Google has released an input method editor (IME) for Japanese in a similar style as their Chinese IME. It can be found on their IME page. It looks to be available for Mac OS X, Windows XP SP2, Vista SP1, and Windows 7.

# The Elephant (象)

I will bear criticism like an elephant in battle bears an arrow from a bow. Most people are bad behaviour. (<span lang="ja">戦場の象が、射られた矢にあたっても堪え忍ぶように、われらはひとのそしりを忍ぼう。多くの人は実に性質(たち)が悪いからである。</span>)

One can take a trained elephant even into a crowd. The king himself will ride a trained elephant. He who is disciplined is the best of men, since he can bear criticism. (<span lang="ja">馴らされた象は、戦場にも連れて行かれ、王の乗りものとなる。世のそしりを忍び、自らをおさめた者は、人々の中にあっても最上の者である。</span>)

Trained mules are excellent, and so are thoroughbred horses from the Sindh, and so are great battle elephants, but more excellent than them all is a disciplined man. (<span lang="ja">馴らされた騾馬は良い。インダス河のほとりの血統よき馬も良い。クンジャラという名の大きな象も良い。しかし自己をととのえた人はそれらよりもすぐれている。</span>)

There is no reaching the unattainable with mounts like these, but with himself well under control a disciplined man can get there. (<span lang="ja">何となれば、これらの乗物によっては未到の地(ニルヴァーナ)に行くことはできない。そこへは、慎しみある人が、おのれ自らをよくととのえておもむく。</span>)

Dhammapalo, the elephant, is hard to control in rut. Even when tied up, he refuses his food. The great tusker is thinking of the elephant forest. (<span lang="ja">「財を守る者」という名の象は、発情期にこめかみから液汁をしたたらせて強暴になっているときは、いかんとも制し難い。捕らえられると、一口の食物も食べない。象は象の林を慕っている。</span>)

Then a man is a lie-abed and over-eats, a lazy person who wallows in sleep like a great over-fed hog, a fool like that will be reborn time after time. (<span lang="ja">大食いをして、眠りをこのみ、ころげまわって寝て、まどろんでいる愚鈍な人は、大きな豚のように糧を食べて肥り、くりかえし母胎に入って(迷いの生存をつづける)。</span>)

My mind used formerly to go off wandering wherever it felt like, following its own inclination, but today I shall control it carefully, like a mahout does a rutting elephant. (<span lang="ja">この心は、以前には、望むがままに、欲するがままに、快きがままに、さすらっていた。今やわたくしはその心をすっかり抑制しよう、＿＿＿象使いが鉤をもって、発情期に狂う象を全くおさえつけるように。</span>)

Take pleasure in being careful. Guard your mind well. Extricate yourself from the mire, like a great tusker sunk in the mud. (<span lang="ja">つとめはげむのを楽しめ。おのれの心を護れ。自己を難処から救い出せ。＿＿＿泥沼に落ち込んだ象のように。</span>)

If you find an intelligent companion, a wise and well-behaved person going the same way as yourself, then go along with him, overcoming all dangers, pleased at heart and mindful. (<span lang="ja">もしも思慮深く聡明でまじめな生活をしている人を伴侶として共に歩むことができるならば、あらゆる危険困難に打ち克って、こころ喜び、念いをおちつけて、ともに歩め。</span>)

But if you do not find an intelligent companion, a wise and well-behaved person going the same way as yourself, then go on your way alone, like a king abandoning a conquered kingdom, or like a great elephant in the deep forest. (<span lang="ja">しかし、もしも思慮深く聡明でまじめな生活をしている人を伴侶として共に歩むことができないならば、国を捨てた国王のように、また林の中の象のように、ひとり歩め。</span>)

It is better to travel alone. There is no companionship with a fool. Go on your way alone and commit no evil, without cares like a great elephant in the deep forest. (<span lang="ja">愚かな者を道伴れとするな。独りで行くほうがよい。孤独（ひとり）で歩め。悪いことをするな。求めるところは少なくあれ。＿＿＿林の中にいる象のように。</span>)

It is good to have companions when occasion arises, and it is good to be contented with whatever comes. Merit is good at the close of life, and the elimination of all suffering is good. (<span lang="ja">事がおこったときに、友だちのあるのは楽しい。(大きかろうとも、小さかろうとも)、どんなことにでも満足するのは楽しい。善いことをしておけば、命の終るときに楽しい。(悪いことをしなかったので)、あらゆる苦しみ(の報い)を除くことは楽しい。</span>)

Good is filial devotion to one's mother in the world, and devotion to one's father is good. It is good to be a sanyasi in the world and to be a brahmin too. (<span lang="ja">世に母を敬うことは楽しい。また父を敬うことは楽しい。世に修行者を敬うことは楽しい。世にバラモンを敬うことは楽しい。</span>)

Good is good behaviour up to old age, good is firmly established faith, good is the acquisition of understanding, and abstention from evil is good. (<span lang="ja">老いた日に至るまで戒しめをたもつことは楽しい。信仰が確立していることは楽しい。明らかな知慧を体得することは楽しい。もろもろの悪事をなさないことは楽しい。</span>)

English translation by John Richards. Japanese translation by <span lang="ja">中村元</span> (NAKAMURA Hajime)

# Office 2003, Visual Basic editor and AppLocale

So I was working with a Japanese .xla (Excel add-in) file. I needed to look at something in the source so I fired up the Visual Basic editor within Excel. Upon investigating the form and the various captions it turns out that the Visual Basic editor only displayed them in gibberish (typical decoding issues) or question marks (substituting the .notdef glyph for codepoints). So it seems the Visual Basic editor is either not multi-byte capable (typing directly a string in Japanese into the caption yielded question marks) or it is bound to the locale of the system.

