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marthaurion

A Glance Inward

Out of laziness, I just pulled from my leftover screenshot stock. Don't have all my pictures in China.

Out of laziness, I just pulled from my leftover screenshot stock.

Tomorrow marks the end of the first full year that I’ve written for this blog (I started in June 2011, so the year was already halfway done). I don’t like to do milestone posts, so I didn’t write anything for the one year mark. However, I’m low on content this week, so consider this a sort of make-up post for it.

[WhyNot] Robotics;Notes - 11 [0562D866].mkv_snapshot_07.23_[2012.12.21_05.06.39]

How do people normally start for these things? I guess they start with how they’ve changed in the time that has past. I started the blog mostly out of a fit of boredom…I thought it might help with my writing ability and it was on a topic I enjoyed. In the beginning, I only had a few reviews and my posts were fairly summary-heavy, which is something I’ve worked to move away from.

I’ve kept to my style of screenshots for episodic posts and wallpapers for everything else. I moved to my owned domain…changed my layout a couple of times. My posts are a lot more structured, which makes it easier to keep up with the post count I keep (not sure how much that works against me). That about sums it up.

[UTW-Mazui]_Little_Busters!_-_11_[720p][5E90CE25].mkv_snapshot_11.06_[2012.12.16_08.08.37]

Things I could improve upon? I’m still fairly indecisive, so my opinions are usually easily swayed and likely very weak. But I dunno how I’d even go about changing that. I’m sure my website appearance is due for another rework, but that will come when I’m willing to put in the effort. I’m still low-confidence when it comes to this site too…I stop myself from advertising it because I feel it’s not good enough.

I really have no idea how long I can keep this up. Who knows what will happen…especially if I get a demanding job. I think the reason I’m so strict about not missing a day with my posts is that I fear that when that crumbles, the blog will be on its way to decline. Kind of funny when I think about it. Anyway…that’s all I got. Thoughts? (Note: this is actually the second revision of this post…the first one actually sounded pretty whiny. I hope I was about to get rid of that).

Aniblog Tourney Thoughts

Since I have basically no chance of making it past the third round and have made it as far I wished, I’ve decided to post my thoughts on (or maybe I should say problems with) the aniblog tourney rather than advertise. I know that these types of posts have been everywhere, so I’ll try to make it worth your time. Blah blah circlejerk or ramblings about vote manipulation or vote begging…none of that here.

Personally, I believe that asking a friend for a vote is perfectly fine because the tourney has no restrictions on participants and the rules say something to the effect of “vote for the blog you’d rather read.” I’m fairly certain my buddy would rather read my blog than my opponent…simple logic. That aside, let’s look at things a bit more analytically…keep things objective. Sorry…this is gonna be long.

My first qualm with the aniblog tourney is pretty basic, but it is something that doesn’t seem to have disappeared with the new voting system…a relic of my AP Statistics class in high school. Polls should always have a random ordering for the choices. Given two choices (and in this round’s case, four), it’s much more likely for someone to pick the first one given no strong feelings for any other choice. It’s not really a big problem to implement this sort of thing, but it does a lot. Don’t believe me? I ran the numbers. In the first round, 62% of the blogs who won were the ones listed first.

Yes, I understand that the posts have the headers for each matchup that say “XXXX vs. YYYY”, but that isn’t an excuse…it just sounds like laziness to me. Does that even have to be there? Even if it does, I think it still might be helpful to have them below the poll rather than above it so that the first thing a voter sees isn’t that ordering.

A view of my own stats page. The weekends are the darkened columns.

Next up on the docket is something that I actually pointed out to someone before the tourney started, getting the response of something to the effect of “oh, it won’t be a big deal…” Time frames. Each match appears for two days, with new matches going up every day. People have stuff to do, and internet traffic reflects that. Typically, more people are online over the weekends than the middle of week (Wednesday/Thursday), which skews samples.

Even if you ignore that, there comes the issue of motivation. Four matches go up on one day, or in this round’s case, one match of four blogs. It’s just not possible to research every blog in every matchup with new ones coming each day. And even if someone had the time, where’s the motivation? Why not just wait for the next set of blogs? With how long the tourney has dragged so far, it hardly seems logical to use an argument of keeping interest in the event.

Let’s take a step back and talk about some smaller things (and by that, I mean things that I don’t feel like talking about for a full section individually). First up, participant selection. The organizers created some rules for qualification (no photo blogs, no translation blogs, etc.) and then proceeded to ignore them. Nothing more to say on that.

Next, settling ties. Rather than do something like create a tiebreaker round, the organizers choose to allow both blogs to advance. I think that’s just unfair to punish the next round blog, which actually had nothing to do with creating the tie. For a similar reason, making the tied blogs auto-lose is also unfair (but is arguably less unfair).

An example of poor seeding.

