Eternal Temporality

Always dies, sometimes lives

bodacious indeeed

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2012/06/28

as mouretsu pirates(“bodacious space pirates”) gets ready to air its 26th and final episode, i thought i’d go and check out exactly what light novels were covered in the anime itself. the light novels, titled “miniskirt pirates”, are written by yuuichi sasamoto, some drop-out from a school of economics(juts kidding mr. sasamoto, you’re awesome!). after its first volume was released in october 2008, there have been a total of eight volumes written. so how far does the anime go?

the answer is: the anime only covers books one through three! only the initial story arc, the ghost ship story arc, and the hakuoh academy being pirates and dressing up in weird costumes story arc are actually taken from the light novels. surprisingly enough, the entire dinghy arc and the pirate hunting arc are anime-original story arcs. even more surprising is the fact that the vast majority of characters from the hakuoh academy were never even given names and backgrounds in the light novels. apparently there were more of them in the novels, but the anime gave a whole bunch names, settings, backgrounds, and everything.

the anime itself was originally announced back in 2010, when only three novels had been released. the idea was that episodes 1 through 19 would cover the first three light novels, while the remaining seven episodes would contain an original plot specific to the show. the anime was planned to be aired in the second half of 2011, but it was pushed back until this spring – so apparently the entire series had been completed before the first episode ever aired! weird, that never happens. they supposedly fooled around – er, experimented – with a bunch of stuff since they had so much time on their hands.

i’m extremely impressed with the amount of awesome the anime has injected into the story. i can’t imagine the story itself being any different(namingly, none of the hakuoh academy characters being important). while this final story arc seems quite interesting, though, kane’s twin brother / current luca being a fake / blaster ririka doing stuff / holy shit that battleship can zig zag all seem rather ridiculous. the dinghy arc, however, was actually amazing, so i guess it’s okay.

if someone does intend to create a second season, there is certainly no shortage of official material for it. and with the established extra material that the anime has, it could indeed be amazing. but will it be able to match the most hype anime opening song i’ve heard in years?

for now, anyway, i am eagerly awaiting the final episode, which will mark the end of my spring anime season watching. since nothing seems interesting during the summer(except maybe carnival/zero), maybe i’ll go back and watch old robot shows. i’m thinking of watching one or more of these: dunbine, l-gaim, xabungle, patlabor, macross, da garn. i’ll have to decide soon, i guess!

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programman

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2012/06/27

somebody on reddit the other day posted a link to riot games’ presentation at a hadoop summit called “Big Data at Riot Games“. as a fan of both data warehousing and league of legends, it’s a pretty neat read as to how they solved a lot of their problems handling the massively large amounts of information they handle on a daily basis. warning: contains a lot of technical language regarding database management, mysql, etc. if you have no idea what i just said then just skip to the shen use case portion for some cool graphs and shit.

anyway, it gave me a chance to brush up on some more advanced database stuff that i didn’t really know. like, what’s a dimension table.

i spent a large portion of yesterday fooling around with a text editor called Sublime Text. it is really pretty amazing, and i haven’t even installed any kind of plugins or packages yet. the multiple text selection is so cool to mess around with. there are tons of neat commands geared towards coding, too. just don’t expect it to do a find+replace on a file with two million lines, as the “find” portion will first try to select every single instance, and… yeah. but anyway, if you haven’t ever heard of it, do yourself a favor and go check it out. its registration is $60, which i find a bit steep for a text editor, but its trial version has no time limit attached and just gives you a popup asking if you want to register every now and then.

since i spend most of my time coding in c#, it’s good to know that you can actually create custom “build systems” from the text editor itself. while some of what i do is creating interfaces(for which visual studio is a practical necessity), this article provides a few good tips and resources for c# programmers looking to use this text editor, including a way to compile your stuff.

i’ve been drawing a little bit lately, but i barely know how to use paint tool sai. the extent of my knowledge is how to sketch something, how to basically vector-ify it, and how to put in basic colors using layers. the tool has so much more to it though, and i wish i knew what everything did and how to use it effectively.

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mahjong update

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2012/06/26

okay, so i created pages for the rinshan kaihou and the nagashi mangan “hands”. there’s some cool info on wikipedia i didn’t know before, so go check them out!

this theme doesn’t have drop-down menus, unfortunately, so i’m looking to rearrange the top-level info pages somehow. still thinking about how to do that, so stay tuned.

