TheChineseReader is an very useful website for people learning to read Mandarin Chinese. You can paste in any text in Mandarin and the website will use a large variety of tools (see Resources & Credits below) to transform the text into clickable annotations.

This is wonderful for anyone having difficulty with a Chinese text and wanting that extra bit of help. It could also give some idea to people who know no Mandarin (or read no Mandarin) and are attempting to understand a website written in Chinese characters.

Excellent tool - many thanks Adam!

From Website

About the Reader

This project came about in response to the continually increasing number of english-speakers learning chinese. After many years studying chinese myself, and seeing friends do likewise, there were a number of tedious functions I came to feel a computer was better suited to do. Some hair-pulling web-development later, the TheChineseReader™ (TCR) was born.

The feautures of this site are constantly under development, though the speed of that development may not be all too impressive. If you have suggestions for fixes, new features, or other general feedback & inquiries, please contact

TCR is not a commercial site per se, though we are supported by sponsored advertisements, which help cover the costs of hosting, development, and maintenance. Thanks for understanding.

About the Creator

My name is Adam. I am a recent graduate of UPenn, now living in San Francisco. I work for a Management Consultancy, which leaves not that much time to work on this site. =) But I'll try to keep it up to date and add features when time permits.

Resources & Credits

The reader would not function very well without the unsung contributions of all those behind the technologies and data-resources used in this site—particularly those in the open-source community. I would like to take a moment to acknowledge them:

Unihan Database: this database provides the foundation for all of the single character entries and cantonese functionality. It is being used here under the GNU license, and is available at the Unicode website.

CeDict Database: this database proides the data behind all multi-character lookups. An incredible amount of work has gone into this project, and I applaud the people who make it possible. It is being used here under the GNU license, and is available at the Cedict website.

Ruby On Rails: the entire site is coded in the Ruby On Rails (RoR) framework. RoR is a web-application development paradigm that is 100% open-source, and in this developers opinion, the best in class. Again, profuse thanks to those who enable this and so many other sites to be realized through their efforts.

MySQL: alongside the RoR, this site is powered by a MySQL database. MySQL is arguably the most powerful open-source relational-DB package in the world. And it has contributed more than its fair share to web-apps everywhere.

Wenlin Software: Wenlin (文林) is a piece of commerical software whose aid to chinese-learners is almost unquantifiable. I include it in the credits here because thier mouse-over dictionary lookup is the rightful inspiration for the reader's core functionality.