April 30, 2013

[Drama CD] Counting sheep... and that's all you do

Having trouble sleeping? Just love to count sheep? Want to learn how to count to 400 sheep in Japanese? Want to listen to your favourite seiyuu count up to 200 sheep? Want to hear them get annoyed/sleepy while counting up to 200 sheep?
Well my friends this series of CDs 羊でおやすみシリーズ "Hitsuji de oyasumi series" is just the perfect thing for you!
You can download them here.
Info about the CD series found here (in Jap).
Have fun counting sheep with your favourite seiyuu!

Funny Windows Phone TV ad that targets Android and Apple fans

windows phone ad
The new Windows Phone TV ad that will start showing today, while it does make fun of Android users alongside iPhone users, is a pretty funny one.

The ad’s story takes place at a wedding where people start fighting over what phone each one of them is using (and most of us will probably have to admit having done so more than once). You might even hear some of the cliché lines some of us use during said fights.

A couple of waiters are shown filming the fight using Nokia Lumia 920 and stating the obvious, that users of the two platforms like fighting, (it’s part of the fun, isn’t it?). You can watch the ad below:

[Manga] Initial Impressions: Kagerou Days

Kagerou DaysSo I started reading a manga called Kagerou Days. The manga is relatively new and is currently in progress with only 8 chapters released so far.

Kagerou Days is definitely a shounen manga with it's sci-fi, slice-of-life, romantic comedy featuring a NEET named Shintaro Kisaragi encountering a cheeky cyber girl, Ene. Ene gets up to all sorts of mischief which makes Shintaro's life hell.

I just finished the first chapter, and I am already into the manga. It is excellently written and illustrated and the characters are appropriately portrayed with the story.

I am looking forward to the adventures and comedic moments of the duo's lives.

Initial Impressions: 8/10

April 29, 2013

Dev Diary: G+ Anime Blog

If you follow the Anime community on Google+, you may have noted the recent release of an official website by the Moderator team.

Well, as part of the development team that brought about the G+ Anime website, I've been quite busy lately working on the next update.

What's next? Well, for one thing, there will be a new section called "Blogs". This section is dedicated to anime bloggers that would like to post stuff related to anime on the G+ Anime website.

Right now, I'm in the process of configuring a custom theme for WordPress (the system we are using for blogs) and it's quite a challenge. There are a lot of files that require adjustment and also most of them are mainly in PHP (which I'm not that familiar with).

We hope o get the update released by the next Weekend Event. If not, then it would be the next one after that!

GACKT needs your help!

GACKT THE BEST OF THE BEST Vol. 1 page on gackt.com is asking for our help!
GACKT wants to know which song fits different situations the best. Songs that rank highly may appear on the Best Album that is currently being recorded.

The form is all in Japanese, and each box is translated as follows:

1. A song to listen to when driving
2. A song to listen to when you have just broken up with your partner
3. A song to listen to when facing a new challenge
4. A song to always sing at karaoke
5. A song to listen to when you have just started dating
6. A song to listen to when you fall asleep
7. A song to listen to when feeling down and sad
8. A song to listen to when you want to be energetic
9. A song to listen to when you're feeling happy
10. A song to listen to together with your family
11. A song to listen to when you're tired
12. A song to listen to when you're stuck in a bad situation
13. A song to listen to when feeling lonely
14. A song that is difficult to sing
15. A song to listen to together with your lover

The form is HERE!

The first box is your name (nickname is okay)
The second box is your DEARS membership number (if you aren't a member it is okay to leave this blank)
And then each song selection has two boxes - the smaller box is for the song title and the bigger box is for your reason.
The only mandatory box is your name, so you can complete the form without any reasons and leave spaces blank, if you want.

Deadline is 30 April 2013, 12pm (Japan time)
My dilemma: 15!! Only 15 songs!!?

Source - GACKT Official site

Daily Nyaa: Art of Nyaa

Anime is an art.

April 28, 2013

Pumpkin's Palette: Kaji Yuuki

梶 裕貴 (Kaji Yuuki) is one of my favourite male seiyuus. He has voiced characters such as Haruyuki (the fat guy from Accel World), Ouma Shu from Guilty Crown, Yokodera from HentaiNeko (currently airing), Totsuka Tatara from K, Alibaba from Magi, Eren from Shingeki no Kyojin (currently airing) and Satoru from Shin Sekai Yori, just to name a few. 
I absolutely love his voice and the songs he sings!
I think overall this took me slightly less than 4 hours. Pretty happy with this work.
I struggled so much with his right hand. 
The WIP version.

