Sunday, June 06


Daily News Stuff 6 June 2021

Whirling Deadlines Edition

Top Story

  • POKEGB is an emulator for the Nintendo Gameboy.  It currently only works for one game, Pokemon Blue.

    But it's 62 lines of code and looks like, well, you'll see.

Anime of the day is Bleach, which ran for 366 episodes from 2004 to 2012.  Most of that run is crap, though, and should be actively avoided.  Even the hard-core fans will tell you to avoid the so-called Bount Arc, which stood out as boring filler in a series that was more filler than content in the first place.

Except season one.

After a while spent watching it while doing something else, I gave up on the show entirely perhaps a third of the way through.  Later on, remembering that I had liked it originally, I went back and rewatched the beginning.  And the beginning is good.  In fact, the whole first season is good.

Then the showrunners realised they had a hit on their hands and they were burning through the source material too quickly, so rather than pausing the show to allow the manga to catch up, they slowed down the pace of the show.  The transition between the tightly-written and fast-paced first season and the wallowing second season is jarring when you go back knowing what happened.  At the time I was waiting for the show to return to its earlier pace, but it never does.

If you're a completionist, this is definitely one to avoid.  20 good episodes don't make up for 346 bad ones.

Tech News

  • Apple may have fixed the issue reporting reduced SSD lifespans on M1 Macs.  (Tom's Hardware)

    All M1 Macs have their SSDs soldered onto the motherboard and encrypted by a chip also soldered onto the motherboard, so if it wears out your computer is dead and you can't even boot from a backup drive.  So having the operating system reporting rapid wear on the SSD was an unwelcome feature.

    Apple says the bug was in the reporting software, and the drives themselves are fine.  We'll see, but it's probably true; the drives and their T2 controller chips have been used in previous Mac models without issues.

  • Meanwhile second (or is it third) tier SSD maker PNY has kind of done the opposite.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Their XLR8 drive just got an update, and the quoted drive lifespan has been reduced by 80% - without any change to the product name or model number.

  • All Zen 4 desktop CPUs will be APUs.  (WCCFTech)

    Unless they're not, since this is all leaks.

    Some of it - like the fact that Zen 4 CPU chiplets will be made on TSMC's 5nm node - has been officially confirmed.  

    More significantly, the I/O chiplet will moved from Global Foundries' older 12nm process to TSMC's new 6nm process.  That doesn't make much difference for just an I/O die because I/O circuits don't shrink that much.  But the new I/O die has a GPU on board, and that benefits enormously from the newer process.

    I'm not sure why they didn't do this with Zen 2, though they probably had enough on their plate just switching over to 7nm and the chiplet architecture.  Even a small and slow GPU is extremely useful when building or testing a system, because as long as the CPU is working you can get video out.

    No leaks as to the configuration of the GPU, but I'm expecting something similar to the current laptop parts, with the next-generation laptops parts being the first to get higher-end integrated graphics.

  • Qualcomm's Snapdragon 895 will be manufactured on Samsung's 4nm node.  (WCCFTech)

    That's likely because TSMC's initial production capacity for 4nm - and given the timing, that's starting right about now - has been bought out by Apple.  TSMC is already shipping 5nm in volume but most of their customers are still on 7nm because, again, Apple booked out 5nm capacity.

    And Apple has reportedly booked out initial capacity at 3nm as well.

    While I'd love to see AMD processors and graphics cards on 5nm this year rather than next year, the truth is that Apple paid for TSMC's massive R&D budget over the last decade.

    So all those people with more dollars than sense buying Apple's shiny baubles year after year are the reason I can now just push a button and deploy a 96-core server at my day job, and the reason the Xbox Series X is so much better than the Xbox One X.

  • Big Tech, having worked tirelessly to put socialists into office, have just discovered that they've put socialists into office.  (BBC)

    The G7 economies are pushing a new unified tax plan to shake down multinationals for every penny they've got.

    And Big Tech has made quite sure that they have no friends on either side of the aisle.

  • Windows 11?  With one email, Microsoft has the attention of the world.  (

    This is on the premium side of the site - commentary and analysis rather than news and reviews, but you can read it with a free subscription and Paul Thurrott is a decent guy.

    Since the new announcement hasn't happened yet, most of the article covers the missteps Microsoft has made in recent years and what they need to do to recover.

    I was going to pair this with a counterpoint article that said that no-one cares about the new version of Windows, but when I followed the link I found that the article didn't actually say that.

    So, Microsoft, please don't screw this up.  I recently reinstalled a music editing package I originally bought in 2006, and which hasn't been updated in nearly that long - and it worked.  It simply worked.  It's a 32-bit app, and those aren't supported at all on modern versions of MacOS, but on Windows it simply worked.