Break’s over…on to another topic. Let’s talk about seeding. I’ve been in a lot of Starcraft 2 tournaments, so seeding isn’t new to me. It makes sense. If the first round consists of about equally matched pairings, it’s unfair to the higher level players, who have a chance of losing while a lower level player has a chance of advancing. In the example above, the platinum level player gets by with a game against a silver player (near the lowest level), while the two masters players (the near highest level) are pit against each other.

There was an attempt at seeding by placing participants from the first tourney in later rounds, but absolutely no semblance of effort in the first round. As a result, first round matches were littered with both extremely close matches as well as complete one-sided roflstomping. Heck…use Alexa or something for all I care. As long as it’s standardized in some way.

I’ll end on something I noticed with the new voting system. The great new system that will make everything better has decided to put vote results up on the voting screen. Before, people would have to click to see results prior to voting, which means that it could be avoided unless you just wanted to see them first.

Now, they’re just there and will subconsciously affect the decisions of everyone, not just those that want to be influenced. The rich get richer, and it’s even more so with this new system. Arguably, this isn’t the biggest deal, but that would frankly be why I put it at the very end.

Well…that was quite a lot of stuff. For those of you able to make it through all of that information, congratulations. At the end of the day, most of this stuff is based on my perception, and I likely don’t know the full story (although am I really asking for much?). For example, I don’t know how they really approached seeding because it isn’t shown like the first tourney. Let me know if I missed anything…hope you didn’t find this too boring. And finally, good luck to anyone still in the tourney!

Aniblog Tourney Round 2

Vote for me here!

After somehow making past the first round by seven votes, it’s time to start up again with round 2. Same deal, basically…too lazy to type it all up again. This time, I’m up against Nigorimasen, so once again give them a look before making a vote…preferably for me, but for whoever you feel is better (while you’re at it, you should also give a vote to Feal over at EmptyBlue because he’s awesome).

So once again, let me put up some stuff to help out with the navigation of my blog. Out of general laziness, I just copied the stuff from my first post with some minor modifications. Also, a second thing…I made a Rubik’s Cube video for today as well to give you something to look at (also because it’s kinda the thing that makes me different). Not my best showing, but meh…I’m out of practice.

  • If editorials are your things, most of mine go under the label of Life’s Great Mysteries…just the name I came up with for my take on things. They’re just the musings I have when I sit alone in a room in front of a computer. I also put a lot of work into a post about my reviewing process.
  • I also recently organized all of my reviews into a page so that they can be found more easily. A note about my reviewing style…I’ve been toying around with different systems, and I don’t have a set style yet. You can find them here: Reviews
  • If you’re bored and curious about me, I answered AceRailgun’s 50 Questions as well.
  • I’m one of those guys that’s just kinda around. I’ve even appeared in a podcast with AceRailgun and Yerocha. I was a guest on the Anime Afterlife Podcast too once or twice.

Aniblog Tourney Post

Vote for me here!

Well, it seems the time has come for me to step up to the plate in the Aniblog Tournament. Honestly, I’ve been kinda looking forward to this. Mostly because I want to see how well I can do…but also because I just love a good competition. Plus, I have extensive experience in these sorts of situations. Let’s see…get picked last for sports teams…lost in the class president election in high school…hmm, maybe not.

Anyway, I felt it would be a good idea to have a post like this to keep people in the loop. Plus everyone else has been doing it, so I figure I’ll just follow suit. Before I continue, I ask that you check out my opponent over at Riyoga’s Ramblings and check his stuff before making a decision in this vote. Of course, I’d prefer if you chose me, but there’s no reason we can’t be civil. The link for the vote is above, but I’ll put it here again just in case.

Now, let’s continue on with me, shall we? Basically, I started this blog in a bit of a random moment, and I just kinda stuck with it. I don’t give all that much thought to my writing style…just do what’s natural. For the most part, I aim to be pretty lax with what I say and try to be regular with my posting. Most of my stuff is episodic coverage of airing shows, but I also write reviews and the occasional editorial. As for where to find this stuff:

  • If editorials are your things, most of mine go under the label of Life’s Great Mysteries…just the name I came up with for my take on things. They’re just the musings I have when I sit alone in a room in front of a computer. The protagonists one is probably my favorite. I also put a lot of work into a post about my reviewing process.
  • I also recently organized all of my reviews into a page so that they can be found more easily. A note about my reviewing style…I’ve been toying around with different systems, and I don’t have a set style yet. You can find them here: Reviews
  • If you’re bored and curious about me, I answered AceRailgun’s 50 Questions as well.
  • I’m one of those guys that’s just kinda around…I’ve written some stuff over at my friend Wanabrar’s Blog. I’ve even appeared in a podcast with AceRailgun and Yerocha. I was a guest on the Anime Afterlife Podcast too once.
  • Final note: I solve Rubik’s Cubes if you think that’s cool.

So I hope you’ll consider throwing a vote in for me in the tourney. It’s my first time participating, and I would greatly appreciate any support.