Rumor: Android 4.3 Jelly Bean is next, not Key Lime Pie

Android 4.3
We are almost due for the next version of Android, which is typically announced annually at Google I/O. According to Android Police founder Artem Russakovskii, the next version will be 4.3 Jelly Bean, and not 5.0 Key Lime Pie as previously expected. There are several reasons leading to this conclusion, the first of which involves server logs.
Android 4.3
Artem discovered multiple instances of the Nexus 7, and Nexus 4 running Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. Making sure the logs were not faked, he traced the IP addresses. Where did they end up? To no surprise, Google, and two different IP ranges related to Google employees.

Digging deeper, the Chromium code site has received several comments in the past couple days from a developer by the username aruslan, revealing JWR23B as a build number. This is the same build number found in Android Police’s server logs.

[via Android Authority]

April 27, 2013

GAC: G+ Anime Website Reveal

Check out this latest update of the Google+ Anime Community! The community finally has it's own website to accommodate the ever changing community.

Feel free to check it out! www.gplusanime.com

[via Google+ Anime Community]

KyoAni announces new swimming anime 'Free!' to air in July 2013

My friends, today is an excellent day. Not only was the preview for Ren's song released (it's so tasty), but KyoAni just made (one of) my dreams come true!
Yes, that's right, remember that sexy PV about four young pretty boys taking their shirts off and showing off their hot bods participating in the school swimming team? KyoAni just announced that it is officially an anime and it will be airing in July 2013! The anime is called Free! It is based on Kouji Ouji's High Speed!, an honorable mention recipient in the 2nd Kyoto Animation Award in 2011. Hiroko Utsumi of Animation DO is directing the anime, and Masahiro Yokotani is supervising the scripts. Futoshi Nishiya is designing the characters, and Tatsuya Katou is composing the music.

The main cast is as follows:
Shimazaki Nobunaga as Nanase Haruka,
Suzuki Tatsuhisa as Tachibana Makoto, Haruka’s childhood friend,
Yonaga Tsubasa as Hazuki Nagisa, the freshman,
Hirakawa Daisuke as Ryugazaki Rei,
Miyano Mamoru as Matsuoka Rin the rival!

Watch the promo video as well!
Edit: Offical website here.

April 26, 2013

[Lyrics] THANK YOU - Miyano Mamoru English translated lyrics

When I first heard this song Thank you, the second song from Mamo's latest single Kanon, I thought "wow the chorus sounds like Rebecca Black's Friday", but then upon second hearing I fell in love with this song because the lyrics are so beautiful. I'll try to translate the lyrics below. The kanji lyrics are adapted from here. You can listen to the song here.

THANK YOU by Miyano Mamoru (宮野真守) English translation

Although we're so close together,
There's things which I haven't told you about,
"Just tell me how to get straightforward".

“I found my soul a best friend”.
When you place your hand on my chest,
Your face is the first thing that floats to my mind.
“Well just you and you and you”.
But it feels awkward,
Because there's still words I haven't spoken to you.

Again and again thank you.
I say these words to you, the one who found me,
"I'm glad I met you".
If I can say these words through a song, thank you.
For being able to spend each day laughing with you, my dear,
I say thank you.

Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, now and forever.
Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, thanks*(1), I thank you.

This isn't just a mere (good) matter,
But an overwhelming feeling of love.
Because I have met you,
So I do not feel discouraged anymore.

“I found my soul a best friend”
In this manner I'll honestly convey these feelings to you.
“Well just you and you and you”
I'm still a little embarrassed,
But I'll give it my best (shot) today.

Again and again thank you.
I say these words to you, the one who found me,
"I'm glad I met you".
If I can say these words through a song, thank you.
For being able to spend each day laughing with you, my dear,
I say thank you.

Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, now and forever.
Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, thanks, I thank you.

Although seasons change,
I'll still keep on reaching out for you.
“Well just you and you and you”.
Because I want to see your smiling face,
I'll keep running to you again.

Again and again thank you.
I say these words to you, the one who found me,
"I'm glad I met you".
If I can say these words through a song, thank you.
For being able to spend each day laughing with you, my dear,
I say thank you.

Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, now and forever.
Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, thanks, I thank you.

Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, now and forever.
Thank you, thank you, lemme say I thank you.
Thank you, thank you, thanks, I thank you.

Note: (1) The term is "よろしくね", which is what you would say after someone does something for you.

