standard/technical/specialty dictionaries and encyclopedias all together. There’s a lot of info, it’s filled with pictures and diagrams, and will bring a smile. That’s all fine and good. But one day I noticed an intriguing bright green button “Random Results” at the top right of the screen.

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Diving into the random

When I clicked on that button, I got a random entry from one of those 668 sources.

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A small tech company in Japan (Info Athletes) that I had never heard of. While this isn’t exactly exciting, the source made me realize that the tech news site ZDNET has a Japanese version. A nice little find. Can’t beat that.

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From that point on, I would occasionally just go on random binges, seeing what fascinating new info the site would bring me.

To reenact this experience and the fun I’ve had, I thought I would take you on a journey of clicking through Weblio Random.

Random #1

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Random #2

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Random #3

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Random #4

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Random #5

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Go Random

You may not have any interest in the above searches, but eventually you start to find things that you care about and further fuel your Japanese learning desire.

Try it out. You may have more fun than you imagine. Come back and let us know how it went!

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Founder of Jalup. Spends most of his time absorbing and spreading thrilling information about learning Japanese.


Randomly Enjoying New Japanese with Weblio — 6 Comments

  1. I think one of the many reasons why my English reached native-like is because I used to read the dictionary for fun. I’m doing this with Japanese right now (enjoying the j-j dictionary). Things can get confusing and overwhelming sometimes but I keep coming back to it since it’s fun.

    Weblio also has a thesaurus: http://thesaurus.weblio.jp which is also an amazing resource. Sometimes the j-j dictionary definitions are hard to grasp, I turn to the thesaurus. I didn’t know you could do that with weblio. Time to random lol.

    • Yeah, I regret not appreciating the fun a dictionary can provide sooner. Weblio is all powerful!

      Enjoy your random adventure

    • I still prefer Goo, though they probably draw from the same source material.

      However, for any kind of translation work (where you need a J-E dictionary), Weblio is my go to dictionary.

  2. The “random” feature on Weblio is game changing!!! After 7-8 clicks, I found the first random word I was interested in, and that was definitely a good way to both learn a new word and reviewing a bunch of other kanjis! It definitely fuels my Japanese learning desire, I really feel that.
    Thank you very much for this article!

    • It’s more fun than you expected, right?

      To some people at first it may sound unappealing, but after giving it a try you may be surprised.

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