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dota 2 and other stuff

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2012/06/26

even though i don’t actually play dota 2, i do like to keep tabs on its development blog as it progresses through its beta phase. as a long-time league of legends player, the kind of things valve is doing for this game are pretty darn cool. their client, while it still needs some work, impressed me tons more than lol’s old adobe air-based client. needless to say, replays, match history, and even neat statistics such as a rating for certain characters all place it above riot’s clunky mess of programming code. they recently opened up a steam workshop for hero accessories and whatnot, which is a pretty interesting move. some people are actually using the opportunity to update re-skin heroes entirely, too. setting aside the coolness factor of the community-created content that they’re accepting into the game, which is an amazing cash + community combination attack, their new update introduces the equivalent of lol’s ranked teams, as well as a new and rather thought-provoking system where you pay to watch official tournament games inside the client. the price would approximately reflect the popularity and “big-ness” of the tournament.

they say they’re going to give it a trial run to see how it does, which seems like the smart move to make, but we have to remember that this game isn’t even out of beta stages yet. valve is really going balls-out on this game. it’s a shame i personally think lol is just plain more fun, and don’t want to take the time to learn yet another hundred characters, or else i’d probably be playing it.

in other news, bandai is releasing a ballute pack that can be equipped on any master grade model from zeta gundam(that used the system). essentially what this means is that i can drop my gunpla into earth from my personally geosynchronous satellite now. man, i’ve been waiting to be able to do that for ages.

in other other news, jesus christ it’s a gyan on a horse get in the car kids

oh… you can probably expect a mahjong update incoming. i’ll be translating a few more wikipedia articles on specific hands, so please wait warmly!

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i was only dead temporarily

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2012/06/25

and you thought i wasn’t being creative when i picked the name for this blog. it is eternal, but only temporarily.

i changed the theme again since i didn’t my sweet-ass custom theme. the “koi” look just wasn’t doing it for me. i think this theme is suitably clutter-free, meaning i can clutter it up easily(sidebar banners are still around). i may end up changing the color of the header, though.

anyway i was just thinking that from now on, if i want to write something, i’ll just write it here, whatever the topic may be. i’m still studying japanese and have loads of crazy knowledge and random trivia under my belt at the moment, so don’t lose hope, o studious scholars!

now that that’s out of the way, let’s talk about something awesome. and by awesome, i’m referring to the newly-announced sd gundam g generation overworld. as a raging, die-hard gundam fan, there is really no need to point out the fact that i am totally hyped for this game. for one thing, i only own three games for my psp(in fact, it hasn’t even been a year since i bought the thing). but it’s more because it’s promising the most stuff ever packed into a g generation game. ever. and they proved it already, too! we haven’t seen the g-unit story from the gundam w world since way back when g generation f was the the thing to play. the gundam gp00 is returning from the great abyss. even gundam pixie is making an appearance – that’s right, that silly lightweight gundam from an old snes game called cross dimension 0079 that no one remembers.

that said, it is a bit disappointing that it’s psp-only. i would have loved a version on ps2/ps3, or even for the wii again, with wii emulation being what it is in this day and age. i have a psp, of course, but there’s something about the big screen granted to console games that really makes me get into the game and invest significant amounts of time in it. i’m feeling the same way with super robot wars z2 right now; z seemed a lot “bigger”, and that’s probably because all the maps were 3D and there were full-on portraits for all the characters during dialogue. the character portrait thing really does bug me, because the entire portrait of a character being shown makes it feel like it’s an actual character being shown rather than a little panel with a face in it. i love z2 to death – no contest there – but overall, i’m still a bit disappointed at banpresto’s choice to make the z2 games psp-only. but it’s okay, since nothing will take from me the enjoyment of watching code geass characters next to macross frontier characters next to gurren lagann characters, all fighting for a common justice.

