Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Stormtrooper gets funky in Shibuya: Shibuya Dance Trooper

Halloween Hello Kitty!

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Ninja Parade Slips Through Town Unnoticed Once Again

This is funny xD

Ninja Parade Slips Through Town Unnoticed Once Again

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Slot that cartridge!

I did my usual anime blog rounds today, and I come to find most of them are talking about the new Gundam 00 series...
(While it is exciting in itself, I haven't much to say about it, so if someone else would rather report on it be my guest.)

But I did find something interesting. Non-anime related too actually.

It's basically a drive that lets you dock and swap out hard drives. This eliminates the need for enclosures on new hard drives, or even having to open and install a drive inside of a computer. Just plug and play!
It uses USB technology, so the base still only allows it to act like any other external hard drive.

Learn more here.

Anime news soon, I promise!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Phone Measures Bad Breath, Body Fat

The Japanese phone company DoCoMo released a new cell phone earlier this month that can measure body fat, bad breath, register calories the carrier is burning, among other functions.

As radio comedian Garrison Keillor says in his weekly comedy/variety radio show, A Prairie Home Companion, "You're supposed to keep track of all this and still drive your car? ....I guess it is able to look up where you have ordered your food from."

In a world where we expect nearly all electronics (lol, Bee Movie) to have a telephone, television, DVD player, or some other random technologies built into them as a matter of convenience, The Fitness Phone provides a service just the opposite of supporting a lazy lifestyle.

NTT DoCoMo spokesperson Kentaro Endo says, "Anybody trying to stay fit could use this phone. But we think overweight businessmen and women on diets would be our primary customers."

Of course, with a built-in breathalyser, this phone may support other lifestyles as well...

More here.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Comet Erupts in Brilliant Show

What a fated day this has been. I had a topic I wanted to share in the Community Blog, and I come to find it has a Japanese relation!

From ScienceDaily [Boldness added for emphasis]:

A once-faint comet has made a sudden leap from obscurity to center stage. Comet 17P Holmes, now visible to northern hemisphere residents, increased its brightness by a factor of one million this week, going from magnitude 17 to 2. This makes it visible to the unaided eye as well as binoculars and telescopes, offering a unique viewing opportunity for sky watchers.

The comet could fade in a matter of days or weeks, so astronomers recommend that viewers take a look now.

Amateur astronomer Edwin Holmes, who was looking at the Andromeda galaxy at the time, discovered Comet Holmes in 1892. The comet has presented a mystery to astronomers ever since. It likely was undergoing a similar outburst when discovered, since it reached 4th magnitude and was faintly visible to the unaided eye.

The comet orbits the Sun once every 7 years at a distance of about 200 million miles (compared to Earth’s 93-million-mile orbit).

And from Sky and Telescope Magazine, here is our Japanese relation:

As Earth continued to turn, nightfall arrived in Japan. "It is visible with naked eyes in a large city!" posted Seiichi Yoshida, who observed the comet from beside Tsurumi River in Yokohama. By 17:15 Universal Time he was describing Comet Holmes as magnitude 2.8.

From Kip:

Essentially, Japan broke the news this morning that the comet is visible with the naked eye.
I asked our planetary expert who is a regular speaker on the morning radio show I am a part of, who first told me word of the comet just came in from Japan, if it would be visible with such a bright full moon. He says it may hurt viewing of the comet, but not by much, and 10:00 EST (not sure how or when it will appear in other parts of the hemisphere) is the best time to view it.

Keep your eyes on the skies Ani-Pock!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The word "Pocky" really means

I'm unsure if this should go here, but I was doing some research on some words in Shakespeare's play "Hamlet" and cam across the word "Pocky". Yes, Pocky is a very famous biscuit stick produced by Glico, and a famous site admin. Now to the main point of the post. "Pocky" in olde English means one infected with the "pox" which probably refers to the small pox that was going around at the time. The other supposed meaning is one infected with a disease. I'm not really sure what they were thinking, but it would make one think twice before taking Pocky from a stranger, no?

Monday, October 22, 2007

Panic at the Pool

I guess this video has been just about everywhere, CNN, AotS, and now Ani-Pock!

Below is a video of swimmers in a wave pool that is a popular spot during the Oban holiday week:

The wave pool in the video was broken until the afternoon, which immediately caused all of the visitors to flock to the pool when word went around that it was fixed.

Link to the site in the video (same sauce as my last post ;D ).

