It's a duck pond.
Why aren't there any ducks?
I don't know. There's never any ducks.
Then how do you know it's a duck pond?
Monday, October 31
So if you were a guy cursed to turn into a girl (or vise versa) whose curse would you prefer?
Ranma's from Ranma½
Futaba's from Futaba-kun Change
Maze's from Maze: Megaburst Space
Megumi's from Tenshi na Konamaiki
And am I missing any important examples? One-off switchers (Keiichi from OMG), body transfers (Galaxy Angel), technological assists (Dual) and cases of straightforward parental confusion (Ryuunosuke from Urusei Yatsura) need not apply. Just those who are stuck with the problem whether they like it or not.
Friday, October 28
Sometimes dreams really do come true!
(via Chizumatic (20051026))
Thursday, October 27
There's a new episode of Bleach out, number 55. Maybe because something actually happened last week, there are 27,000 people downloading it right now. That's about 6 terabytes of data, or 6 months of munu. For one episode of one show. Subtitled.
I was looking around for a BitTorrent tracker on the weekend to host my anime video clips, and was annoyed because most of them seem to be written in C, and require compiling and installation rather than just being plonked on the server. This is why. If you have 27,000 people hitting your server at once, your program has to run as fast as possible.
Since I don't have 27,000 people hitting my torrents - or even 27 - this is something of a nuisance, but that's how BitTorrent is designed. The more people downloading, the better it works.
Wednesday, October 26
I was looking for more anime to extract clips from, and I thought to myself Rizelmine, that had a nice opening sequence. So I look on the server and... No Rizelmine. Check the unsorted directory. Nope. Check the backup folder. Nothing.
Well, damn and blast. Rizelmine came out a couple of years ago, so it would be licensed by now for sure, and I'd have to buy it on DVD, rip it, and re-encode it before I could actually make the clip. I'll be doing that soon enough (once I get through the fansubs), but it was a bit annoying that I'd lost a series that I once had. (And a bit disturbing that it had happened at all. I thought I'd juggled the various server switches smoothly enough not to have lost entire directories full of anime.)
Turns out, though, that no-one's bothered to pick up Rizelmine. It's still in fansub. Clicky clicky, download.
In fact, according to my list, it's backed up on DVD #20, but I don't know if that's the full series or just the first half. Just the first half, I think, because it says that Kokoro Library is on there as well, and it wouldn't all fit if it was the full two seasons of Rizelmine.
Downloading is easier, anyway.
(If I was with Telstra on one of their non-capped broadband plans, they'd charge me $510 to download that much data. Yeah. Still. In 2005. Bunch of thieves.)
Tuesday, October 25
Okay, sometimes I'm a bit slow. I only just now realised why 2x2 = Shinobuden:
I am a female ninja
(watashi I, kunoichi a female ninja)
Ninin ga Shinobu desu
2x2 = Shinobu (ni two, so ninin two-two; Shinobu is her name, and desu meaning is, or in this case, am. I'm not sure precisely what ga means here. Note that the verb comes at the end, so the first line makes no real sense by itself. Or at least is ungrammatical.)
Why the 2x2? Well, Shinobu is a trainee ninja, and when exercising her ninja talents she has a tendency to say nin nin, as in ninja. So nin nin becomes two times two.
I'm sure you wanted to know that.
The video clips for Shinobuden are very cute, particularly the closing sequence, which is done in claymation. (So is the closing sequence for Futakoi Alternative, by the way.) You can download them here; three seeds, no waiting. (Actually, I think the seed count is wrong, but there are at least two.)
Just don't ask me where the -den suffix comes from.
I've added another collection of anime clips for you to enjoy. If enjoy is the right word. From the 12th-century Hungarian historical drama of Chrno Crusade to the Amazonian documentary masterpiece Green Green; from the psychological thriller He Is My Master to the gritty study of pre-teen pregnancy in the slums of Osaka in Mama Is A 4th Grader, these clips will have you on the edge of your seat, and sometimes over the edge.
