How do I write by hand, for Kanji not suggested by Romaji IME, on laptop?

For example, on Android smartphone / tablet, I am using two Japanese IME’s at the moment - Google Keyboard’s QWERTY Romaji IME, and handwriting (手書き) IME.

手書き appears to be very convenient. as it recognizes even small Kana and obsolete Kana. I don’t have to scroll, and find things like Katakana that IME doesn’t like. Even more is the case for Kanji compounds.


Now, for laptops, are there any good options? Are there any convenient tools I should buy? (e.g. I might be able to write on a tablet input device, but it won’t be converted to searchable text. But then, I haven’t bought a tablet device yet.)

Actually, my laptop already uses a touchscreen, and comes with a stylus.

To complicate the matter, my laptop OS isn’t Windows, nor macOS, but Arch Linux with Xfce desktop (and fcitx5 IME), but I should be able to get by this, somehow. (that is, least of the worries)

3 Likes

If kanji isn’t being suggested by the IME, maybe you just need to give it more context.

1 Like

Time comes as well, that typing the whole sentence, and yet nothing of resemblance is in IME’s suggestion. (in particular, all Katakana is commonly not suggested)

Well, there might be only another good way - type another vocabulary with the Kanji, and delete the unrelated parts. - But, that doesn’t always work too.

After that, I would normally know what to search for - then copy-paste from the internet; but that isn’t convenient (and not cool).

Does your computer have a handwriting input option? Mine does, so I just change the language used to Japanese and can write that way

1 Like

Any examples where this doesn’t work? Because afaik, that’s how Japanese people would do it too, and it’s definitely faster than writing the kanji by hand.

As someone typing up a list of Japanese names for an event, I guarantee you it’d be faster to write it for some.

1 Like

I’ve only ever been able to get mozc/fcitx working reliably in Arch, but I use a custom AwesomeWM DE so I don’t know how well that translates to Xfce.

But I don’t think I’ve ever come across handwriting recognition IME.

Honestly, the fact that your touchscreen works reliably at all in Linux is what I’d call a win. :wink:

As far as prediction goes, my ranking would be:

MacOS > Smartphones IOS and Android > Windows >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Linux

1 Like

I am 100% certain Windows can, and by Microsoft itself, and actually, I might have seen it; because Windows support touchscreen much more since Windows 8.

Linux might need a dedicated software, but it’s not the default (perhaps CellWriter, but not sure if it works as an IME) - tegaki-recognize seems to be the best one, but nowhere as good a Google Keyboard for Android. Also, for some reason, it doesn’t output Katakana.

No idea about macOS, even if you can plug-in a tablet input.

lol yes, but I have another issue to prefer Linux over Windows (that Japanese people, or English based Japanese learners, wouldn’t have) - https://community.wanikani.com/t/juggling-between-more-than-2-keyboard-layouts-languages-on-pc/55456

Another thing is, I don’t exactly like Linux; but I pretty much hate Microsoft’s stance, even as of lately.

Single point input already works by default (perhaps due to the kernel), but two finger requires a little setup and doesn’t work well. I can guess that pinch in and pinch out would sucks.

And (unrelated to the topic) gravity sensor, is a whole thing that even if it requires setup, it would still wouldn’t work reliably.

1 Like

Older versions of mozc has hand writing tools, then for some reasons, it was removed from the originating repo. - https://wiki.archlinux.org/title/Talk:Mozc

I also am using fcitx5 + mozc (made a mistaking thinking I was using IBus)

1 Like