    I appreciate that.  But please try to make some progress on some of your own stuff that hasn't been updated since 2006.

Not Exactly Tech News

  • Amelia Watson of Hololive held her long-awaited charity stream today, raising funds for animal shelters.  This is the first charity stream Hololive has run by itself, and it was viewed as something of a test case.

    She reached three times her original goal before the stream could even start, and ended at more than fifteen times.

    Watch the counter when she appears on stream.  It goes up by $18,000 in three minutes.

Twitter Gonna Twitter Video of the Day

Twitter's going to automatically mute and block accounts, which comes as startling news to me after getting suspended 116 times in a single year before they gave up and banned me entirely.

Everything not compulsory is forbidden.  Most of what is compulsory is also forbidden, because fuck you, that's why.

Panty and Stocking Anime Music Video of the Day

The show is Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, and while it's certainly not one of may favourites - I didn't even make it through the single season - this is a great clip.

It's done in a cheap animation style by people who actually know how to animate.  It's also loaded with gross-out humour.  So if you like that sort of thing, maybe take a look.

I'm So Classy Anime Music Video of the Day

This video is from exactly the opposite end of the AMV spectrum, but it's every bit as good, because good is a scalar metric imposed on an infinitely differentiable Riemannian manifold.

Disclaimer: Bozhe moi.  This I know from nothing.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 05:40 PM | Comments (7) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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1 Redstate says that Jack is calling access to Twitter a human right.  We can be sure he does not believe this, or that he believes that governments legitimately disregard human rights when they do so capriciously and arbitrarily. 

I liked the Bleach manga, and at the same time think the mid to late Bleach manga is a disaster that really shows off Kubo Tite's weaknesses.  Up through the butterfly version of the 'Soul Society arc' antagonist is fairly reasonable.

His previous incomplete series, Zombie Powder, had some of the warning signs. 

Early Bleach seems promising in a bunch of ways.  And those huge set piece many party battles are something that not many pull off as well. 

He uses a lot of characters, and is bad at resolving plots involving them all.  The resolution to Bleach is not something that really satisfies someone of conservative values within American culture.  Folks who betray subordinates are unjustly rewarded. 

In Bleach's day, Bleach, Naruto and One Piece were the big names in the Shonen Jump titles.  Naruto's manga had an ending that I thought was appropriate.  I think One Piece hasn't ended, and it still seemed pretty reasonable last time I collected info on it.  That said, back when I was reading scanlations, I liked long running Shonen Jump manga of the sort where one talks about the pacing of tournament arcs. 

Posted by: PatBuckman at Monday, June 07 2021 01:31 AM (6y7dz)

2 For me, the start of Bleach was good.  Then it seemed to turn into an unending series of fights/battles.  I started getting bored with it and jumped ahead about 20 episodes, and they were still in the same building and still fighting.  I then jumped ahead about 50 episodes and they were in the next building...and were fighting.  At least, that's how I remember it.  Great if you are big into battle scenes, but it wasn't exactly my thing.

Posted by: Frank at Monday, June 07 2021 05:35 AM (rglbH)

3 I stopped watching and reading Bleach when I realized they were never going back to Earth, and all those characters and stories just didn't matter. It wasn't a deliberate bait&switch so much as the writer losing interest in the story he started out telling.


Posted by: J Greely at Monday, June 07 2021 07:39 AM (ZlYZd)

4 Tite apparently had a bunch of big ideas, and could get them started, but sucked at tying them off. Forex, a later character, Shinji, was apparently teased very early in Bleach's run. Anyway, as long as Bleach was popular, Shonen Jump tolerated Tite doing arc after lengthy arc of new characters fighting the next mass battle. As the popularity waned, they seemed to have pushed him to wrap things up, and maybe he was no longer interested. Fake Karakura town arc was technically on Earth, and so was a lot of the epilogue.

Posted by: PatBuckman at Monday, June 07 2021 08:00 AM (6y7dz)

I stopped watching and reading Bleach when I realized they were never going back to Earth
Yep.  I was waiting for them to rescue Rukia and return to the main plot.  Then I was waiting for the new plotline to go somewhere.  Then I gave up entirely.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Monday, June 07 2021 11:21 AM (PiXy!)

6 J, I think commenting may be broken at your site.  I tried to leave one today and the submit button didn't do anything--the throbber didn't start spinning, like the button wasn't hooked up.  Tried refreshing the page, no help.

Posted by: Rick C at Monday, June 07 2021 01:02 PM (eqaFC)

7 (Thanks; I restarted the comments server on my site and was able to add one)


Posted by: J Greely at Monday, June 07 2021 04:01 PM (ZlYZd)

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Apple pies are delicious. But never mind apple pies. What colour is a green orange?

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