December 22, 2014

The real reason Jeff Bezos did it

A year ago Jeff Bezos spent $250 million and acquired the Washington Post. A lot of people thought he was out of his mind. Some wondered whether he was going to be a sugar-daddy to the paper and allow it to run a deficit in perpetuity.

I think we now know the real reason. A few days ago a new app appeared on my Kindle: the Washington Post. I have been graciously granted 6 months of free usage, they say. (I haven't run the app and won't be doing so in future.) And I think it's a foregone conclusion that about five and a half months from now, I'll start getting nagged to pay to continue my subscription.

If you think about it, the Kindle is as good a platform as exists for a futuristic electronic newspaper, and there are millions of them out there now. It's really a perfect fit; all Bezos needed was a newspaper to sell on it. And as of a year ago, now he has one!

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Our Dreams have come true

Kids these days are so lucky!!

Someone has created a physical toy version of Car Wars, called "Anki DRIVE". (What was that about "side-mounted railguns"?) (Via)

UPDATE: This is really awesome: there are additional cars you can buy. Before you can drive one of them, you have to beat them in a race. They run autonomously and they know if they've won or lost. Once they've lost one time, then you can contact them and control them thereafter.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Weird World at 08:21 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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December 21, 2014

Chooser version 55

Added 60 from Amagi Brilliant Park, 56 from Madan no Ou to Vanadis, and 57 from Nanatsu no Taizai. Total number of images is now 4529.

I also made it so that you can see the NW, NE, and SE buttons when your mouse is over them.

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Madan no Ou to Vanadis -- the plundering

Madan no Ou to Vanadis was good for 56 candidates. I think it's time to do another update.



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Amagi Brilliant Park -- the plundering

I ended up with 61 candidates from Amagi Brilliant Park.



It takes quite a girl to take a selfie like that and make it work! (It takes quite a girl to even be willing to try!)

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December 20, 2014

Nanatsu no Taizai -- Diane fanservice

This is the most fan-servicey shot in the show:

This is probably the second:

By the way, I've just harvested 57 candidates for the top rotation from the first 11 episodes of the show.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Cheesecake at 11:47 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment
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December 19, 2014

Fairy Tail S2 ep 38 -- Hi Ho Sagittarius, and away!


I'm trying to find a word. An "anachronism" is a thing in the wrong time, like seeing a Roman legionary wearing a wrist watch. The word I want refers to a thing which doesn't belong in any time at all, like seeing a dragon flying over a battlefield full of main battle tanks.

Whatever that word is, Erza is it this episode. How the heck does she know what a cowboy looks like? As far as I can tell, there are no horses in the Fairy Tail world. I think I saw one, just one, early in the series but since then zip. Wagons don't get drawn by horses; they use giant pigs instead. No one rides horses; in fact, no one rides any animal. The only riding we've seen is on ships, trains, and wagons (drawn by giant pigs), and the occasional magically-powered car.


Well, I don't care; Erza the Cowgirl still looks pretty damned good.

UPDATE: There's an aspect of this story line I don't like: Yukino and Lucy are having the most trouble in their fights. Elfman defeated Taurus, Mirajane defeated Pisces, Gajeel and Lily defeated Gemini, Wendy defeated Aquarius, Kana defeated Scorpio, Levy defeated Capricorn, Gray defeated Cancer, Juvia defeated Aries, Erza defeated Sagittarius.

Which leaves Leo, Virgo, and Libra. (And Ophiuchus.) Leo has been dodging his fight with Natsu, and Lucy and Yukino, the actual celestial wizards, have been doing amazingly badly against Virgo and Libra respectively. Somehow it doesn't seem fair that celestial wizards should be so useless. But I guess it makes sense because neither of them can use their power (to summon spirits to fight for them). Everyone else's power is unaffected.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Anime at 07:48 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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I got my latest order from Robert's Anime Corner Store today, and they tossed in a handful of official "Robert's Anime Corner Store" chocolate dollars. It's good chocolate, too.

Oh, and it was shipped the day after I ordered, as always. Even though it's Christmas season and presumably they're very busy. (I hope they're busy; I've heard that this year's Christmas shopping season has been a disappointment for some places!)

UPDATE: I wonder if this is something like coffee mugs and T-shirts where there are businesses in the business of making custom ones with your very own logo or graphic on them?

Seems like it must be. How long before Cafepress starts offering them?

UPDATE: So what did I buy? For the last year, the mascot on my computer table has been Katsuragi from Senran Kagura, and I decided it was time for a change. More below the fold.


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December 18, 2014



Diane is definitely the most awesome thing in Nanatsu no Taizai.

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Well, this should be fun...

US Weather Bureau is predicting 2-5 inches of rain for here Saturday night. That should be fun. (Also 5-8 inches in the Coast range.)

Where that won't be fun is if the Willamette goes out of its banks. It won't affect us here, but the creek ought to get pretty lively!

UPDATE: I wonder if this will be as bad as the Chrismas Flood? Probably not, but it may come close.

UPDATE: I was only 10 when the Christmas Flood happened, but it's got special meaning to me. It was the second part of a 1-2 punch to hit the Northwest, coming just about a year after what we call the Columbus Day Storm.

About 1961, my parents bought a lot in SW Portland, moved a trailer house onto it, and began building their dream house. Now when a lot of people say "We're building a house" they mean they hired a construction company. That's not what we did. My dad actually designed the place and drew all the blueprints, and worked on it evenings and weekends and vacations. My grandfather, who was a carpenter, came up to help as much as he could, and friends of my dad would sometimes come over and help. My brother, who was 12-13 years old at the time, did a lot of work and me, 8-9, I did as much as I could. We had the foundation poured and the basement covered by the main floor, and managed to put up all the outer walls and got the roof over it, and covered the whole roof with plywood. But there weren't yet any internal partitions by October, 1962.

And then we got the storm of the century, and it blew the house down. I was in the bathroom when it happened so I didn't see it go. But shortly thereafter my folks began to worry that the trailer might roll over in the wind, and so we walked to our neighbor's house and asked them to put us up for the night.

We spent a week living at my uncle's house in NE Portland because his electricity didn't go out. It took us several months to tear everything apart and restack all the lumber, and then to put the walls and roof back up again.

We were a lot further along by a year later when the second punch of the 1-2 whammy happened. It was bad for the state, but it didn't actually affect us at all. (Our lot was on the edge of the Tryon Creek Valley, so the water just ran off and we never saw anything.

But I remember in 1964 people beginning to wonder if we'd get slammed again. (We didn't.) By then we were living in the house and had sold the trailer.

UPDATE: Oh, boy; they've updated the forecast:


That last is me.

And if those estimates are even close to accurate, every river in the western third of this state is going to flood.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in Daily Life at 12:34 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
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