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Japanese TV: Japan's tallest and shortest person

I like the girls reaction when she sees the tall one xD

Japanese TV: Narrow Jumping Challenge

Via The Haneru no Tobira guys attempt to jump through a progressively narrow space between poles:

Saturday, October 20, 2007

I had some Chikn'-on-a-stik recently... but this is crazy!

The Kinbashi Gold Chopsticks come packaged in two sets of five for 4,515 yen.
Although they are regular, wooden chopsticks at heart, they contain gold leaf flakes between the utensils, so that --when broken over food-- they will cause the edible gold leaf to fall on the meal.

Sauce... er, source: CScout Japan.

The Easiest Cosplay Ever

I am attending a cosplay event tomorrow. They only gave us two weeks to prepare, so I went for easy and cheap.

Here is the fruits of my labor:

Yep, I made that. We're talking an old, black plastic cover notebook, a whiteout pen, and something to reference the Death Note typeface. I'm no artist by any means, nor a good handwriter, but this was easy!
Toss in a basket of apples, wear a white shirt (unbuttoned at the top), a loosend red tie, and you're Light from Death Note.

As a bonus, if you can get a buddy to wear a white T-shirt, mess up his hair, hold things funny all day, and follow you around, you've got L!
Hey! So there is an even easier cosplay subject!

Japanese Urban Camouflage!

"The New York Times has posted a set of photos that show off some of Japanese clothing designer Aya Tsukioka’s “urban camouflage” safety products, such as this vending machine dress that a woman can use to hide herself when pursued by criminals:"

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Site News: Anime page updated

Hi All,

I just found this great new site for watching Anime online! It looks like it has a bunch hosted on various sites. To check it out, just click on the Anime button now!


Some of the selections:
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What will you carve on your pumpkin this Halloween? Leave a comment!

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Japanese TV: Pan-kun Hates Snakes!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Japanese TV: Japanese Scientists Create Perfect Mirror Within Life-Sized Metal Ball, Put TV Show Hosts Inside

Its really weird when he backs up!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Japanese TV: Chimp runs through Obstacle Course!

Speedy guy!

U-Tsu-Shi-O-Mi virtual humanoid

Researcher Michihiko Shoji, formerly of NTT DoCoMo, helped create U-Tsu-Shi-O-Mi as a tool for enhancing virtual reality simulations. He is now employed at the Yokohama National University Venture Business Laboratory, where he continues to work on improving the virtual humanoid. The system, which currently requires a lot of bulky and expensive equipment to run, will likely see its first real-world applications in arcade-style video games. However, Shoji also sees a potential market for personal virtual humanoids, and is looking at ways to reduce the size and cost to make it suitable for general household use.
Here is a video of U-Tsu-Shi-O-Mi.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Toyota's latest concept car: the RiN !!!!

Rin your future car!!! A rinneh mobile!!!
"Designed to promote harmony with nature and evoke a warm, fuzzy feeling inside, the eco-friendly Toyota RiN concept car features heated ergonomic seats, an oxygen level regulator, a spot humidifier, a “mood training” steering control system that monitors the driver’s psychological state, and greenish glass that protects against UV and infrared light while enhancing the natural beauty of the view outside. The exterior design was inspired by Japan’s old-growth Cryptomeria trees known as yakusugi, which are found on Yakushima island, a natural World Heritage Site known for its pristine, ancient forests."

Japanese TV: 24 HOUR TAG xDDD

How do they come up with these ideas??? 4 guys get locked in a big room where they have to play tag for 24 hours.

The rest of the parts are here!

AMV Hell 3: The Motion Picture II: AMV Hell 4: The Last One, Released This Week

I recently caught AMV Hell 4, the sequel to the infamous cult anime AMV this week, which, in a blogpost this April, I called "a tasty, stone soup AMV".
And, like THC says, and I paraphrase, it is one hour and twenty-four minutes of greatness.
But not excellence mind you.

I am a big fan of AMVH3, and I feel, even though #4 was good, it didn't live up to the expectations #3 created.

In the sequel, a lot of the AMV clips were done with parody songs, which are good and funny on their own, but to then draw meaning out of anime clips set to this music, it makes it seem like the AMV submitters to this collaborative project were trying too hard to be funny. The video has some gems with spoofs on commercials including one of the "diabeetus" spokesperson, Wilford Brimley. The running gag (AMVH has some good ones) for this AMV was a spoof on the Imogen Heap single, "Hide and Seek", (Mmmm, whacha say? *Fires Gun*); even the YATTA! song makes an appearance. The best moments are when they use some real music classics and pop refrences, like the opening theme music to Lost and J. Geils' "Centerfold".

Several scenes in the video are overdone. The SHnY "LiveAlive" scene got played far too often (it was used in the friggin trailer for the video afterall!), thank goodness for submitters sending in AMVs from Beck and other anime, showing that Haruhi isn't the only one with a guitar in all of anime. Death Note got played out far too much as well, making up eighteen of the 250-some AMV clips used.

AMVH4 screened first at Anime Weekend Atlanta in late September, where it met with a large audience of otaku who came, in some cases, just to be the first to see the opening night screening of AMVH4.

The AMVH movies are good for a laugh anyway, and have really become a cultural phenomenon in Animedom. They also portray a lot of different anime, which you might use as a catalog, or sampler, if you will, to pick out anime clips you thought looked interesting, and then reference them, and watch the serieses(es)! If you haven't watched the AMVH series yet, scoot on over to the AMV Hell website, where the newest video is available for torrent or direct download.

Here's the first part (of nine):

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Japanese TV: Ultimate Limbo Challenge

The distance they have to limbo gets longer and longer. If they don't make it, the purple guys come in and blow their stinky breath down a tube at them xD

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

A SHORT(hand) POST! By Kip.

When looking to express humor in Japanese, the shorthand "wwww" is commonly used.
Whereas English speakers use LOL or ROFLCOPTER to express a variant of laughing, wwww is meant to be a shorter version of the Japanese word for expressing laughter, "warau".

One can also use capital Ws or extend the W-chain if something is very funny.

For example, take a look at this excerpt from Chatango:

THCTriton: WwWwWwWwWw.
THCTriton: that engrish pic was so funny

As you can see, Chatango also underlines hyperlinks any string of "www."

Happy laughing!

(Kip has an old .doc file on his computer of a dictionary of internet shorthand if anyone ever needs to see it...)

Monday, October 08, 2007

Geneon Long Gone: A Commentary by Kip

When I heard that the Anime licensing company Geneon Entertainment was concluding distribution of anime almost a month ago, I was more than surprised. Almost appalled. Geneon is hands down the best in the business. If you don't believe me a recent poll at AnimeNation offers some results in my favor. So why Geneon? Is it the fansubs? Or is the whole market of anime going away? Was there ever even a market to begin with?

I thought I'd follow the news for a while and see what would come of Geneon, but no important news has come up yet. Geneon still had some anime on the production line at the time of their closing. One such anime was the highly acclaimed Black Lagoon second season.

It may just be me, but seeing the Geneon logo at the start of any anime I watch is pretty comforting. The soft piece of music that accompanies it and the silence just before the drawing of the curtain just got you all excited. This was a quality sub, likely had a good set of actors in the dub, and the series were all diverse, not just the flavor of the month, shoot 'em up or magic kids running amuck over ninety episodes. And you had a choice. Pick the sub and you know all the terms, you weren't surprised at the occasional sama or san or senpai, "Golden Week" instead of "break", etc. Pick the dub, and some of these terms were more explained to the lay audience.

So maybe the problem's in the package... Geneon anime tend to be more expensive. At my shop they even seem to get more expensive as the series progresses. I'll admit, I wouldn't be upset if Geneon marketed some anime 'Download Only'. I subscribe to iTunes which has some anime titles in its library, but you can't just search "anime" and expect to get a whole scope of titles; though, the reason why I chose iTunes over other media download providers is gift cards.

With gift cards you can exchange money for safe credit. I don't need to use a credit card with a large amount to buy my music. If anime companies could act similarly by selling cards to anime content online, it also allows those fans without credit cards access to online content and for less of a price than packaged discs, and they don't even have to use iTunes. Of course, the opportunity cost you forgo in this situation is teh awesomeness that comes with the packaging and the physical DVD you can set on your shelf with your collection, in which case you save some titles 'DVD Only'.

While Geneon remains in limbo, I wish it good luck. I still fear that maybe there are only a few of us supporting the sales though. Some of you may see the ratings for anime on Adult Swim for example. It doesn't do well (save for like FLCL!) especially compared to the other parp cartoons it airs.

