Tuesday, July 31, 2007

New site addition

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to let you know that I've added a new feed to my RSS Headline News. Starting today, you'll see entries from wikiHow. I especially like today's HowTo - How to Host a LAN party!

Let's do it!!!


Monday, July 30, 2007

Anime list from 2003

(from the Invest in CDs? I Thought You Said DVDs! department)

Hi everyone,

When I moved into my new house, I had to pack up a lot of stuff that I had accumulated in 12 years of living in the same apartment. There wasn't time to deal with all of my stuff, so we just left it in the moving boxes in the new basement, thinking we'd deal with it shortly. Two years later, most of my stuff is still in these boxes - including my original webserver for Weasel-bot.com. (Frighteningly, it's a Japanese NEC PC-9821 running Win 95!)

I made the switch to a new webserver to save energy, and I still haven't migrated all of the old data over. (Frighteningly, the new server is a PlayStation 2 running Linux!) Most of the data is pretty useless anyway - the domain has always been more of a hobby than an ongoing concern - but I've restored one webpage that's really cool.

At one point, in 2003, I went thru all of my anime DVDs and came up with a master list. I still haven't turned on that computer - but it turns out that the internet Wayback Machine had archived the list.

I now present it to you, for your shock and amazement: Paul's Anime List

The sad thing? That's from 2003! It has none of the anime I've purchased on DVD since then.


Thursday, July 26, 2007

Queen Guitarist Brian May To Complete His Doctorate

(from the Killer Riffs, Killer Asteroids department)

Hi everyone,

Various news sources, including the Sydney Morning Herald, are indicating that Queen guitarist Brian May is going to complete his doctorate in Astrophysics, 30 years after discontinuing his studies to form the rock group Queen.

This is so cool on a number of levels - brainy rock people, doctorates at 60, astronomy - I don't know where to begin.

Congratulations, Brian!

(Also noted here at the BBC)


Sunday, July 22, 2007

A Visit To Kwik-E-Mart

(from the Is This Real Or A Movie? department)

Hi everyone,

Dana and I visited Seattle's "Kwik-E-Mart" today. In honor of the upcoming Simpsons movie, a few 7-11s were turned into the fictional Kwik-E-Marts of the TV show. We went to the one in Seattle.

All I can say is that it was awesome. The interior designs were especially amazing. I ended up buying a 6 pack of donuts (pink like the show!) and a Homer T-Shirt. The employees working there seemed farily enthusiastic about it, really. People were all over the store, taking photos. (It didn't hurt that it was the Bite of Seattle weekend either.)

Here's some photos!

And - yes - the donuts are tasty!


Friday, July 20, 2007

My Name Is... Possible Copyright Infringement?

(from the Lawsuits-R-Us department)

Hi everyone,

I've been surfing the FCC website lately, and stumbled across this page: Kidszone

In the left side of the webpage, you'll see the FCC's new mascot - Doraemon Broadcast.

Anyone else notice the similarities, or is it just me?


Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Latest Harry Potter already on the web?

(from the Web Hackorz are l33t! - not! department)

Hi everyone,

Looks like somebody has put photocopied pages of the new Harry Potter novel on the web. Jeez!

New Potter Book May Have Made Its Way To Web


Steinway's Double-Keyboard Piano

(from the You Need Four Hands department)

Hi everyone,

Saw this article on the NY Times website about a one-off dual keyboard Steinway Piano. Is this cool or what?
Let's Play Two: Singular Piano

What got me interested in the double Steinway was a review of Christopher Taylor's concert:
Christopher Taylor - Caramoor - Music - Review


Monday, July 16, 2007

Caffeine Jello shots!

(from the You got Peanut Butter in My Chocolate department)

The title says it all:


Friday, July 13, 2007

Sony 60gig PS3 - are they or aren't they?

(from the Left Hand vs. Right Hand department)

Hi everyone,

Interesting news in the blogosphere this morning. There's a fracas going on over at Sony about the recent price drops in the 60gig model of the PS3.

The battle started with the president of SCEE - that's Sony Europe - stating that the U.S. didn't really get a price cut. Instead, they got a bigger hard drive and a pack-in game for the same $599 price. The $499 price reduction on the 60gig model was, to paraphrase, a "fire sale" to get the model out of the warehouses, and would be out of stock by the end of July.

This came as a big surprise to SCEA (Sony America). They've countered the fire sale argument saying: "As we announced this week, SCEA’s product offering in North America consists of a 80GB PS3 available in August and a 60GB PS3 available now for $499. We will have ample supplies of both models to meet the needs of consumers for the foreseeable future."