in any case, the series list really is the biggest we’ve ever had in a g generation game. the famitsu article detailing the game’s announcement makes a point of including two as-of-yet unannounced series in it. the note next to them says “planned to be announced soon”, but it’s been a few days already, and there hasn’t been any word(to my knowledge). i’ve already been speculating on what they could be. most notably, bonds of the battlefield is strangely absent from the series list. while the zaku i sniper was featured in unicorn, other suits such as the gm striker and gp-02 mlrs type might be missing from this game should bonds not make it in. though i have a hard time believing much would be taken out of this game compared to world, since it seems like basically the same game with a seishin system and an additional storyline. if game companies thought the way i did, then they would have added levels and units as dlc for world. (not at the expense of anything actually in world, of course. it’s just that gundam unicorn was only up to episode 3 and gundam age wasn’t even a thing at the time) i don’t know how effective the wii is at dlc distribution, though. :)

my other guesses as to these “mystery series” include gundam evolve, gundam katana, and even gather beat(hey, it’s possible – and who doesn’t want to see the two customizations of the ez-8 back in g generation?). a more likely option than a one-off series of cg mobile suits, a clusterfuck of whatever the hell the author wants to put in, or a couple of old wonderswan games no one remembers, however, is extreme vs., for that extreeeemeeeeeee gundam, bro – especially given the way bandai seems to love that thing.

i am a little worried about the game feeling stale after having played so much of world. on the other hand, my playthrough of world consisted of me solely using generic pilots named after my friends and me, so i’ll probably be concentrating on the g generation original characters while i build up teams of characters and suits from the various series included. the generic pilot playthrough shtick was interesting at first, but it got a little boring after a while, especially when i went to dark world and realized i had no suits above level 6 because i’d been using the same five pilots the entire game, basically as test pilots for new units. derp. my experience with world over the past week or so has just been grinding dark world stage a-2(and occasionally a-3) to try and get that 100% completion on my unit collection. and let me tell you, once you get to around 95% is when the real tough part starts.

whatever happens, you better believe i’m excited for this. i’ll need to finish world and saisei-hen before it comes out this september. which reminds me, original generations 2 is also set for a release this winter… it’s shaping up to be a great season for video games, it seems.

though i’ll probably just succumb to the irresistible allure of phantasy star online 2. oh well whatever

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Zokugo 05 – Ways to Refer to People

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2011/05/29

For today’s zokugo post, we’re going to look at casual ways to refer to people in the 2nd or 3rd person. While it isn’t really “zokugo”, per se, these words are extremely important for understanding and participating in casual conversation in Japanese.

Second Person – Referring to “You”

The second person, which is the one you don’t really go over in high school English classes, refers to “you”, rather than “I” or “him”. There are many ways to do this in Japanese – however, as you probably know, people don’t use them often! Whatever the reason may be, such as intimacy or just outright being vulgar, Japanese people prefer to leave this kind of word out of the sentence altogether, substituting with the person’s name or そちら・そっち whenever possible. Even so, in close-quarters situations, these words will come in handy; just use them sparingly!

お前

Only used by guys(it’s seen as vulgar when used by ladies), this version of “you” can generally be used one of two ways. First off, we have the joking around way with casual friends. It’s usually intonated starting high and ending low when used like this:

お前、以外によくやったな!こんなこと、したことあるよな?
Heh, you did that pretty well! You’ve actually done this sort of thing before, haven’t you? (come on, tell me!)

The second reason to use this is to express frustration at someone(and not show them any kindness, really). Whether it be police chasing after a petty thief or a couple of friends getting into an argument, it definitely conveys a sense of hostility. The intonation, unlike above, is usually low to high here:

おい、お前!彼女はせっかくあんなことをしてあげたのに、その態度は何だ!?
Hey, you! What the hell is up with that attitude, after that girl went through all that to do that for you!?

I never hear this being used by girls, so just keep that in mind. I do, however, hear it being used towards girls, with both connotations listed above.

あんた

Basically the equivalent of お前, except it’s used by girls sometimes. Also, you really can’t “joke arond” with あんた, and it really is pretty rude.

私のこと「あんた」って呼ばないで!私はあなたの母親なんだから。
Don’t be “hey, you”-ing me like that; I’m your mother!

貴様(きさま)

Essentially like お前; it can be used jokingly – only among very close male friends – or, usually, to express complete hostility towards the person.

小さな赤ちゃんを殴るなんて、貴様、それでも人間か!?
What kind of person are you, hitting a small baby like that!?

Insightful readers will see these kanji, though, and wonder why it’s so disrespectful. In truth, 貴様(‘your honorable self’) used to be a term to refer to your superiors. I would assume it took on a sarcastic connotation over the years, and ended up like this.