I just hope that the other companies can take a cue from Geneon, and look past this unfortunate closing. Listening to fans has always been one avenue. Kinda funny how that works. That's how the company raised it self up from its humble beginnings as Pioneer Entertainment.
And then I guess there's Odex which feeds off of the hatred of its anime fans...
(Those links are courtesy of the ADD blog, whose content may be a bit more adult.)

DarkMirage offers another commentary on this matter in his blog. Go have a look.

Japanese TV: Pan-kun's final episode

Pan-kun and his dog friend are awesome! They're both pretty amazing. -Pocky
After enjoying a trip with Ken Shimura, genius chimpanzee Pan-kun finishes up his “farewell to the outside world” trip by going with James to buy Shimura a special present — a picture frame. It sounds like a pretty simple task, but disaster strikes and they are forced to perform some rescue work [with lots of melodramatic fun]:
Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

Friday, October 05, 2007

The Pacific Triangle

The Devil's Sea or the Dragon Triangle are two of the common names for the length of water beginning at the southern end of Japan, and passing through several of the Izu islands.

It has been so named (like its Bermuda counterpart) as a result of the collection of mysterious disappearances that have occurred within this water space forming a shape like that of a triangle. This mysterious body of water first received recognition when it "stopped" two separate Mongolian attacks (AD 1264-81). In addition, this area was once a hotspot for spotting dragons!

An entire list of vessels that have disappeared in or over this area indicates that this is no mere body of water. Among the list is this infamous trip, involving a research team, sent aboard the infamous Kaiyo Maru No. 5 to record data and findings from their mission in "the triangle" to investigate underwater volcanic activity . The ship sunk, claiming to have been a result of an underwater volcanic disturbance, which has become a likely cause for some of the other disappearances in this area.

Several small Japanese fishing vessels have said to have disappeared in this area often between certain years --outliers on a normally "infrequent" disappearance curve. Planes have also disappeared in the airspace, and several times as ships and planes have passed through the area, they have disappeared off of RADAR tracking and even "lost time" claiming their clocks were set back a certain length of minutes to hours. One famous televised flight captured a crew flying over the area then losing all controls and electronics. The plane recovered shortly afterward, but the clock on the plane was set back exactly thirty minutes.

But wait, there's more! Let me know what you guys think of this blog post and I may write another post on this mysterious water space, and even mention some of the theories scientists have about the triangle and the tale of Urashima Taro.

Nissan Pivo 2 Concept Car

This thing is awesome! You get like a little R2D2 robot that pilots the car with you!!!! And it TALKS :D

Ahead of the 40th Tokyo Motor Show (October 26 to November 11), Nissan unveils its electric-powered Pivo 2 concept car. Designed for urban use, the Pivo 2 features a 360-degree revolving cabin, inherited from the first-generation Pivo, allowing the driver to always face forward while driving, even when parallel parking, and to access the unique front door from any direction. The three-seat car is equipped with safety systems such as Around View Monitor (AVM), Distance Control Assist System (DCAS) and also a Robotic Agent that uses facial monitoring technology to interact with the driver.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Japanese TV: Bike across the river!!

Lol so stupid but funny! XD I think the pusher person at the beginning messes some of them up.
Part 1:

Part 2:

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

And the eyes of god were apon thee...

Remember when I posted that link where you could move little Japanese men around who were supporting a giant mouse?

This is for you!

Now with mah internets back I can go about reporting some good stuff again. Who am I kidding, that was good!

By the way, this is a little sneak preview of the content that will be in the new PSP game, Suzumiya Haruhi no Yakusoku.

Japanese TV: Eat/Drink while skydiving?

Yes, only on Japanese TV. They test if you can eat ice cream or drink a soda while sky diving. Hard Gay makes an appearance! XD

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Hello Kitty USB Desk Fan

(Via TokyoMango)
Are you one of those people that sweats at your desk? Wish you were on a beach with palm trees, sailboats, and Hello Kitty in a bikini? This USB-powered fan features a palm tree-shaped plastic fan and Hello Kitty in a teeny weeny red polka dot bikini.

Product page (Japanese)

Japanese TV: Pull the Tablecloth!

They keep adding stuff on top of the table, slowly eliminating the contestants one by one! The ending is really weird. But funny! XD

Monday, October 01, 2007

2007 Fall Anime Trailers

Get a sneak peak of all the anime to come!

Part 3

Also, here is a list of each anime trailer!

Lots more cool stuff here!! Continue browsing...

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