Learn Japanese Online
Japanese Material from MIT:
Courses 1 through 4 are working. Good way to learn your first 300 or so kanji.
Jim Breen's amazing WWWJDIC:
The online Japanese dictionary. You can look up kanji through any number of methods, and you can paste in japanese text and have all the kanji compounds translated, very good for beginning to read when you're still a little shy in the kanji department.
Vashon's Japanese Pages:
I always intended to have Hiragana and Katakana tables and have a crossreferenced a list of the Joyo Kanji (the Kanji that the Japanese government requires students learn in school), but this guy beat me to the punch. Even has printer friendly files, what more could you ask for?
Excellent set of online flash cards.
Now enter Kanji. Kanji do not represent syllables however, they represent words. Yes! Kanji are logograms. Again individual Kanji represent individual words. Combining Kanji gives you compound words.
Here's an example:
The following symbol represents electricity:
And this symbol represents talk:
Put them together and represents telephone.
This of course is a gross oversimplification...
and also. The all-powerful ed has also contributed!.