Tools I use when translating novels or written text

My current setup while translating Ryuusei no Kizuna / Bound by Shooting Stars novel

Thought I share these nifty tools I use whenever I'm translating Ryuusei no Kizuna / Bound by Shooting Stars novel. To be honest, most of them are for kanji recognition. Since I'm still in the middle of learning and internalizing kanji, I am still not familiar with most of them. So I thought I post here the tools I use whenever I translate novels or written text.

  • KanjiTomo - KanjiTomo is a desktop program for identifying Japanese characters from image. Kanji lookup is done by pointing the mouse to any image on screen (either from a file, program or web page). Dictionary lookup is done at the same time. Horizontal and vertical text are both supported. It runs in Java so this program works on my Linux Mint 13 as long as I have installed Java.

  • Rikaichan - Rikaichan is a popup Japanese-English/German/French/Russian dictionary tool for Firefox, Thunderbird and Seamonkey. I only use it for Firefox though. I think KanjiTomo got the idea of just hovering the Japanese text from this Firefox addon app. Behaviour is relatively the same of KanjiTomo.

  • Jisho.org - Denshi Jisho (meaning "electronic dictionary") is an online Japanese dictionary that focuses on powerful search features and an easy-to-use interface. This site helps to verify the translations I got from KanjiTomo or Rikaichan. Though I tend to use it more when searching kanjis via their radicals in the site's tool, search kanji by radicals.

  • Google's "Define" & Google Translate - Honestly, I next to don't use Google Translate's sentence translations because most of the time, the sentence structure is wrong. What I tend to use though are its word translations. I tend to look up for synonyms of the translation that would sound more natural in English. That's why I also use the Google's Define so that I can search for other ways to reword a clunky English translation.

  • Thesaurus.com - This site looks up for synonyms and related words of the English language. The same as Google's Define, I tend to use this site to search for words to make them sound more natural in English, or words that would fit for certain characters (dialogue typesetting) in the title.

As for the rest of translating, you really have to be familiar with the grammar and structure of the Japanese language. But keep in mind that you have to make the English translation sound natural, so you have to be relatively creative in translating. (since comparing Japanese and English, the two are really far from each other compared to my native language and Japanese)

Are there any other translation tools you use? If you have suggestions, comments or corrections, kindly post at the Disqus comment section below. Thanks!