So - who's right? Well - let's let the president of Sony Computer Entertainment, Kaz Hirai, weigh in:
"[We do not] have a 2 SKU strategy in the US, we learned very quickly customers respond better to having one SKU than two. We dropped the price on the 60GB model, as you know that model is no longer in production, once it's no longer on store shelves it will just be the $600 SKU."

Sounds like it's a little of both, then, really.


P.S. Don't forget - the 60gig model is one of the last PS3s with the PS2 EE chip in it.

It's here!

But - I'm not going to tell you what it is yet. More soon!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

It's OFFICIAL: New PSP coming!

This is hot from the Sony E3 keynote, courtesy of Joystiq:

Kaz: "We are introducing the world to the evolution of the PSP ... What I'm holding is the newest version of the PSP, which will be available in September. It's not too different, it still has UMD and the same screen, but once you have it in your hand, youll see the difference. It's 33% lighter, 19% slimmer, and the battery is much improved."

So - there you go. I'll post more as soon as I know more.

UPDATE: Yeah - there's more. Much, much more....

11:48AM PDT - "It can also output high quality video. You could hook it up to your Bravia HDTV, so everyone can only your PSP. You see, this is a trailer for Spider-Man 2, which is out on Blu-ray from Sony Home Entertainment. So now, I press the display button, and as you see it's now playing on the flat screen behind me."

11:49AM PDT - "You can control what you're seeing, I'll pause it, get rid of the menu, etc. If you want the video back on your PSP, push the display button again and it's back on your PSP. You can play games, videos, show photos, all of that on a tv screen or your PSP. With DLNA, you can also access the files on your PC at home via your PSP. This sparks the imagination, and encourages developers and players alike to think beyond the norm. As you can see it comes in piano black, but there are some additional colors that are coming to North America, which Jack will show off in a moment."

So - smaller unit, better battery, video out and custom colors. And - price is $199. Sounds like a real winner to me. The only question I have is the video out. I've seen some screenshots of the new unit, and I don't see a video out jack. I wonder if they're using the USB out - if so, I wonder if it will work with the original PSP. (I'm hoping it will, anyway.)

UPDATE 2: No pics yet, but the websites are reporting that the video out is via a new connector, not USB. So - no easy upgrade for the original PSPs. Check the video on T3.co.uk for more details.


How to be a psychic

(from the I can't believe you knew that! department)

Hi everyone,

Found this article on-line today. It's great! Now, who wants to try it first?



Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Wow - it's hot in Seattle right now!

Hi everyone,

Heat wave in Seattle today!!! According to KOMO TV, it got up to 89 (F) today. (It felt much hotter, though!)

Other highs in the area included (all temps F):

  • Vancouver, WA: 104
  • Portland, OR: 102
  • Forks: 93
  • Bremerton: 91
  • Port Angeles: 91

and the list just goes on and on.

It gets worse tomorrow in Seattle - it's supposed to get into the mid 90's. (According to KOMO, the high will be 96.)

I'll keep you posted.


Monday, July 9, 2007

Okay - one more photo

Hi everyone,

Okay - since these photos came out so well, I'm going to post one more.

This is from the trip back to West Seattle, just as the sun was going down:


Sunday, July 8, 2007

A moment in a parking lot in West Seattle, 8-Jul-07

(from the Candid Camera department)

Hi everyone,

I just had to share this photo with you. That's my wife Dana - kinda waiting for me to take the photo so we can board the water taxi.

"What water taxi?", I hear you ask.

Well, there's a water taxi that runs between downtown Seattle, and West Seattle. You can find more information out about it here: http://transit.metrokc.gov/tops/oto/water_taxi.html

By the way - check out the weather in the above photo. Boy - it was gorgeous in Seattle today! (And - no - that's not our Mercedes.)

UPDATE: A few people, upon viewing the original photo, have pointed out that Dana appears to be, shall we say, "grumpy". She really wasn't, but even if she were, a tasty ice cream bar on a pleasant boat ride soon fixed that.

Also - enjoying a gorgeous view like this could very well have fixed the grumpies too.


787 Dreamliner launch today - 7-8-07

(From the Fly The Friendly Skies department)

Hi everyone,

Dana and I went to the launch of the 787 Dreamliner today. Due to the incredibly large turnout, we actually went to a remote satellite event at the (huge) Qwest Field stadium. They had live speeches from Washington State governor Christine Gregoire and ex-Boeing president Frank Shrontz. Then, we went live to Everett to the main ceremony, hosted by Tom Brokaw. There were a number of speeches from around the world, then, finally, the unveiling of the plane.