てめえ

Don’t use this, it’s probably the worst one here. It can’t really be used jokingly.

てめえはこの話しに関係ねえんだから、引っ込んでろよ。
This is none of your f***in’ business, a*****e, so get the hell out of here.

Oddly enough, てめえ can be used to refer to yourself, too, but I don’t hear that often at all. (Similar to 己(おのれ), which I won’t go over here)

Third Person – Referring to “That Guy”

The third person, usually stricken in Japanese in favor of the person’s actual name nonetheless has important uses and come up quite frequently in casual conversation.

あいつ

“That guy”. Compare to お前 – it can be used both to display affection or to display contempt.

あいつとは小学校時代からの友達さ。いいやつなんだ。
Me and him’ve been pretty tight since grade school. He’s a good guy.

I don’t really hear this being used to refer to girls, but I do hear girls use it; most of the time in anger.

あいつなんか死ねばいいのに。
I wish he would just die already.

こいつ

“This guy”, or, when not referring to a person, just “this thing” or “this stuff”. The connotations of こいつ are difficult to understand unless you’ve heard it used many times. A lot of times in anime and stuff, the character will just utter the word こいつ angrily to show their contempt towards someone they’re facing or talking to(kind of like この).

こいつは遊ぶのが好きで、仕事をしたがらない困った人間だぜ。
This guy here goofs off so much and doesn’t do his job; what an excuse for a person.

Again, it can also be used to refer to objects, many times when complimenting it.

こいつはうまいコーヒーだ。どんな豆を使っているんだろうか。
This here is some pretty great coffee. I wonder what kind of beans they use.

野郎(やろう)

While the above two words were “ko-so-a-do” words, this one isn’t. From the kanji for “field man” we get a rather vulgar way to refer to a person. Usually it’s preceded by この or あの, depending on their proximity.

あの野郎、俺をなめやがって。そう簡単にだまされないぞ。
That idiot’s making fun of me. Well, I won’t be fooled that easily.

やつ

Like the above, another rather vulgar way to refer to a person. However, it can actually be used to refer to an object(like こいつ), to refer to something you don’t know the name of, or just a way to say “he” or “she”.

お前も変なやつだな。俺を指示どおりなぜやらないんだ。
You’re one weird guy. Why can’t you just do it like I tell you to?

この雑誌、先週買ったやつと同じよ。あんた、ダブって買ったの?
This is the same magazine you picked up last week. What did you go and do, buy two of the same thing?

(Readers will notice both あんた and a word from last week, ダブる, being used here)

俺、太りすぎだから、食餌療法というやつをやることになった。
I’ve been putting on some weight lately, so they put me on one of those medical diet program things.

Closing Notes

This was originally going to include a whole bunch of other kinds of “names” to call people, but just the pronouns were making the post a little long. Perhaps another time.

Big thanks goes out to Beyond Polite Japanese: A Dictionary of Japanese Slang and Colloquialisms, by Akihiko Yonekawa. The idea to do a post on this, as well as many of the example sentences, came from this book. For someone studying colloquial Japanese, it’s a great reference, so you should go buy it! Other example sentences came from SpaceAlc.

Hope you liked the post; see you with some more zokugo next Sunday! For those of you US readers, enjoy your Memorial Day weekend.

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Adverbs 03 – Doubtlessly Helpful Words

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2011/05/28

Today we’re going to look over some ways to express the feeling of “definitely” doing something or “certainly” being a certain way, and look into some of the more subtle nuances of the words and the different structures they can have.

必ず(かならず)

First off we have かならず, to mean “definitely”, such as in the sentence:

どんなことがあっても、必ず行きます。
No matter what happens, I’m definitely going.

As an adverb, all you have to do is plop it before a verb and you’ve got yourself a perfect sentence! However, important to note is the fact that you can only use かならず with positive verbs – in other words, you can’t use the word to say you’re definitely not going to do something. That role is left to…

絶対(ぜったい)(に)

As with かならず, all you do is stick 絶対に in front of a verb to mean “definitely”:

あの人は絶対に行かないよ。
That person is definitely not going.

As you can see, 絶対に can be used with a negative verb as well as normally with a positive verb, such as in the phrase 絶対に勝つ(I’ll definitely win).