I then remembered AppLocale and fired up Excel through it, setting it to think it is on a Japanese system. Then within Excel I proceeded to start the Visual Basic editor and, sure enough, the text was showing me the Japanese I needed.

I am not sure if I should find this lame or understandable.

# Wah Nam Hong (華南行) in Rotterdam

Here in Rotterdam we have a Chinese supermarket called in Dutch phonetic Cantonese 'Wah Nam Hong', which in Jyutping (waa4 naam4 hong4) stands for the hanzi <span lang="zh">華南行</span>. Literally translated <span lang="zh">華南</span> stands for South China and matches the obvious Cantonese heritage. The <span lang="zh">行</span> stands for a profession or business line.

What is interesting to me is that in Japanese (<span lang="ja">日本語</span>) you read <span lang="ja">華南</span> as <span lang="ja">かなん</span> and it means South China as well. However, <span lang="ja">行</span> would be <span lang="ja">こう</span> or <span lang="ja">ぎょう</span> and has not retained the profession/business line meaning at all.

# Laughter amidst the Stillness

One of the reasons why I enjoy buddhism so much is the occasional (and sometimes even frequent) making fun of being too serious:

いざさらば



A typical 俳諧の連歌 consisting of a 5, 7, 5 metre by Matsuo Bashō (松尾 芭蕉).

This could be translated as such:

Now then, lets go out
to enjoy the snow... until
I slip and fall!


# So simple or why the bone character is written differently

In a previous entry I wrote about how the bone radical is written differently in some Chinese cases. Well, thanks to John H. Jenkins of Apple I found out that the People's Republic of China made a switch from the traditional character to the one that has the corner on the left side. This way the stroke count is reduced by one. But for font designers it offers a small problem, since it means that you have to know your target audience quite well.

To sum it up: PRC uses the newer character, most likely Singapore does so too being another simplified Chinese user. Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Macao, and Taiwan use the older character.

# Bone radical, number 188 - 骨

In the radical classification system called Kang Xi after the Chinese emperor Kang Xi we find 214 radicals. At position 188 we have the radical nicknamed 'bone' (<span lang="ja">骨</span> - hone). It is part of the group of radicals consisting out of 10 strokes (<span lang="ja">部首</span> - bushu).

The above image shows the character 'bone' in four fonts for the three languages of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. The fonts used are STSong (Chinese), MingLiu (Chinese), MS Mincho (Japanese) and Batang (Korean). As can be seen the Chinese font is the only one that squares off the top image's corner on the left-hand side. The other Chinese font and the Japanese and Korean font do so on the right-hand side.

I raised this issue on the Unicode list since the Unicode character charts have three points where 'bone' is encoded, to note: CJK Radicals Supplement 0x2ee3 (left-hand side), Kangxi Radicals 0x2fbb (right-hand side), and CJK Unified Ideographs 0x9aa8 (left-hand side).

I wonder if the discrepancy is a wrongly written letter during buddhist studies which was taken from China to Japan and subsequently later exported to Korea.

# Naruto's 10th ending song lyrics

風が吹いて　痛い　消えない思い

As the wind blows, these painful memories won't disappear.
What were you thinking as you collected the old songs into one?
There is no second chance. There is no second chance. I know how foolish I look
The image of becoming innocent

きっとそれは終わらない
きっとそれは終わらない
This definitely isn't over
This definitely isn't over

ひとりのパレードが　動きだす
The flaming sight of my passion crossing a thousand dreams
passing over the inhuman beasts I seize the world in my hands
The clouds scatter, and the sun sets again.
This one-man parade starts to move

Adventure, Lucky Days, Trials, Climbing, Light and Darkness, Encounters, Life, Mutual Love

もしも言ってしまうなら　あなたの髪を

ワカラナイ　ワカラナイ　うわべだけじゃわからない
だからもっと深くしたい　したい
なんて夢みたい
なんて夢みたい

ふたつのパレードが夜空に溶けて

そいつを灯すように　手を伸ばしては泳ぐ人



# 祈りの歌 (Song of Prayer) - The Hymn of the Fayth

The guys at Square are amazing with some ideas.

The Hymn of the Fayth in Final Fantasy X is as follows:

イ エ ユ イ
ノ ボ メ ノ
レ ン ミ リ
ヨ ジュ ヨ ゴ

ハ サ テ カ ナ エ
ク タ マ エ


Or in romaji:

i e yu i
no bo me no
re n mi ri
yo ju yo go

ha sa te ka na e
ku ta ma e


Now, this means nothing in Japanese, but when you read the first part top to bottom, left to right, syllable by syllable you get:

inoreyo ebonju yumemiyo inoriko

Pray! Ebon Ju (Yu Yevon in the English edition) Dream! Child of Prayer (Fayth).


The second part is read by reading every other syllable for the first two words:

hatenaku sakae tamae

In the end, grant prosperity.


# Gaara - 我愛羅

Of course, some people might recognise the title. Sabaku no Gaara (<span lang="ja">砂瀑の我愛羅</span>) being a character from the anime series. The name means: Gaara of the Desert. The name Gaara (<span lang="ja">我愛羅</span>) itself is a combination of: ga-a(i)-ra, meaning: I, love, demon. In general you could read it as: "I love myself, I am a demon."

The kanji 'ai':

<img alt="" src="http://www.in-nomine.org/~asmodai/kanji/loveai.jpg"/>

For some reason I love this Kanji. Consists of 13 strokes.