Here's a couple of photos I took at the event.

We sat here:

Brokaw in the hizzouse!:


Ruby Gloom rules!

(from the Gothic Hello Kitty department)

Hi everyone,

While I was in Victoria BC at the first of the month (July), I caught the coolest kids show on yTV (Canadian kids TV channel).

It's kind of a weird cross between Hello Kitty and Chas Addams* - and it's called Ruby Gloom.

The animation is by the northern powerhouse studio Nelvana. No DVDs available yet - and it skews a little to the young side - but the artwork rules!

More info - and sample episodes - here:



* You know, the guy who wrote the comic strip the Addams Family TV was based on...

Another cool feature! RSS News Headlines via RSS

(from the Department of Redundancy Department)

Hi everyone,

One of the reasons I created my blog is in the right hand column: The RSS News Headlines. As I read thru my RSS feeds using Google Reader, I can highlight interesting stories and add them to my blog page. (And I read a lot of RSS feeds! So - having me filter them for you is a good thing.)

However - poking around the RSS output of my blog, it turns out that the RSS News Headlines aren't added to my main RSS feed. But - they're available separately. You'll want to subscribe to this:



Saturday, July 7, 2007

Review: The Melancholy Of Haruhi Suzumiya - Vol. 1 (Deluxe Edition)

Hi everyone,

I've started a new anime series: "The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya". I just got Volume 1 (Deluxe Edition) from Amazon.com and finished watching it. So far, this is shaping up to be one of my favorites this year.

The DVD is 16:9 anamorphic widescreen with English and Japanese audio. English subtitles are available - either for full dialog or for signs only. Bonus features include a series of promotional shorts prepared for the U.S. launch of the series that were available on the U.S. website - these are hilarious!

The show concerns itself with a young student who starts a new school. He meets a beautiful, headstrong girl named Haruhi...

...okay - nodding off yet?

Yeah - I know you've heard this plot outline many times before in Anime - but this is where it gets weird. Haruhi is only interested in UFOs, espers, and time traveling. She doesn't have patience for anything else - barely acknowledging the existence of the new student. Haruhi instead puts all of her energy into forming a club called the SOS Brigade, which she hopes will help her find the unknown. The club soon attracts a number of school stereotypes - bookworm, ditzy girl, hunky guy, etc. - who, along with the new student, become unwilling new members.

Or are they really that unwilling? As the show goes on, the new student finds out that all is not it appears to be. And that, quite possibly, Haruhi herself can unmake reality.

The show was originally aired in a scrambled order. There are only 7 episodes of the main plot derived from the original novel - the rest of the episodes are from subsequent works. By scrambling the order, the mystery of the show is preserved.

Or so it might be, if Bandai had decided to release them in that order. With the exception of the first episode on the disc - which occurs much later in the series - the rest of the episodes are in sequential order. This is actually mildly disappointing - the original scrambled order does sound like a better way to view the show. Luckily, starting with Volume 2, the Deluxe Editions will include a second disc that preserves the scrambled order as originally aired in Japan.

A quick note about the Deluxe Edition for Volume 1. This is one of the most gorgeous boxes I've ever seen. It has magnetic latches, and opens up like a jewelry box, with doors and trays. There are a slew of bonus items, including a soundtrack CD, sticker and a Haruhi hair ribbon. Very cool, and well worth the extra bucks.

So - in conclusion - the Melancholy Of Haruhi Suzumiya Vol. 1 Deluxe Edition is a must buy. It does start out a little bit like other harem-type animes set in a school, but quickly becomes something else. The bonus features are good, and the packaging is superb. I can hardly wait for Volume 2.


Added a cool feature!

Oooh - this is cool!

Okay - I use Google Reader to keep up with all of my RSS feeds. It turns out I can mark RSS posts and display them here on my blog. Look to the right - you'll see what I mean. :)


And, here it is again....for the first time!

Hi everyone,

I finally decided to start my own blog. I know, I know, I'm a bit late to the bandwagon. Whatever. :)

So - what is this blog about? Well - a number of things. Mostly music, anime, video games, computers - and oh so much more.

Oh - you meant the blog title? "The Ideal Copy" is the title of an album by Wire. Hopefully, they won't be too upset that I decided to call my blog that.

What does it mean? Well, according to my fuzzy memory - the quote from Wire is "The Ideal Copy is a copy that creates itself" - something like DNA. I'm not sure what it means to me yet - I'll get back to you on that.

So - anyway - this is my blog. Welcome!