Both 必ず and 絶対 are similar to the word きっと, but きっと carries slightly less certainty with it. 必ず is also used in the grammatical expression 必ずしも, but that’s another story.

全く(まったく)

You may have heard the word まったく muttered under the breath of a character you’ve seen on TV, and they usually mean it in the “geez…” sense. However, it does work as a legitimate adverb to mean “completely” or “totally”:

全く同感だ。
My thoughts exactly. / I precisely and completely think and feel the same way as you do.

It can be used either with positive or negative verbs:

全くわからないね。
I don’t really understand at all. / I am in a complete state of not understanding so and so.

Basically, you’re emphasizing that not only is something “very” X, but it is “completely” X.

もちろん

This word means “of course”, of course! It’s slightly different than the above in that it also implies a certain level of obviousness, or something that is basic and generally known to all in the conversation.

僕はもちろん大賛成だ。
I’m obviously all for it. / I am in great agreement with this thing [someone] has stated, of course.

If you have trouble remembering where to put it in the sentence, just keep in mind that this is an adverb, like all the other words so far: just place it before the verb or predicate, and you’re good.

確かに(たしかに)

確かに is a bit of an oddball in terms of usage. It generally means “definitely” or “without a doubt”, but in English it translates better to “of course [X]… (but…)” If that confuses you, let’s look at some examples.

確かに、あの町に夢中になる人って多い。
A lot of people are certainly fascinated by that city.

The normal usage is a bit hard to “get” out of context. Whoever is saying this is essentially agreeing with something else said – such as “this city has been on the news more often lately”, which leads this person to say “yeah, a lot of people seem fascinated by it”. A good English equivalent, in this case, would be “indeed”.

確かに、夢は現実と想像の断片がしばしば混じり合う。
Indeed, dreams themselves often combine bits of both reality and imagination.

Again, this isn’t something you would just say right off the bat – the speaker has been obviously been talking about dreams and how they relate to the real world, and then follows up with this kind of sentence.

The most important thing to remember about 確かに is that it’s a kind of “follow-up” word, and using it to start your first sentence in a conversation wouldn’t make any sense. It’s almost like an agreement, but not really, and it can get a bit confusing.

確かに、この「確かに」の表現は少し説明しにくいですね。
This “certainly” expression is indeed difficult to explain.

There’s one more use of the adverb, but it’s not as important:

確かに受け取りました。
I have certainly received it. / Without a doubt, I have received it.

This last sentence seems more like a grammar form than anything else: it’s just a weird way to use たしかに. When you want to confirm that something has been done – and it’s usually you having gotten something, or come into possession of it – you can use a sentence like this. This is very polite, though, and really doesn’t make sense in casual conversation.

Closing Notes

For those of you who know a bit more of the language, you may have noticed that a few other seemingly-obvious additions are missing, such as 全然 and おそらく. These words don’t technically fall under this category, but will be covered at a later date(probably). Until then, remember how to use these five words!

My examples all came from goo辞書 and スペースアルク. The initial idea for getting adverbs of one type together and explaining them as a group came from a document called よく使う副詞の機能別一覧, a document floating around on the Web.

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NJK 08 – Bears, Deer, and Arrogant People, Oh My!

Posted by Darkslime Z on 2011/05/26

You’ll have to forgive my absolutely horrible naming scheme.

Today’s kanji are a few nouns, used for quite common words that you should definitely already know by now.

訓読み・おれ
We start off the day with yet another way to refer to youself – yes, another first-person pronoun. This time, it’s the one used mostly by young guys around friends. Not so much around superiors, as it is extremely casual and implies a level of closeness between the people talking.That said, you’ll hear it all the time in anime and video games. You probably already have, in fact. The kanji is a little weird looking, but it shouldn’t be hard to remember, especially if you read a lot.
14/196
訓読み・くま
It means “bear”!
15/196
鹿 訓読み・しか
It’s a deer!
16/196

Vocabulary

  • 馬鹿(ばか) – yes, it’s the kanji for “baka”, or “stupid”, “idiot”, “fool”, etc. The kanji were made up after the fact solely to have the same sound, so the “horse deer” thing really holds no meaning.

Yes, that was the only vocabulary word, besides remembering the words おれ、くま、しか. Which you probably already have. So learn the kanji already!

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