JiShop for Windows hasn't yet known
upgrades as cardinal as version 8.0. The application has been moved to a new programming platform,
with full support of Unicode and powerful graphics. The user interface is drastically redesigned.
What used to be placed in several windows is now placed on different tabs of the same large window
divided into three panels. If you want, you can hide one or two panels out of these three and
concentrate on working with the phonetic dictionary or with the kanji drill. You can also switch
to two-panel layout when the left and right panels are united into one; this layout is a default
for small screens.
6753 kanji outside the computer standard JIS X 0208 have been provisionally included in the dictionary database. These characters were included in supplementary standards: JIS X 0212 or, later, JIS X 0213 (many of them in both). The provisional dictionary information for them is taken from KANJIDIC2 file. Their graphical structure isn't specified in the database, so you can't see their decomposition or stroke-order diagram. You also can't find them by radicals. Only search by readings or meanings is supported, as well as copy-paste operations. By default, these kanji are outside the search scope.
Popup hints for kanji now give you not only the basic meanings of characters but also their readings and utility. Popup hints for radicals are also modified. Both are customizable.
Stylistical and explanatory notes (lit., eleg., hist., etc.) are now highlighted by color, greenish by default. You can change it.
Outer panel of the phonetic dictionary (which comes out by a click on an arrow or link and contains the definition of a single word) is also a part of the single-window interface. You can drag it by the mouse; you can also double-click on it making sure it doesn't automatically hide.
Kanji in drill groups can now be dragged to new position by the mouse. The old way (by arrow keys) is still supported, too.
Kanji drill has a new checkbox called "Show immediately". When it is on, the data about a kanji comes out along with the kanji itself. This option can be useful in some strategies of learning.
Kanji search results can now be grouped by On readings, placed in either Latin alphabetic order or in the order of "Gojuon" (A-I-U-E-O...). For any grouping option, the order can be either direct or inverse.
Similar options are provided for the unfolded list, independently of the main search result panel. The unfolded list format is now customizable, you can omit certain elements in it.
"Stay on top of other windows" option is introduced. It can be useful when you are working with the phonetic dictionary, copying and pasting Japanese words from external sources. To turn on this option, click on the button on the phonetic dictionary tab.
JiShop Concise now functions in a different way. Instead of providing 30 days for evaluation at the Advanced level, the levels are switched on the day-of-the-week basis. JiShop Concise switched to the Plus level on Friday, and to the Advanced level on weekend. JiShop Plus also switches to the Advanced level on weekend.
100 more kanji entries have been edited, and more than 5000 compound words have been added to the phonetic dictionary.
I should also mention some shortcomings of version 8.0 compared to previous ones:
- The options of printing are temporarily removed. They will probably be back in the next version, implemented better than before.
- Plain text output is now in one color and in one font (FireMonkey platform doesn't support RichText yet).
- The visual style isn't customizable.
- Scrolling parameters of scroll boxes are not available for the programmer to adjust. For example, clicking on the scroll bar in the table of radicals will scroll it not by an entire page but by several rows. Therefore it is more convenient to use the buttons and , or PgDn/PgUp keys.