As always, downloads will be slow until I get a second seed up and running.
(Warning for diabetics: Contains sugar.)
VirtualDub doesn't automatically insert keyframes if you do a direct stream copy. That's why sometimes I can't get a clip to start at exactly the right frame - but it works if I use a different episode of the series. It's latching on to the nearest keyframe, and some encoders are very sparing with them.
Choose fast recompress from the menu, though, and you're all set.
Sunday, October 23
I have put up a torrent of my collection of anime clips - opening and closing credits of various shows - here. The tracker page is here if you're interested. The total size is 1,830MB, so it might take a while to download.
Currently there's just the one torrent containing all the clips; creating and seeding dozens of torrents is too much trouble unless there's a lot of interest in this.
Let me know if you have problems downloading (other than speed; it will be slow to start with until I get another seed running), or with playing any of the files.
Oh yeah, this includes the opening and closing credits of Kamichu! in "glorious fake HDTV". Fake it may be, but it is significantly better than the standard 640x360 files.
Wednesday, October 19
I have for some time now been struggling to extract a video clip of the closing credits of Kamichu!, which is one of the best shows to come out of Japan this year. I do this all the time, and have amassed quite a collection - which is currently off-line until I can make it into a torrent, because it was using up more than 20GB of bandwidth a day.*
Anyway, for this work I use the simple but very functional VirtualDub. VirtualDub lets me say "start here" and "stop there" and snip out a minute and a half of video without the time-consuming (and quality-destroying) re-encoding. It just grabs what's there, bit-for-bit (and creates new keyframes as necessary).
But VirtualDub is designed for AVIs with fixed bit-rate MP3 soundtracks. Kamichu! has been released so-far as an HDTV** Matroska file with AAC audio. Standard VirtualDub won't have a bar of it. VirtualDubMod, which has been patched to handle Matroska files, crashes violently on Kamichu!
I'm not that easy to stop, however. I used MKVextract to split the Matroska file into an XVID-encoded video-only AVI and a separate AAC audio file. Then I used All Converter to turn the AAC file into a raw WAV. Then I fired up VirtualDub again, and told it to load the video from the AVI and the audio from the WAV, and re-interleave them into a new AVI file and snip out this bit (the opening credits) and that bit (the closing credits) for me.
Which it did. And lo, the opening credits were very good. But the closing credits were teh suck, because the audio was hugely, and I mean hugely out of sync with the video, and the main reason that the closing credits of Kamichu! are cute is that they are in sync with the music. As you will see when I put them up for you to download. Via Bittorrent.
This caused a certain amount of puzzlement as it slowly dawned on me that not only were the audio and video out of sync, but that the problem became worse over time. Close examination indicated that even if they were in sync at the start of the clip, they were out by fifteen or twenty seconds at the end, which is a hell of a lot.
This, it turns out, is because the closing credits run at 30 frames per second, while the rest of the show runs at 24 fps. Why anyone would wish to do that I have no idea, but that is indeed what they have done. In the original video file it works just fine, but when I clip out the closing credits, it falls apart. But if I take that clip and tell it hey, you run at 30 fps... It works!
But you can't see it, because we have no bandwidth left.
* Between the anime fans and the bastard referrer spammers, the bandwidth well has run dry this month. I was planning to get another server to offload some of our stuff, but the hosting company seems to have run out as well.
** As it happens, it's really just up-converted anamorphic widescreen 704x480 video, not native 720p. It still looks pretty.
Saturday, October 15
In the series Pretty Cure (which is targeted at pre-teen girls, near as I can tell), the amorphous monster thingies that get summoned by the bad guys are known as zakenna. Or at least, that's the sound they make.
In the current episode of Bleach that I'm watching (about ep. 319 or so), the main character says zakenna at one point, and the subtitle comes up Screw you!
Blink blink. It's a very plausible translation in the context (a heated argument), but is that really what the monster is saying in every episode of PreCure?
[zakennayo] (exp) (X) (vulg) fuck you!/don't fuck around!/don't be a screw off!Heh.
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