Ubuntu 13.04 'Raring Ringtail' is here, to be followed by 'Saucy Salamander'

Ubuntu 13.04 has been released! However, the new versions comes with more polish and bug fixes rather than striking new innovation. Development on Ubuntu 13.04 has focused less on adding new features and more on performance, Canonical said.

In particular, performance on lightweight systems was a key area of emphasis as part of polishing Ubuntu for use on mobile devices, the company said. Accordingly, version 13.04 aims to deliver not just significantly faster response times in casual use, but also a reduced memory footprint.

You can download the Linux distribution from the Ubuntu project site. In the meantime, Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth today also named the next version of the software: Ubuntu 13.10, due in October, will be nicknamed “Saucy Salamander.”

[via PC World]

Uta no Prince sama Maji Love 2000% single ranked 3rd

The new UtaPri single, Uta no Prince sama Maji Love 2000%, was released this week and has been ranked 3rd on this week's Oricon's ranking chart.
Congratulations my princes!
Taken from Suwabe's twitter: Ren's shirt merchandise and the new CD.

April 25, 2013

Swype keyboard finally makes its way to the Google Play Store

swype feature
Swype has always been in beta and excluded from the Play Store. Swype was a one-of-a-kind keyboard when it first burst onto the scene, but the business model the company followed of tying up device manufacturers meant that end users didn’t have access to it, unless you bought that particular device, which at the time was the Samsung Galaxy S. Since being bought by Nuance Communications, the strategy has obviously changed, and after a long time in beta, the Swype keyboard is finally available to users directly from the Play Store.
swype screens

Uta no Prince sama Maji Love 2000% - Episode 4 [v.P]

If I had to use two pictures to summarize UtP ep 4, it would be:
Oh and something for jokes: You'll have to speak louder because this episode just caused more ovaries to explode.

April 24, 2013

Pumpkin's Palette: Mikasa - Shingeki no Kyojin

Right... I said I was going to attempt to sketch the background as well... forget that.
Scene is taken from Episode 2 of Shingeki no Kyojin. Character is Mikasa, the girl who has an 8-pack. She's so manly.
Just realised the left eye angle isn't right... grrrr
Original Screencap

JMusic update: angela's new album ZERO + download link

Not entirely related pic. K <-> angela sings songs for this anime?
I didn't even know angela was releasing an album today until I saw an update on my music source websites.
angela is a 2-wo/man Jpop band. I discovered this band through the anime K. They provided about 4 songs to the anime. They are also providing the ending song to the currently airing anime Kakumeiki Valvrave. I like this band's lead singer's (atsuko) strong powerful female voice. I think her voice is on par with other strong female singers such as Faylan and May'n. 
This album was very energetic and I liked all of the songs on this album. Try it out here.

Good Smile Company Offers Vocaloid Earphone Jacks for When the Music Stops

Good Smile Company has the solution for a lonely iPhone. When it's not in use, you can cover the earphone jack with one of six Vocaloid earphone jacks. Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin and Kagamine Len are featured with designs based on illustrations by Y-oji, Souno and Putidevil. Arriving in August, these cuties will be selling trading packaging, with the blind boxes going for 500yen ($5) each.

Facebook Messenger gets official sticker support

Facebook Messenger
Sending stickers in Facebook Messenger was possible before today's update, but only using an invisible button that was located just to the left of the "+" button. It looks like Facebook is finally ready to reveal this feature, and has added a smiley face button to access the sticker screen. 

Multiple pages of smiley face and critter stickers are included in the app, with an optional sticker store that has even more cute critters you can download. Also listed in the change log is a batch of bug fixes, which is always good to see.

April 23, 2013

Pumpkin's Palette: Miyuki - Red Data Girl

I may be naive in my thinking, but as part of my plan to improve my artistic skills, I decided to start a new project which I call "Screenshot it". As the name suggests, what I plan to do is pick a screenshot (at random) and do my best to imitate that scene, whether it be characters, buildings or backgrounds, with my pencil, eraser and paper.
This is my first drawing from that project. It's a scene from episode 3 of Red Data Girl, the character is Miyuki. Also, one lesson, when shading make sure to place a clean sheet of paper between your hand and the drawing, otherwise there will be smudges everywhere on your drawing.
My imitation 
Original screencap

GAC: Introducing the userbar

With the announcement of change of the community picture of the GAC, other small announcement was made regarding the introduction of community banners and logos. Today's release of the official userbar is just one of the many new things that are coming.

