10ten, a new Japanese reader extension

There’s a new Japanese reader extension called 10ten in town. For anyone studying or dealing with Japanese content on the web, a few major extensions have made things a bit easier. It all started with the “Rikaichan” extension for FIrefox in 2006. And then someone ported that to Chrome later on under the name “Rikaichamp.” So what’s so special about the 10ten extension? 

The most popular Japanese reading extension, “Rikaichamp,” has served Chrome/Chromium users well since it arrived. Still, it always lacked options and updates compared to the original Firefox Rikaichan. 

I’ve talked a bit about Yomichan in the past, which is very advanced and really for power users. However, it takes manually loading dictionaries which can take a few minutes. Trying to do this across multiple machines ended up being a pain for me, so I opted for the easier/faster setup of Rikaichamp across my computers.

There was a project that started on Firefox a few years back known as “Rikaichamp”, but it was exclusive and never available as a Chrome extension. This developer would constantly update the dictionary files and make improvements to detection. 

I’m now happy to say that “Rikaichamp” has been rebranded as 10ten reader and is now available for Firefox and all Chromium-based browsers. So what’s the big deal? Why should you stop using Rikaikun and choose this extension?

Here are just a few:

Dictionaries updates more regularly

The dictionaries used in Rikaikun didn’t get updated that often, so there was a chance that if you were trying to use it over modern news stories or web posts, it might not catch the latest lingo or slang. 10ten reader automatically checks for updates every week, and when it is updating its dictionary files, you’ll see a progress bar across its icon in the extension bar.

Better at picking up various grammatical forms

10ten reader has been developed to be even better at detecting different grammatical structures and giving you the reading you’re looking for. 

Better detection of famous people

I noticed right away when I was using this extension that it recognizes famous names. Here’s a screenshot of it picking up the former Nintendo CEO.

Theme choices

Rikaichan and Rikaikun had mostly the same color scheme, but now 10ten reader lets you choose from a few different themes, which is much appreciated. 

Multiple kanji dictionaries

If you’re studying kanji, you can choose in the settings what kind of info you’d like to see. This can be for specific kanji learning textbooks or even what level of the JLPT you’d find the kanji being used in. 

Final Thoughts on 10ten reader

This isn’t a full review, but I can already tell you that if you’re a regular user of Rikaikun, you can basically swap it out for this newer and more actively developed extension.

Download link


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