What is a userbar?
A userbar is usually a signature in a forum, 350 pixels in width, by 19 pixels in height, which usually displays images and the font "Visitor" Displaying what the person likes, such as bands. They can be stacked, or fade into other userbars.

What do I do with it?
Well, you can attach it to your signature on the forums you frequently visit, to your email's signature, Google+ posts, blogs, websites etc...pretty much anywhere that represents you.

How do I download it?
Right-click image -> Save image as...

[Google+ Anime Community]

Report: The Start Button Is Coming Back To Windows

If you’ve been pining for the Start button since Windows 8 arrived on the scene, we have some potentially good news. Sources who have spoken to The Verge claim that it will reappear in Windows 8.1.

The sources have suggested that the newly reintroduced button will let users access the Start Screen — not the traditional Start Menu. It will, however, reside in the traditional bottom left corner, looking almost identical to the existing Windows flag used in the Charm bar.

The start button was killed off during development for Windows 8, with developers claiming that the rise of pinning applications to the taskbar had made the little button redundant — though it was replaced with a Hot Corner. But users have been missing it: so far Pokki for Windows, a Start Menu replacement, has been downloaded 1.5 million times.

[via Gizmodo]

Brothers Conflict Anime's Lead Actress, Song, Visual Revealed

Geneon revealed the lead voice actress, ending theme song, key visual, and logo for this July's Brothers Conflict anime series on Monday. Rina Satou will play the show's female protagonist, Ema. Sylph magazine's original romance novel project centers around a girl who suddenly gains 13 stepbrothers — from 32 years old down to 12 years old — when her father remarries. She joins the Asahina family under one roof at the Sunrise Residence complex.

The ending theme song, entitled "14 to 1," will be sung by 14 of the male cast members, with Kazuyuki Okitsu as Masaomi, Daisuke Hirakawa as Ukyō, Junichi Suwabe as Kaname, Nobuhiko Okamoto as Hikaru, Kenichi Suzumura as Tsubaki, Kousuke Toriumi as Azusa, Tomoaki Maeno as Natsume, Ken Takeuchi as Louis, Daisuke Ono as Subaru, Daisuke Namikawa as Iori, Yoshimasa Hosoya as Yūsuke, Kenn as Fūto, Yuuki Kaji as Wataru, and Hiroshi Kamiya as Juli, the main character's pet. The anime's official website already announced that the opening theme song "BELOVED×SURVIVAL" will be performed by Gero.

The official name of the 14-singer group performing the ending theme will be announced during a public recording of the web radio program Sanrajio Rejidensu (Sun Radio Residence) on April 28.

Jun Matsumoto is directing the anime at the studio Brains Base. Natsuko Takahashi is in charge of scripts, and Kumi Ishii is adapting the characters in Udajo's original illustrations for animation.

Source: ANN

April 22, 2013

GAC: New logo revealed

Check out the revealing of the new logo!

Karneval - Episode 3 [v.P]

When you get to the climax of the episode (jokes)

This is more like a rant and lists of screenshots rather than a review. I would probably call these "anime review" posts as BSS: Blargh and Screenshots. By Blargh I mean just random thoughts that pop into my head as I watch an episode. But enough of my rambles, and let's move on to the promised "blargh" - Episode 3 of Karneval.
Yogi gets flung out the door.

Featured Wallpaper: Black Rock Shooter 2

This is another Black Rock Shooter wallpaper which I found was pretty well illustrated. The background has a nice abstract, rough gradient texture with a soft blue glow. Black Rock Shooter in the center as if contemplating about something. Anyhow, it's a great wallpaper for any BRS fans out there.

April 21, 2013

UtaPri Maji Love 2000% ED song + Bakuman OST 3 + Psycho Pass OST 2 downloads

  1. Some kind hearted soul uploaded the latest UtaPri single. It features the ED song of the currently airing anime. *cue pumpkin's fangirl scream* Download here. The second song is so pretty. *sparkles*
  2. Psycho Pass OST 2 download here. It's as awesome as the first OST.
  3. Bakuman OST 3 download here. One of the best written anime/manga. It's a must watch!

Infinite Stratos Anime's 2nd Season Confirmed With Promo Video

The IS All-Night Festival event confirmed on Saturday that there will be a new Infinite Stratos anime, and that it will be the second season, Infinite Stratos 2. It also presented a promotional video, and a short version of the video is now streaming online:

[via ANN]

GAC: Something is coming...

Something is coming...
What could it possibly be?

April 20, 2013

10 Best Ubuntu 13.04 Features

Who else is excited about the release of the world's most popular Linux distribution - Ubuntu 13.04.

What can you expect from this release? Unlike previous releases, Ubuntu 13.04 brings about a few dramatic changes, but mainly some needed polish and performance boosts to the system.

1. New Window Snap Animation

Windows snapping was a really popular feature in the Windows operating systems and its handy to quickly display two applications side-by-side without overlapping.

For 13.04 a bit of attention has been given to the animation shown on screen to tell you that ‘you’re about to snap’. Developers have changed its appearance from that of a generic orange box spreading outwards to a semi-transparent copy of the window about to be snapped.

Chrome Theme: Uta no Prince-sama

Here is another Chrome theme created by me as requested by pumpkin_so77. It is a Uta no Prince-sama theme for the fangirls (and the occasional guy). Hmm...not much to describe here. It's a simply shades of gray on a white background with the characters from the anime on the bottom-right. I've set it so the character's head don't get chopped off by the 'Most Visited' panel on the New Tab page. Enjoy!

Jun Fukuyama's 4th album teaser video revealed

Jun Fukuyama, a famous seiyuu, is releasing his 4th album, "Love Letters 3 ~Matsuri No Kuni De~" on 22nd May 2013. The production company Flying Dog posted a teaser video of 『目隠しの真実』(Blindfolded Truth) which will be included as a bonus DVD with the limited edition of the album.
This promo song isn't as impactful as I would have liked.

April 19, 2013

Aoi Shouta to release new mini-album in June

Aoi Shouta announced on his blog this morning that he will be releasing a mini-album on 26th June 2013, titled Blue Heart. Aoi is a lesser known and fairly new seiyuu who has voiced characters such as Ai from UtaPri and Ryunosuke from Kimi to Boku. His voice is rather unique and sounds feminine (very beautiful), and not to mention he looks rather feminine as well, much like the singer Piko.

PSotD - 偏愛の輪舞曲 (Henai no Rondo)

Title: 偏愛の輪舞曲 (Henai no Rondo)
Year: 2013
Notes: Fresh off the stove, the OP of the anime Karneval was released on Wednesday the 17th. Another amazing song by GRANRODEO. Review of the Karneval episodes will be coming soon (after I get out of work and once it's subbed). I'll just say that after reading 50 or so chapters of the manga I still had no idea what the plot is about. I'm only watching the anime because of the seiyuus, bishies (fanservice), and the art is really beautiful.
I think the second and third songs in this single are better than their main song.
DDL: here

Google+ Comments available on Blogger

If you are a Blogger user, you can now add Google+ Comments to your blog. Google announced the new commenting system today, which brings an experience Google+ users should be familiar with. Google+ Comments offer deep integration with the social network, and some nifty features.

Traditional commenting systems display comments posted directly on a blog post. With Google+ Comments, when someone posts publicly on Google+ about your post, all conversations appear alongside other comments.
Google+ Comments
When someone posts a comment, they have the option to share publicly or to their circles on Google+.
Google+ Comments
Comments are categorized by “Top Comments”, “Newest First”, and comments specifically from your circles. You can easily switch between all three. If someone shares a comment to a circle, you won’t be able to view the comments associated with it, unless you are in the circle.

To enable Google+ Comments, go to the Google+ tab on the Blogger homepage, and select “Use Google+ Comments.” This new commenting system could eventually make its way to WordPress blogs, but for the time being, Blogger offers a nice testing ground.

April 18, 2013

Dansai Bunri no Crime Edge - Episode 3 [v.P]

Recap Ep 1: 

This anime is about a boy with hair cutting fetishes and a girl whose hair cannot be cut, and their fateful encounter. (Or so it seemed).

Recap Ep 2: 

We learnt that the girl, named Iwai, is the offspring of the Queen of Hair (I know... it's lame), who left two curses when she died, first of all her offspring would have cursed hair that cannot be cut, and secondly there would be people who owned special tools, called 'killing goods', and these tools would 'possess' their owners, called 'Authors', and force them to murder people. The Queen promised that whoever first kills Iwai gets to have a wish granted, namely the removal of the 'killing goods' curse. The MC's (male), called Haimura, ancestors owned a set of killing goods, namely a pair of scissors and said ancestor was involved in a huge murder crime; now that the killing good is in Haimura's hands, he has the urge, or rather the scissors force him to have a cutting fetish. After Haimura learned that other Authors are out to kill Iwai he swore that he will be the Queen's (Iwai) knight and protect her.

Ep 3: